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It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is a critically-acclaimed sitcom that began in ; airing on FX for the first eight seasons and FXX since season nine. The three-guys- one-girl structure and selfish characters have led many critics to compare the show to Seinfeld , and was frequently called " Seinfeld on crack " by critics. Put it this way: If Seinfeld featured amusing jerks, It's Always Sunny features legitimately terrible people. Dennis is the vain prep from a rich family.
Dee is his shallow, shrill, and insecure sister. Charlie is the high-strung idiot savant who is obsessed with the waitress at a coffee shop. Mac is the wanna-be bruiser forever stuck in adolescence. In the second season, Danny DeVito joins the cast as Dennis and Dee's neglectful father Frank, a shady businessman who is drawn to the gang's depraved lifestyle. Has a Shout-Out page. Please give it some love. You need to login to do this.
Get Known if you don't have an account. With friends like these Are you really going to throw away all your convictions just for a chance to get laid? In "Thunder Gun Express".
Dee gets trapped and ends up being drenched in shit. Referenced in "Dee Gives Birth" when Frank and Charlie admit to going in the sewer frequently to look for treasure, grossing out Dennis and Mac. We've got a dick-hole in the bar. I need you to come fill it in!
Mac, I think this guy just bent himself over a barrel here. Honestly, I think we should think about hiring Terrell. When he's promoting, everybody and they mama's looking to get in!
That's true— they do have, uh, "niggers hanging from rafters. We also have a social responsibility to keep teenagers from drinking. Maybe we have a "social responsibility" [with Charlie also air quoting silently] to provide a safe haven for these kids to be kids. What's so great about me, Charlie? What's wrong with you? Why are you so obsessed with me? I mean, you said it yourself, I'm a mess. So, why don't you just go find somebody better? Well, 'cause there is no one better. And I love you.
You know, it takes discipline to raise a kid, you know? You gotta set rules - you gotta set ground rules! You know, like, uh Get them off the internet! I want this sushi dinner to be the tits! Okay, so you want it to be really expensive. I mean I want to eat it off some Jap broad's tits!
Yeah, guy's got no self-esteem, just like Dee, so they're perfect for each other. So after she bombs [at stand-up] tonight, I'll put them together, thereby controlling the situation, and her, as I always have and I always will. Uh Walt, just Walt- Walt's the plan. Yeah, shut up, Walt. They know who you are. She knows your goddamn name, Walt; I said it, like, a thousand times. Unlike the satisfying and sentimental narratives used in classic sitcoms, It's Always Sunny has spent much of its twelve seasons exploring what happens when a group of narcissistic sociopaths have their insane ideas bankrolled by a troll-shaped millionaire.
Sorry, sorry, that was a mistake. The janitor got ahold of the PA system. Puerto Rican guy, heh! Y'know, the kids are great. I love the kids. Not in a sexual way, no. I was married twenty years, and she was a bitch, but she was old. I never had a problem getting it up with her. Drawing a confession out of someone is like doing a beautiful dance So then, I insinuate that it would be a shame if my account of what happened was different from his and he ended up getting a call from the sherriff.
You know what I mean? And boom, we plow. She grabbed me from behind. I know that, man. You don't grab from behind! The thunder's really-- it's throwing this whole thing off. It's making everything I say seem sinister, which it's not intended to be.
I will eat your babies, bitch! I want in on this action because I am bored to death sitting here. No, that's a bad idea. Usually when you get involved, somebody gets hurt. I'm just palling around with the guys. How's anyone gonna get hurt?
Europe leads the way in sexual experimentation, and it's time we caught up. These kids are throwing rocks at each other for fun! What kind of savages throw rocks at each other to have fun times?! I don't think Dee's that desperate to get famous. I mean, nobody's that pathetic. I can't believe how famous I'm about to be! We got big dreams, Mac.
We're gonna go follow 'em. You guys have nothing without this bar. Don't worry about us, Mac. We'll be just fine. You think I wouldn't know if the guy I'm dating is retarded? There is no way that I am dating a retarded person. How's anybody gonna get hurt? A Handful for an Eye: Dee uses a similar strategy to get herself and Dennis away from violent criminals in "The Gang Goes to the Jersey Shore. Charlie experiences one when he discovers that his mother is a former prostitute.
