When it comes to Bruce Springsteen, most people love the wide variety he has laid out over the years. However, the question that divides most fans is “Born to Run” or “Born in the USA?”
The two albums were monumental in both Springsteen’s career and Rock ‘n’ Roll history. Each one of these classics houses great songs that are always turned up to eleven.
Starting with the earlier album “Born to Run.” The third Springsteen album dropped in 1975. The album launched him into commercial success.
The album opens up with the song “Thunder Road.” A love song for the ages. The lyrical genius of the song draws listeners in and doesn’t let go. The album never slumps
After the “Thunder Road” it goes straight into “Tenth Avenue Freeze Out” a swinging rock song with incredible saxophone by Clarence “Big Man” Clemons.
The second side of the album doesn’t stop. It starts off with “Born to Run,” a song that showcased Clemons God-like playing ability. The album ends with a nine and the half minute arena rock song “Jungleland.” Needless to say you can’t go wrong with “Born to Run.”
Now to the other side, “Born in the USA.” The iconic album cover of the bottom half of Springsteen with a red hat in his back pocket in front of an American flag.
The album dropped nearly ten years later in 1984. The sound of the rock has transformed by this time and Springsteen essentially made a synthetic led album.
The album opens up with the title track “Born in the USA,” a power song sung by millions about the how the war affects people, focusing on the veterans who are coming back after fighting for their country and being treated poorly. This is and was a powerful protest song.
Side A of the album ends with the calming but incredible song “I’m on Fire.” The B side of the record then goes into some of Springsteen’s radio hits.
Side B houses the classics: “I’m Going Down,” “Glory Days” and “Dancing in the Dark.” All of which are incredible songs.
After listening to both albums over and over again it is hard to decide which one is better. They are both incredibly iconic albums and will go down as two of the greatest albums of all time.
Unfortunately, there can only be one. Some of my favorite Springsteen songs are on “Born in the USA” such as “I’m Going Down” and “Dancing in the Dark”.
However, “Born to Run” has a gritty edge that doesn’t come through as much on Born in the USA. Therefore, the better album to me is “Born to Run”.
Most people don’t agree. Give both albums a listen and decide for yourself. You will not be disappointed with either of them. There’s a reason Springsteen’s nickname is “The Boss.”
Cameron Campbell is a staff writer for The Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected]