Some of the discussion on the thread for the new Archive release inspired me to start this... it may die a quick death, who knows, but I thought it worth separating from other Archive Series discussions.
What are some of your favourite song sequences from the live Archive series shows? Let's keep it to officially released Archive stuff as opposed to bootlegs etc. Anything from a two song sequence to a multi song run. It could just be two or more great song performances linked from a particular show, or a sequence that really works narratively.
To get the ball rolling...
Jack Of All Trades -> Downbound Train (this is what set me off on this idea). From Helsinki 2012. Masterwerk of thematic setlist construction pairing these two, and performances of both songs are tremendous to boot.
The Leeds 2013 "sign collection" wildcard sequence. Local Hero / Gotta Get That Feeling / Bad Moon Rising / Thundercrack. Just amazing performances of all four songs, engaging between song banter, just a segment that captures for me the fun of a top Bruce performance.
Spare Parts / War / BITUSA. Could be pretty much any TOL show, but my favourite is the MSG release. The TOL tour BITUSA performances are for mine the gold standard for full E Street band versions, but somehow listening to that three song sequence together makes the eventual BITUSA even more powerful in context. Bruce's genius as not just a performer but as a master sequencer of a set list has never been better presented.
Who'll Stop The Rain / Rocky Ground (Fenway 2012). What, The. Actual. Fuck. Just when I was seeking one of those mind blowing moments that just makes me want to climb on my roof and shout my Bruce love to the universe, the Archive series delivers again.
The entire Stockholm 88 encore. This is just mind blowingly awesome. And it feels like it will never end. He's heading off after Raise Your Hand, surely he's done... hell no, here's a loose as a goose Quarter To Three. Done now? Nah, how about some Twist And Shout. Starting with acoustic BTR, stopping at a unique horns driven Caddy Ranch, the best full band Bobby Jean I've ever heard... just nugget after top shelf nugget.
I could go on, but I want to hear from the rest of you...
And coming into the Great Sequence charts with a bullet... making it's debut straight in the Top 5.... it's Iceman / Incident On 57th Street from Upper Darby 2005.
The Souls Of The Departed / Living Proof / BITUSA sequence from the 1993 archive show is an example of a great flow of songs. What is even more remarkable about how well that sequence plays is the fact that from taking a cursory glance through setlists from the 1993 tour, this wasn't how he sequenced the shows normally... it was Souls straight into BITUSA.
Actually, The River and Who'll Stop The Rain leading into those three songs is a pretty solid five song sequence now that I look at it.
I've had to stick Philly 2009 on now ("No Surrender" onwards of course) and for as much as I'm enjoying "I'm Goin' Down" I'm surprised at myself for not throwing it in as a recommended listen, regardless of Clarence's less than perfect solo.
Oh, and the four-pack of "Higher and Higher" / "Spirit" / "Loose Ends" / "Kitty" may well be the Series' most unsung stretch of gems.
No Surrender sequences into Bobby Jean on the Philadelphia 10/20/09 release when the Born In The U.S.A. album was performed.
Soulmates - Glory Days into Dancing in the Dark
Songs with intro- can't beat what Mario said, I can't even think of another!
Songs that move flawlessly- Youngstown - Murder Inc - Badlands.
I have a question? An evolutionary one. Do songs become soulmates because Bruce plays them together, or can songs the soulmates get scattered throughout the setlist? Like in real life?!
I'm asking because I believe No Surrender and Bobby Jean are soulmates, for example, but I don't remember hearing them together live...
The two most incompatible songs he ever blended together so nicely have to be The Wish, followed by one of his best intros, into It's The Little Things, Belfast.
A good example of the creative musical transition is Lonesome Day, No Surrender into Gypsy Biker, Tampa 2008.
Grammatical question. Soulmates or soul mates? Thank you! 😊
I was thinking today what actually makes a great sequence... Came up with a very simplified conclusion, and am interested in what you guys have to say...
I have three categories:
A. Songs, the soulmates
B. Songs which Bruce magically ties together with his intros
C. Songs which musically just flow flawlessly from one to another, without any spoken word from Bruce
I'll admit that on first glance I never expected "Two Hearts" / "Ramrod" / "Twist and Shout" - "Do You Love Me?" / "Jersey Girl" / "Sherry Darling" to be my favourite sequence on August 22nd, 1985.
I also didn't expect "Jersey Girl" to be my least favourite performance of the five either.
Oh, I love Wild Billy's Circus Story into Nebraska on the 11-16-90 Christic show.
"All aboard, Nebraska's our next stop."
And so it is.
There's a pretty nice 7 song sequence from MSG 11-07-09 that begins with The E Street Shuffle and ends with New York City Serenade.
Forgot another one of my favourites, the six-pack to conclude Freehold '96.
"Growin' Up" / "This Hard Land" / "My Hometown" / "Racing in the Street" / "The Promised Land" / "Freehold".
We can happily make it a seven-pack if you want to include "Across The Border" too.
Most every night of the Darkness Tour
Prove It, Racing, Thunder Road and Jungleland. Would we kill to get that four pack now or what?
Not the Darkness tour: Leeds13: Roulette, MLWNLYD, No Surrender, Something in the Night!
I'm still stuck in 1988. Happy Birthday to Roy Orbison into Born To Run.
I was thinking about doing this chronologically, but I need to jump ahead because I'm disappointed at myself for forgetting to mention the stunning four-pack of isolation, rejection, redemption and salvation from Grand Rapids 2005:
"Nothing Man", "I Wish I Were Blind", "Racing in the Street", "The Rising". In fact, it might actually be my favourite sequence in the series.
"I have millions of dollars in technical expertise! Anybody hear me!"
And the last 8 11/24/75
War/Born In The U.S.A./Chimes Of Freedom - Stockholm 88
Born In The U.S.A./Badlands/Out In The Street/Johnny 99/Seeds/Atlantic City/The River - Giants Stadium 8-22-85. Seriously, he coulda stopped right there and you'd still know everything you need to know.
Summertime Blues/Girls In Their Summer Clothes - Boston 2012. This sequence does a lot for me. In two songs Bruce takes me from the early days of June to the cooling end of summer, from youthful lust to a resigned and lonesome middle age. It's subtle and it's brilliant.
Seeds/Johnny 99/The Ghost Of Tom Joad - Nassau 09. I don't know how many times I've listened to this sequence. It's what I'm here for in a nutshell.
Incident On 57th Street/Rosalita (Come Out Tonight) - Nassau 12-29-80. Perfection.
Youngstown/Murder Incorporated/Badlands - reunion tour. It worked for me every single time and it still does.
I will get carried away with this, don't worry, but for now here are just four offerings.
"Darkness" into "Independence Day" - September 20th, 1978 has always been a favourite mine, not even in a thematic sense, they're simply two fantastic performances that happen to be joined.
"Jungleland" into "Rosie" - September 21st, 1979; "The night was dark, and the moon was yellow, and the leaves came tumbling down". That's it.
"Sandy" / "Rendezvous" / "Fade Away" / "The Price You Pay" / "Wreck on the Highway" from New Year's Eve 1980 is a delight.
"Two Hearts" into "Who'll Stop the Rain" - June 5th, 1981; the former gets overshadowed by the latter, but they need each other.
Number 4 on your list absolutely blew my mind last weekend....
Many.. From the top of my head.
Cover me into BD, 88
Ain't got you into She's the one, 88
Knock on Wood/Bus Stop/Thundercrack/Frankie/Prove It 78/Darkness
From Fenway 2 12 latest archive