After getting over it after a few minutes by "burying it down deep" and also refusing to fully believe it , he gets another, much worse BSOD when he sees a mall Santa while shopping with Mac triggering memories of numerous men dressed as Santa coming to his house one by one on Christmas mornings, presumably taking turns with Bonnie.
Dennis has one after he decides to abandon his child. He then realizes that he would just be perpetuating another cycle of hurting and decides to leave Philadelphia to raise his son.
The entire group, with Dennis in particular. Though, the "heroic" part is usually accidental. Albert Zimmerman in the episode "Psycho Pete Returns", who treated Frank at the "nitwit farm", speaks with a German accent and exhibits many qualities of this trope.
Mac is outspokenly against homosexuality, despite increasingly apparent hints that he's Armoured Closet Gay. He Who Fights Monsters: Some of the gang's most frequent victims, in particular Rickety Cricket, Dennis and Dee's biological father Bruce, the Waitress and the Lawyer, often end up stooping to very low levels to seek retribution, usually in the form of the same kind of underhanded schemes that the gang is known for.
These initially decent characters have all become just as unsympathetic as the main cast through their attempts to force karma on the gang, which always either backfires or just ends up restoring the status quo for next week's episode. Inverted with the McPoyles, who try to morally compromise the gang on a regular basis. As warped as the gang can be, the McPoyles are worse.
In , after he struggling with his weight for most of his life, he realized he needed to change for the sake of his future. This is the story of his weight-loss journey. The Seattle coffee chain released a spooky new drink this week that contains a superfood. Here's why nutritionists aren't convinced. While Timberlake recovers, experts say that he can't talk or whisper, let along sing, until the vocal cords heal.
The 'Three's Company' star shares her breast cancer diagnosis story and why she chose to forgo chemotherapy, along with advice for other survivors. Rapuano, MD — unless they're from your eye doctor.
The Environmental Working Group issued a report Wednesday showing that more than a dozen popular cereal and breakfast items contain dangerous levels of a cancer-causing pesticide. Here's what you need to know. In an emotional Instagram post, Aerie model Iskra Lawrence opened up about the pictures that influencers don't share. When she had her lumpectomy, Khim Owens-Baggett was not quite two weeks pregnant — but nobody knew that until later. I knew I was overweight, but that That was the wake-up call I needed.
One new mom who is a breast cancer survivor decided to that a sign would be best to tell anyone in the hospital that she was not able to breastfeed her baby when she gave birth. Bruce said, "Thanks for a great night. We'll be seeing ya. Friends huddled in circles, others stood alone, smiles creasing faces that ain't that young anymore.
Glistening eyes took one last look around the quickly dissipating closing-night crowd, paths crossed on tour about to bring us home to our everyday lives. Lives that, unlike a Bruce show, offer no guarantees.
Lives that for some had been on hold for five weeks after this tour began on a January night in Perth, Australia when Bruce declared the band's allegiance with a "new American resistance. With a raw longing for this magical circus to continue we bade tearful goodbyes and told each other we'd do it again someday. While that may or may not be true, we also swore forever friends.
And that, my friends, will be true… until the end. Bruce Springsteen often refers to his time on stage as his job. Tuesday night in Christchurch it was his calling, and he wore that calling on his sleeve. Bruce knew it; all 30, people in attendance knew it: This one was necessary. This one would echo long after the band left AMI Stadium — a temporary structure built after Christchurch's rugby stadium was heavily damaged in the February 22, earthquake — as a tribute to those lost and a celebration of being glad to be alive.
When this show appeared on the Summer Tour itinerary it was easy to imagine it being special. That earthquake killed and left its historic city center in ruins.
Multiple aftershocks have rocked the Canterbury region. A tsunami threatened the South Island's east coast last year. The citizens of Christchurch have been roiled and frustrated and discouraged by redevelopment delays.
It's no exaggeration to say this Christchurch concert has been anticipated for generations. An optimist says this particular show by this particular band couldn't have come at a better time. A pessimist says no show could live up to such weighty expectations. What does The Boss say? The Boss says it's ass-shaking time. The Boss, as always, is right, and everything, absolutely everything, is alright.
