Bruce Springsteen is back with Western Stars his nineteenth audio album. The album is made up of thirteen tracks and was produced by Ron Aniello (Barbwire Ladies, Jude Cole, Shania Twain).
Western Stars was heavily influenced by Springsteen's love of Southern California pop music from the 1970's (Jimmy Webb,Glen Campbell, Harry Nilsson,Burt Bacharach).
At first I was a little taken aback about the idea, but in all honesty, these new influences really work well with the material.
The lush, orchestration really adds a cinematic element to Springsteen's character driven songs. Western Stars plays out like a long lost 70' s feature film soundtrack. I can even envision either John Wayne or Steve McQueen making a promotional video for some of the tracks on Western Stars.
Springsteen proves once again he is a master storyteller with Western Stars,no exception! The album is made up of jaded movie stars, wanderers, thrill seekers, and loners .Thanks to producer Ron Aniello’s magic touch, the orchestration enhances the mood, making the tracks sound bigger, bolder and dramatic without ever coming off as schmaltzy or cheesy.
As much as Western Stars is a departure, there is a sense in which it's entirely in keeping with Springsteen’s approach. Springsteen has delivered an album that the music is as rich and dramatic and engaging as the characters that he has created. Highly recommended.