Article 1992-12-17 Lexington, KY

Rupp concert proves Boss still has touch

by Walter Tunis
Contributing music critic
Reprinted from the "Lexington Herald-Leader," December 18, 1992.

Call it what you want. Call it a reaffirmation of possibly the single
strongest mainstream rock artist in the business. Call it a relentless
performance that possessed expert pacing and energy.
But if you were one of the 13,000 fans on hand at Rupp Arena last night,
you experienced all of this and more. You were in the middle of a four-hour
power meeting with the Boss himself - Bruce Springsteen.
The agenda was clear: establish a new touring band, work out a truckload
of new material and in the process retain a legendary reputation. The summary?
Springsteen did it all. He did it all with energy to spare.
And the approval rating for this final concert of Springsteen's 1992 tour?
Folks, it went over the top. And that's saying something considering that
the audience had to put up with the concert being postponed from Nov. 21
because of illness.
The first of the concert's two sets focused heavily on tunes from
Springsteen's two newest albums, "Human Touch" and "Lucky Town." Highlights
included "If I Should Fall Behind," a loving lullaby to parenthood and the
future, and the jovial set-closing "Roll of the Dice."
In the second set, the Boss brought out the big guns. All of his gritty,
unrefined rock 'n' energy - which was presented sparingly in the first set -
reached the boiling point. Springsteen offered two drastically different
versions of a tarnished American dream by playing "Souls of the Departed"
and the classic "Born in the USA" in succession.
Topping it was a 12-minute, big-beat marathon called "Light of Day" that
began with a screaming Springsteen guitar solo and ended with the Boss falling
to the stage floor in a mock collapse before yelling out his famous slogan:
"I'm just a prisoner of rock 'n' roll."
This was not the performance of a superstar gone soft as many had feared.
It was instead a sterling showing that proved the years have neither dimmed
Springsteen's intense passion for rock 'n' roll or stage performing. It
proved on uncompromising terms that the Boss is still boss.

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