To understand tonight's cathartic show you must know about Wendy Davie. She's an emergency room nurse who married a Christchurch boy, raised three kids and on February 22, did what so many of her fellow citizens did: She then volunteered herself to a trio of policemen.
They drove her into Christchurch's devastated CBD, where she checked in with a commander who gave her his jacket and helmet and sent her to the collapsed Pyne Gould Corporation building. There she helped set up a triage area for victims of the pancaked five-story structure, a place where 18 people lost their lives. Later that night, after a tearful reunion with her family in their quake-damaged home nearly every home in Christchurch was damaged or destroyed by that historically powerful earthquake , she and her husband Pete lay in bed and agreed there was only one thing for them to do: The seed was planted more than three years ago on the day the Springsteen tour of Australia and NZ was announced.
The itinerary included two shows in Auckland but none in Christchurch. Wendy's a fan, but it was lifelong diehard Pete who asked, "How fucking hard could it be? On her lunch break the next day Wendy started finding out by setting up a "Come to Christchurch Bruce Springsteen" Facebook page. After sending invitations to a small circle of friends, she was startled to watch the page attract more than 11, followers in ten days. As it was difficult to contact anyone in the Springsteen organization, she informed Frontier Touring of the petition but never heard a word in response.
That word came from Springsteen himself tonight in his introduction to "My City of Ruins": Wanted us to come and play. It took a while, but I'm glad we got here. I got a chance to drive around and take a look at the city today. I want to send this out to everyone who suffered in the earthquake, send out our love and prayers, and to the emergency services who I know are working today to contain the fires outside of town.
This is for those folks… and for all of you. Can a song possess the person who wrote it? It'll come off as hyperbolic, but Bruce was more than a preacher on this night — he was a messenger, conjurer, shaman, healer.
But tonight Bruce recalibrated it and set it loose within the hearts of the people of Christchurch like a voodoo man stealing souls and setting them free in a better, less lonely place. Prior to this the band had hit the stage at 7: The sun had yet to set behind the stage, but the air was cool — a perfect night for a city never listed on a Springsteen T-shirt until After a guttural "Finally! Bruce's fierce vocals were complemented by a searing guitar duel between he and Steve, who was in spectacular form all night.
Don't think it's ever occurred to me at a Bruce show, but it seemed the songs themselves were secondary to the touching of skin, the making of eye contact, the involvement of "the stands. Everything changed with "My City of Ruins. He let the song's gentle beginning wash over the crowd before making the introduction that set Wendy's heart afire.
After Charlie's blissful organ solo, Jake laid down a sax vibe that made Bruce call out "Do it again! But slowly, slowly over the past ten years it's built itself back up. A song at the end of the day can be about a lot of things — about my town, about your town, about New York City and even personal things that you've lost. Bruce prefaced "Mary's Place" with the usual "Are you ready for a house party? Another sign led to a cracking "Radio Nowhere" that ended with Max pulverizing his drum kit.
Bruce ripped a solo from the Carter administration during "Prove It All Night," and then an audibled "Darkness on the Edge of Town" hit home in a city hobbled by loss and disillusionment. The twosome of "The River" and "Youngstown" have been linchpins throughout the Australian tour and remained so tonight, Nils nearly laying his guitar on the ground during "Youngstown" before detonating another sinister solo. Every song that followed was a setlist standard, and every one crackled and hissed.
An inflatable kiwi was handed to an inquisitive Bruce during "Highway. Bruce asking Steve "Is it quittin' time? Is it hamburger time? Is it sexy time? The final four songs of the main set — "Because the Night," "The Rising," "Badlands," and "Rosalita" — brought the show to a boil.
Steve mauled Bruce's face with hands shoved under Springsteen's armpits from behind during the Three Stooges bit of "Rosalita" because… well… because what else should a couple of sexagenarians be doing in New Zealand on a Tuesday night in front of 30, people?
Bruce thanked City Mission for doing God's work before playing an affecting "My Hometown" that set a plaintive stage for perpetual powerhouse "Born to Run.
A shall-we-say carefree woman on the shoulders of a guy in the pit repeatedly flashed the band, causing Bruce to swing back and forth from the video screen to the crowd.
