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Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
|2. Atlantic City|
|3. Mansion On The Hill|
|4. Johnny 99|
|5. Highway Patrolman|
|6. State Trooper|
|7. Used Cars|
|8. Open All Night|
|9. My Father's House|
|10. Reason To Believe|
1982 release, the first proper solo album from the singer, songwriter and leader of The E-Street Band. Sparsely-recorded on a cassette-tape Portastudio, the tracks on Nebraska were originally intended as demos of songs to be recorded with the E Street Band. However, Springsteen ultimately decided to release the demos themselves.
Hot on the heels of The River, his commercial breakthrough, Springsteen's decision to release the stark, demo-quality Nebraska seems downright perverse. But the genius of the album is unmistakable--with just an acoustic guitar and his howling harmonica to back him, Springsteen tells the stories of characters walking on both sides of the law, some of them directly on the line in between. The effect is that of a powerful series of black-and-white photographs--the details are bleak in and of themselves, but they ignite the imagination in ways that are more satisfying than full-color shots would be. "Mansion on the Hill," "Highway Patrolman," "Atlantic City," and the frightening "Nebraska" are among the most sharply rendered and memorable works of Springsteen's career. --Daniel Durchholz
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Top Customer Reviews
Recorded on his own tape recorder, in his bedroom, it's just Bruce and his acoustic guitar yearning for redemption, deliverance, and a reason to believe. The lyrics on this album will get inside you immediately, within the first few lines of the title track. They will pull you into the desolate world of his disparaged and lonely characters. Bruce is a master at painting portraits of life in his words by creating characters you can feel, see, and love. On 'Nebraska', he creates antiheroes for the common man. In "Johnny 99" you start to empathize with the main character as he descends toward madness after losing his job at the plant in Mahwah late last month. In "Highway Patrolman" Bruce displays the moral ambiguity of an honest man torn between his duty as a law officer and his own flesh and blood. Others like "Used Car" and "Mansion on the Hill" are Bruce's retelling of his childhood memories. They will leave you feeling lost in time, like you are looking into the soul of an old black and white portrait.
"State Trooper" is a song like no other.Read more ›
If you've seen the 1973 movie Badlands (Sissy Spacek and Martin Sheen) you'll have a more profound understanding of the title track. Both it and Mansion on the Hill are slow and mournful whilst Atlantic City has a lilting beat and Johnny 99 is edgy with its nervous guitar riffs that also infuse State Trooper, a song that thematically relates to Highway Patrolman.
Springsteen's characteristic car and road imagery surfaces in Used Cars with its poignant childhood recollections as well as in Open All Night, an uptempo rock song, the only one on the album. The line "radios jammed up with gospel stations, lost souls callin' lost distance salvation" reminds me of Far Away Eyes by the Stones, a tongue-in-cheek country song on Some Girls. For some reason, it also makes me think of Hank Williams.
Guilt, remorse and the yearning for redemption are expressed in vivid oneiric imagery on the haunting track My Father's House. Reason to Believe concludes this outstanding album on an uplifting note with the observation that people ultimately do find meaning. It echoes a similar hope earlier expressed in Atlantic City, the notion that perhaps everything that dies someday comes back. Its simplicity, profundity and power make Nebraska a masterpiece and a highly influential work.
Rather than waste anymore breath on that front, I am sincerely moved by this record. It took balls to put this out when he did. If you ask me, the bombastic likes of Born To Run just pales in comparison. Or anything else he has done, before or since.
I love outlaw songs & the sparseness of the title track is enough to raise the hairs of your neck. It's the sonic equivalent of Charles Starkweather (Badlands serial killer) & Truman Capote's In Cold Blood all rolled into one. Next to the original, only Johnny Cash has done justice to "Highway Patrolman". Cash tried again with, "Johnny 99" but to little avail. One simply can't surpass what Springsteen has laid down here. From the small town yearning of "Atlantic City" to the grey sky imagry of "Reason To Believe", Springsteen reigns all those impending storm clouds in with his intimate, hoarse whisper.
In my humble opinon, this guy works best in a stark setting. But even if he did all his albums like this, Nebraska would still outshine them all. There just comes a time when it all comes together & for Springsteen Nebraska was it. Even more rocking numbers like "Johnny 99" are enhanced by the lack of production. If he sicked the East Street Band on this one, it wouldn't be nearly as powerful.
A thousand bands have since taken their cue from this record but have never come close. Despite all the good intentions of "The Rising", this one casts a longer shadow in my book. In terms of commercial Rock's bleaker moments, Nebraska is right up there with Neil Young's Tonight's The Night. Stark, harrowing & heartbreaking.
Most recent customer reviews
Springsteen fell out of his normal pattern with this one. Stories within songs, full of emotion, yearning, love and regret. It's a head-phones CD, well worth the time.Published 23 months ago by David
This is as raw as it gets. Such an amazing album back to front. Check it out if you haven't alreadyPublished on July 20 2012 by S. Bonnell
This brooding gem of an album offers an atmospheric blend of voice, guitar and harmonica plus the most evocative imagery and poetic lyrics. Read morePublished on May 2 2008 by Peter Uys
In my mind this album will always be associated with a chilling 1970s movie called Badlands. The opening track Nebraska reflects the plot of the film and refers to the "Badlands of... Read morePublished on May 2 2008 by Peter Uys
...But easily the FIRST most boring Springsteen album (and that's saying something, brother). On this one, Bruce decided to slow things down and try to get all 'artsy'. Read morePublished on Sept. 25 2007 by Jason Beck
Bruce decided he had to make this album to further himself as an artist, as to not get stuck in a routine of writing typical pop songs. Read morePublished on June 11 2004 by John F. Dorman
Maybe it's got something to do with my frame of mind at the time, but I really found myself able to enjoy Nebraska while not having much use for The Ghost Of Tom Joad past... Read morePublished on March 29 2004 by William J. Eichelberger
I bought this album about two weeks ago and it hasnt left the changer yet.From the chilling harmonica in nebraska's opening seconds you can tell this is something... Read morePublished on Jan. 9 2004