Paste (magazine) - "Springsteen reclaims his song that became Patti Smith's most commercially successful number 'Because the Night' with grace and brooding sensuality."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.875 stars out of 5
-- "[T]he sound of 20 years of classic American pop filtered through one extraordinary performer....It's a fascinating insight into Bruce's habit of honing and tweaking his material, trying out all manner of variations."
Uncut (magazine) - p.825 stars out of 5
-- "[B]ig, bold, vibrantly coloured and laced with sweeping chorus hooks and towering middle eights. In a word, spectacular."
Personnel: Bruce Springsteen (vocals, guitar, harmonica); Steve Van Zandt (vocals, guitar); Clarence Clemons (vocals, saxophone, percussion); Kevin Buell (guitar); Roy Bittan (piano, keyboards); Danny Federici (organ, glockenspiel); Charlie Giordano (organ); Garry Tallent (bass guitar); Harry McCarthy, Max Weinberg (drums).
Audio Mixers: Chuck Plotkin; Jimmy Iovine; Bob Clearmountain.
Audio Remasterer: Bob Ludwig.
Liner Note Author: Dale Adamson.
Recording information: Record Plant, NY; Thrill Hill Recording, Stone Hill Studio.
Directors: Barry Rebo; Arnold Levine.
Editor: Thom Zimny.
Photographers: Frank Stefanko; Eric Meola; Karla Olmedo; Walt Casey Jr.; Mark Wyville; John Wooding.
The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story is a three-CD/three-DVD collection that includes a completely remastered version of the Darkness album and two more discs containing 21 unreleased songs recorded during the period that eventually produced the album. There is so much music here that Bruce Springsteen wondered whether or not much of this music should have been released between 1975's Born to Run and 1978's Darkness. The sheer amount of it is surprising in and of itself. That said, given how much of this is first-rate Springsteen and E Street Band material, it's staggering. The first of the three DVDs features a full-length documentary (which was shown on HBO) on the making of the album. The second disc contains a complete 2009 performance of the album at the Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park, NJ, as well as previously unseen footage from the Thrill Hill Vault, including complete song performances from band rehearsals, studio sessions, and live concerts during the Darkness era. The third DVD is a complete concert performance by Springsteen and the E Street Band in Houston during 1978. The set also includes an 80-page spiral-bound reproduction of Springsteen's notebooks documenting the album sessions. ~ Thom Jurek