Where I was standing no one moved. When they did it was to seek out someone to hug or gush about what they'd just experienced. I can't pretend to know how it felt when locals watched Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band walk onto a Christchurch stage for the very first time.
All I could do was study faces, eavesdrop on conversations, put away pints with locals and ask their slurred, ecstatic opinions afterward. For most this was their first Springsteen concert, so their jubilation was fresh, real, untouched by the taint of "Yeah but you should have seen him in blah blah blah She did admit to thinking "We did it" at some point in the night, but she's not someone in search of a slap on the back.
Unsurprisingly, Wendy was more concerned about conveying thanks to Bruce and the band for coming to Christchurch than the accolades that have come her way since Bruce's intro to "My City of Ruins" put a spotlight on her petition. I'll let her words finish this report, as they not only perfectly summarize a special evening but capture her no-bullshit, brilliantly genuine spirit in a city where spirits have been tested but hope, however far-flung, hangs on. When I asked what she'd say to Springsteen if she had his ear, she rubbed her eyes, glanced out the window and looked me straight in the eye.
Coming off the scintillating pair of shows in Brisbane, one of the best pairs of shows I've seen this decade, it seemed unlikely that Bruce would match those setlists or performances, considering the Hope show was more of a festival setting.
He didn't — but what he did deliver was a totally different show that was excellent and just the right one for the circumstances.
The shows in Brisbane or the Philly of the Southern Hemisphere, as some are now calling it were played in a tiny arena, whereas Hope Estate is a huge temporary amphitheater with much of the crowd far away on the lawn. And the place is a winery, so there's a fair amount of drinking going on. Throw in not one but two opening acts, Diesel and Jet, and you could not have a more different setting for a show.
It was a unique night. Adding to the atmosphere was the good ol' fashioned Australian rainstorm, which not only showered the waiting crowd with a torrential downpour but later pelted us with large hail! Fortunately, the weather cleared up, and Jet was able to play their set after a brief delay.
And then it was Boss time. With the strings having played their final show in Brisbane, a crisp and appropriate "Who'll Stop the Rain" opened the show. The difference in the type of night it would be was defined immediately when Bruce launched into "Badlands" and then "Out in the Street" to get the crowd going. A sign request followed for "I Fought the Law," played a little tentatively but still a very nice nugget for the diehards. A few minutes later another sign from the crowd brought us "Waitin' on a Sunny Day," the second of three weather-appropriate songs for the evening.
Bruce then unveiled another sign request, this one for major obscurity "None But the Brave" from the Born in the U. It was a beautiful performance of the song, the first ever in Australia… and it was met with absolute dead silence from the crowd. So that would be the last rarity of the evening, and from there the show went into a string of big rockers, which were completely effective in getting the crowd up and dancing. The apex of this sequence was the Born in the U. The encores opened with one last sign request.
Bill Walsh, all the way from Point Pleasant, NJ, was pulled out of the crowd to play "No Surrender," which was dedicated to Bill's dad — also Bill — who had surgery over the weekend. The crowd ate it up. The audience frenzy built through the regular encore sequence of "Born to Run," "Dancing," "Tenth Avenue," and "Shout" before Bruce launched into "Bobby Jean" to say "good luck, goodbye" to his Australian fans.
The band left the stage, and Bruce returned alone with his acoustic guitar and harmonic rack for a lovely solo "Thunder Road. And with a final wave and "We'll be seeing you," a quite emotional Bruce left the stage, ending a month of shows here in Australia. It's clear he has developed quite an attachment with his Australian audiences after these repeated trips Down Under the past five years, and the feeling is mutual.
From this American, I say with deep gratitude: Let's do it again soon. Welcome to the inferno. Brisbane has been sizzling through a heatwave for months, and tonight it got a little hotter. The final night of a terrific two-night stand, the show again began with "New York City Serenade. Roy Bittan's stunning piano work sets the mood as one of Springsteen's most powerful narratives unfolds. Four years ago, as the Wrecking Ball Tour began, Springsteen crouched at the foot of the same stage and told assembled media that his ticket was his handshake and he would never rely on a show becoming rote.
On three tours over four years he has delivered on his promise… and then some. And when they did — boom, the magic happened. Calling for E-flat, Bruce was back on the telecaster as the band, with terrific backing vocals from all, kicked into "Jole Blon. He advised us that, no matter what you do as a parent, eventually children "have their own lives to live [and] their own mistakes to make.
