Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band - Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena - 4/27/12

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Andrew Youssef
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena
4/27/2012

One-two-three-four! No signs of fatigue at night two of Bruce Springsteen's run at Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena; The Boss and the E Street Band turned in a three-hour, 25-song barnburner where everyone in the building knew all the words and loved every second of it.

The Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, the red-headed stepchild of Southern California sporting and concert facilities, was at rare capacity again Friday night. People were still filing in at 8:40 p.m., an hour after the listed start-time, when Springsteen and the E Street Band started into "No Surrender" with the house lights still on and pretzel vendors in the aisles.

All that didn't matter because Bruce was on.

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Andrew Youssef
Bruce Springsteen is the most believable rock 'n' roll megastar alive. He makes you feel like a working-class hero even if you parked your BMW for $40 and then walked through serious urban blight in South Central Los Angeles to get to the show -- just a few minutes ago. He exudes that kind of authenticity. It's so magnetic that suddenly you're him, singing about shuttered factory towns, probably in Ohio, which is the gist of his most recent (17th) album, Wrecking Ball, songs from which he played early on in the set.

Tom Morello was on stage again tonight for "Death to My Hometown," "Jack of All Trades," and "Ghost of Tom Joad," which featured Morello trading verses and guitar solos with The Boss, who more than held his own against the virtuoso guitarist of Rage Against the Machine. The guitar moment of the evening may have to go to Nils Lofgren for his scorcher on "Jack of All Trades" "Youngstown."

Any pyrotechnics were strictly of the musical variety, along with Bruce's trademark classic rock 'n' roll stage moves -- an epic 30-foot crotch-slide, a full-on backbend, and best of all, he surfed the crowd from half court back to the stage. Not too shabby for a 63-year-old; his body and his voice showed no signs of fatigue. To start his encore, he featured the acoustic ballad "Rocky Ground," with his voice as pure as when the set opened 180 minutes before.

Throughout, the enthusiasm never waned, on stage and in the seats. Even songs played thousands of times over three decades ("Born To Run," "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out," "Dancing In The Dark") shook the girders. But more impressively, fans knew the the lyrics and the right time to fist-pump (it's a Jersey thing) during the new songs. There was an emotional salute to recently passed saxophonist Clarence Clemons, and Bruce tricked his longtime guitar tech to come on stage so he could congratulate him on his 1,000th concert.

Location Info

Map

Los Angeles Sports Arena

3939 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA

Category: Music


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10 comments
Jodie
Jodie

I took my 17-year-old son.  Not long after the show started, he turned to me and said, "I now know why they call him The Boss."

Maria Magdala
Maria Magdala

Actually, the cheap seats were $65 & some were better views than the $100 seats. I sat in both as I went both days.And yes Nils & Max were in the Zone on "YOUNGSTOWN".

los angeles dj
los angeles dj

Even after all these years The Boss still brings it!

Kooo Lit
Kooo Lit

I saw a woman in a wheelchair singing her heart out to "Born To Run." Clearly she was not.

Joe from da Jackson Cage
Joe from da Jackson Cage

A truly superb show! Bruce captured the true vibe and flavor of our Jersey homeland long ago and can transport me and everyone else there instantly. My mom now regrets chasing the young Bruce off our lawn when he was 13 or 14, hanging out with the kid next door. Good review Adam, thanks.

OCJack
OCJack

Lofgren did not solo on Jack of All Trades.  That was Morello.  But Lofgren had a sorcher of a solo on Youngstown.  

Albert D'Alligator
Albert D'Alligator

Nils' solo wasn't Jack of All Trades; it was Youngstown, and it was the equal of Tom Morello's work on Ghost of Tom Joad. Both were simply spectacular!

Yourmom
Yourmom

The Boss for president, The Nightwatchman for vp

Adam Lovinus
Adam Lovinus

Thanks OCJack, yes, it was "Youngstown." And it was cooking. I didn't realize Nils didn't use a pick until seeing this show. What a shredder! Thanks for reading. Adam Lovinus

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