Fifty-odd years ago the Lovin' Spoonful asked a very simple question: Do You Believe in Magic? Of course we do, we're at a Bruce Springsteen concert. Spotting a sign in the crowd, Bruce turned his attention to Nathan, a young teenager asking if he could get up and play "Growin' Up" with the band.
Bruce asked two pertinent questions. Did he know the song? Could he play guitar? The answers were "yes," so Nathan got on stage, played like a champion, and sang with a confidence of someone doing 50 gigs a year. Keeping the mood up, Bruce played "Out in the Street," took a sign request for "No Surrender," led a full house sing-along for "Hungry Heart," and body-surfed his way back to the main stage.
Tonight the seats were sold with degree views. Spotting a sign behind him, Bruce called for "Mary's Place. Next came a trilogy of songs that embodied joy, nostalgia, desire, loss, and the wonder of the imagination as he performed "Fire," his reworked cover of Elvis Presley's "Follow That Dream," and the masterpiece that is "The River. When the tour began Bruce assured us the job of the artist was "to witness and to testify.
If the well inebriated strangers standing next to me are reading this, "41 Shots" isn't a drinking game. A double from the "Born in the U. On the previous two tours to Australia, which were his first here since , we saw the band augmented by horns, singers, and Tom Morello. That was fabulous, but, as an alternate, it's been tremendous to hear the core E Street Band in all their sonic splendor.
For the encore Bruce dedicated "Jungleland" to Brett, a Canadian who traveled far and wide and had never heard it in concert. Bruce then added that he'll be seeing Canada soon. Make of that what you will. Maybe it means a gig? Maybe it means he'll be taking the wife and kids on a driving holiday? The band completely hit it out of the park, and the gig will go down in the annals as one of the best that ever happened in the river city.
The caravan has gone. The rock 'n' roll citadel has left its temporary location. Who wouldn't want to spend Valentine's Day with Bruce Springsteen?
This week, the citadel of rock 'n' roll has temporarily relocated to Brisbane, Australia. The set opened with "New York City Serenade," augmented by an eight-piece string section. Spellbinding, this has become one of the signature moments of the tour. The full house was in a particularly joyful mood as Bruce and the band kicked it to a rousing and rare "Lucky Town. Delivering a "Valentine's Day triple," he offered some sage advice on what can be "the third loneliest day of the year": As the song twisted and turned, Bruce gave it his all before confiding, "the band has this all fucked up!
To say his singing in the final furlong was magnificent would be underselling it. The song was saved, and with great humor Bruce added, "Before you commit suicide, let me play you this next one. Brisbane might have to sharpen up its skills in the pit, but the fans got a crowd-surfing Bruce back to the stage and in one piece eventually. With a setlist already littered with rarities and tour premieres, Bruce moved the intensity up a notch with "Youngstown," "Candy's Room," "She's the One," and "Because the Night.
The bite in his lead lines, coupled with a mix of sparsity and that word again intensity, has few peers. His playing on "Candy's Room" was stunning, while Nils left us in awe during breakout pieces on "Youngstown" and "Because the Night. Still in Valentine's mode, Bruce pulled out a jaw-dropping "Secret Garden" that swayed until the band hit a groove. Talk about "you complete me"… what a setlist! We know the Isley Brothers wrote "Shout," and it's been played by a million bands since.
But tonight Queenslanders saw the most incredible version of the song performed in this country since the Godfather of Australian rock 'n' roll, Johnny O'Keefe, tore it to shreds with the Delltones, back in the mids. Tonight delivered pretty much everything you'd expect at a Springsteen gig. Hits, rarities, requests, and a man and his band who are prepared night after night to go out on a limb and create magic.
With his James Brown-style cape at his feet, Bruce urged us to join him on Thursday night for "another spectacular. There is no more complicated concert event in Australia than a show at Hanging Rock in the Macedon Ranges of Victoria. It gets built, it gets filled with concertgoers, it empties out, it gets taken apart, and kangaroos return to eat the grass and perhaps catch a buzz from so much spilled booze.
Such a massive, one-off production comes with risk. Will the weather hold? Will people drive an hour north of Melbourne en masse to see a show? Will the main act provide a performance that justifies so much time and effort? Will everyone tolerate the epic gridlock that follows a massive gathering in woop-woop land? To quote the bloke from Freehold: Yes, yes, yes, yes.
Tonight's show was a triumph. An event in the best sense of the word. Bruce, band, crowd — even the elements aligned: Rain seemingly triggered by the opening chords of an acoustic "The Promised Land" produced a rainbow that brought cheers. Ever hear a crowd of people over the age of ten cheer a rainbow? This was a stadium special on a glorious Saturday in bushland.
The best of Australia, the best of the U. Thankfully the rain didn't last as long as songs with "land" in them, as Bruce followed the quietly rousing opener with full-bore boot stompers "American Land" and "Badlands. It's gonna be a corker. After dedicating "Blinded by the Light" to "the Gudinskis" — a reference to the family of Hanging Rock concert promoter Michael Gudinski — Bruce pointed out how "Blinded" was "my only 1 song, and I didn't have it. What stayed the same — what always stays the same — was the protagonist's desperation "You know what the Boss man likes" to get good with his girl.
Bruce went on walkabout during "Hungry Heart," his ventures up a riser behind front GA giving him panoramic views of the Macedon Ranges and throngs sitting on Hanging Rock's gently sloping hill.
His mic stand at the lip of the pit gave him trouble throughout, but Bruce kept the pace, swaying and smiling like a man about to steal your wife. Thing went full Reagan-era retro with a delirious "Glory Days" that had Steve playing to what Bruce called "the Little Steven fan club" near the stage as the crowd bellowed every word.
Bruce started "Because the Night" as he did at the last Sydney show, repeating "Take me now…" several times before kicking the song into gear. Nils was his usual energetic and upbeat self all night, but here he got to howl at a rising full moon with a typically jaw-dropping guitar solo.
By now twilight was fading into night and "The Rising" cast the band in a familiar orange and red glow, "Can't see nothing in front of me…" delivering its nightly, numbing chill. How to follow the prayer-like "Rising" in the ancient mountains of Victoria, a place where the ghosts of our planet's oldest civilization linger in every gum tree and jagged hilltop? With a joyous song about a young man with a big advance, a woman who plays blind man's bluff and a father who never… did… understand.
With Jake beside them at the lip of the stage, the three hammed it up for the hundredth time, Jake's boyishness perfectly complementing the knuckleheaded tomfoolery of Bruce and Steve's Moe and Curly routine and it was all fresh and funny, still a ridiculous testament to rock 'n' roll rebellion.
And still my favorite main-set closer. Bruce plucked a sign for "Jungleland," and it was proven again that the bigger the stage, the higher Jake Clemons rises. His visage to the right of Springsteen as he plays the most famous sax solo in rock 'n' roll history is statuesque, the trance he puts himself in unbroken until Bruce gives him a hug at the solo's end.
Jake's an impossibly modest man for a musician of so many talents, but tonight's "Jungleland" offered inarguable proof of his continuing ascension to E Street Band legend.
The good people of Oz Harvest got a shout from a thankful Springsteen before he turned the key and "Born to Run" rumbled to life. A passing shower brought him out to the stage's edge to shut his eyes and feel the rain as women climbed on men's shoulders in preparation for "Dancing in the Dark. If you have a once-in-a-lifetime shot at taking a selfie on stage with Bruce Springsteen during a show in front of thousands of people, get it right the first time.
Chasing Bruce around the stage in a doomed attempt to reposition yourself for a second go-round makes you look silly. Bruce went on another extended walkabout for "Tenth Avenue Freeze-out," and "Shout" had hands flying and asses shaking. With a hearty "one more for Hanging Rock," Bruce jangled the opening chords to "Bobby Jean" and brought this high-wire spectacle of a day and night to a close. Or so we thought. Shooting a look from the rear of the Hanging Rock stage we've seen so many times before — a look that says "What do I have to do for you people?
People hugged, people cried — ten minutes after Bruce left the stage I passed a man still staring at center mic, his face awash with tears — and we all exulted in the glee of another promise fulfilled. Other than the tour opener in Perth, which featured a remarkable string of seven songs from , this Aussie tour has been notable for Performance Intensity over Setlist Eccentricity.
Die-hards will chew your ears off expressing their preference for the latter, but ten seconds of any night's "Badlands" settle the argument for the former. To speak the language of my Aussie brethren, many of whom spend summer in a cricket coma, this second of two shows in Sydney was a bloody beauty all-rounder.
Lights down at 7: Bruce got caught up in "Spirit in the Night" to the point where he had to run through the lyrics "Where was I? Janey said hey little brother…" after sprawling on the lip of the stage and wooing a besotted rail-hugger while Jake played sexy sax. The now-standard communal portion of the evening — "Out in the Street" into "Hungry Heart" — found Bruce smiling broadly and mugging with fans on the floor and front sections' edges.
I sometimes look at Springsteen at times like this and see a guy who's just woken up far away from home, threw cold water on his face, scarfed down a bowl of cereal, and found himself at the center of an adoring maelstrom. Bruce Springsteen may be the only man on the planet to whom surfing over a crowd is as everyday as going for a surf in the ocean before breakfast.
In Australia, at least. The night's first sign choice was a sixer more cricket terminology for you — it equates to a home run. The gorgeous falsetto of "The River" gave way to the menace of "Youngstown," a menace taken out and given a hiding by the first sublime Nils solo of the night. Bruce called for "The Promised Land" next, and the pit responded like convicts on a jail break. A sorta, kinda familiar thundering of Max's drums I'm one of those jerks who calls out what's about to be played like some kid's going to hand me a giant stuffed panda as a prize opened up into "Rendezvous.
Bruce called out for another beloved cast-off next, and "Be True" sounded equally robust, Clarence's roaring sax finale played with exuberance by Jake. Much of that refreshment got sprayed into the air at the count-off for "Working on the Highway," a hip-swaying olive branch for Aussies bemused by the previous rarities. Next, Roy's piano intro to "Because the Night" charged the crowd ,and Bruce, alone in a spotlight, ratcheted the tension by repeating "Take me now…" in slow succession.
There's a metaphor for the pent-up release that followed, but as this is a family publication, I'll refrain from detailing it.
Lots of hopping in the pit during another fired-up "Badlands. A raucous and ridiculous "Rosalita" closed the main set, with Jake, Bruce, and Steve doing their Three Stooges thing at center stage, the year-old tune showing not a hint of grey or shaky legs. After telling Sydneysiders "we love your support so far from home" and singing the praises of Foodbank NSW, the band unleashed "Born to Run" and it was party time.
With the house lights up and most sigh of the crowd on its feet, Bruce broke out another beloved song from the late '70s and smashed a fierce "Detroit Medley" that heaved and shook with River -era abandon.
By the time another jubilant "Shout" was in full force he stopped, bent over, and asked the Sydney crowd "Are you calling my name? After "Bobby Jean" seemed to close the show, Bruce reappeared with an acoustic guitar and harp gear and played a simple "Thunder Road" that tamed the crowd into singing along at Bruce's tempo. It was a gentle ending, at That locomotive travels next to Hanging Rock, an hour's drive north of Melbourne in the Macedon Ranges.
A full moon will be out. You have been warned. A commonly held perception of Australia's two largest cities — by Aussie blokes, at least — is that Sydney's the girl you'd take to Vegas, Melbourne's the one you'd take home to momma. Following a torrid show in Melbourne Saturday, Tuesday's first of two in Sydney had Bruce and the band seemingly poised to sweep Australia's glamour capitol off its feet with a grand gesture or two.
What we got were three hours of steel and smoke, heart and bone. Another fat-free extravaganza included one Aussie tour premier — Little Richard's "Long Tall Sally" — and 27 tried-and-true scorchers. Sydney was soaked by massive rainstorms throughout the day, so temperatures were manageable outside, but by the time Bruce swung the "Wrecking Ball" the pit radiated with bouncing, perspiring bodies.
It may not have been the most youthful of crowds, but tonight's energy was intense on the floor and in scattered chunks throughout the 21,capacity arena. Though now sporting a different corporate moniker, Qudos Bank Arena is the same facility Springsteen played in and To my ears it's home to a dense, vibrant sound that beats every other venue on this tour and turbocharges a band hitting on all cylinders. Steve stood in his familiar spot with arms crossed and eyes closed at the start, praying to the garage rock gods or perhaps meditating on the night's post-show dinner spread.
Garry's bass floated above, below and behind it all. At the halfway mark of this show summer tour of Australia and New Zealand, "Serenade" remains a high point creatively and emotionally every night and will be long remembered after the lads and lass have left these shores.
Turn the lights on! Bruce reached into the crowd for a "My Love Will Not Let You Down" sign and smoked it the song, not the sign and seemed genuinely hesitant to crowd surf during "Hungry Heart. Another sign brought bar band standard but rarely played "Long Tall Sally.
Looking at Steve throughout, Springsteen might well have been harking back to their days playing the church basements and parking lots along Route 9 before moving up to the bars of Asbury Park in the early '70s. A blistering "Wrecking Ball" kicked off the night's most intense stretch. Bruce made an unabashed appeal for that energy before "Mary's Place" — "Sydney, make me feel your spirit right now" — before unleashing "Candy's Room" and "She's the One" on a suspecting and highly worked-up crowd.
This night's blue-collar ethos reached its height with a pair of Born in the U. Bruce called out Nils at the end of "Because the Night" for a solo that had him spinning and our neck hairs standing on end.
On any given night anything can happen at a Springsteen show, but instead of a one-off setlist rarity or special guest, tonight's impossible-to-predict happening was a performance of "The Rising" that — you know where this is going — brought tears to my eyes and had the pit levitating.
No individual element made it so. It was a group effort that included band, crowd, and ghosts of those lost. Just another tiny miracle that's not listed on your ticket but is included in the price of admission. Jake stood tall and still, resurrecting Clarence's herculean solo while Bruce kept time with his right hand.
The usual encores got everybody dancing, and "Bobby Jean" brought the show to a heartfelt close at The day's downpours meant air thick with the smell of eucalyptus greeted us as we left the arena. After tonight's joyride with a finely tuned E Street Band and madly grinning Springsteen at the wheel, it felt like we should have been breathing in Turnpike tollbooth deep in the swamps of Jersey.
The place is ripe with good-looking men and women in their summer clothes. A DJ is spinning a mix of hip-hop and obscurities, typical hipster soundtrack.
A space for dancing in front of the DJ is vacant. Suddenly, like wolves howling at the scent of blood, a "Whoa-oh-oh-oh-oh" "Badlands" chant arises. The DJ, aware of a need to appease the howlers, drops the needle on "Hungry Heart," Max's drums popping like the fireworks that ended this second and final Melbourne show.
People in River Tour T-shirts converge on the dance floor from every corner of the bar, a full-throated "Got a wife in kids in Baltimore, Jack" obliterating all other sounds. The DJ wisely follows with "Dancing in the Dark" before setting loose a force he clearly doesn't understand: My cohorts and I scream words of longing and desperation like we're possessed by the Jersey Devil itself.
We smash into one another, screaming to the ceiling, laughing with joy. We're not seeking attention. We're at the mercy of a lingering force too raw to be tamed. A young blonde I've never seen before throws her arms around me, a temporary Wendy holding on for dear life, both of us charged by nearly three hours of a superhuman Springsteen.
The whole experience surreal, a dream, a possession. But it happened, and none of us will ever forget it. Which is a perfect way to describe night two in Melbourne. A you-had-to-be-there performance, one not defined by setlists or duration or letters home. A night in which a woman gasped "What's he doing? He's blasting expectations, again. He's replacing cynicism with glee, again.
He's shaking his ass so we shake our collective asses, again. He's pushing the boundaries of a year-old rock 'n' roller, again. He's sweating like a motherfucker, again. He's playing a catalog we know with religious fervour yet blowing our minds with songs' intensity and set placement, again.
And doing it in a way that feels like it's never been done before, like we're the beneficiaries of a miracle cure that's been smuggled through customs in the form of a New Jersey troubadour with a rockin' band. Most shows unfold in vivid sections, but tonight felt a song medley. Bruce took the stage in a River- era sky blue shirt at 7: Springsteen's shirt was already ready for wringing by the time a sharp "Out in the Street" had him asking "Where's the girl who wants to dance with the Mighty Max?
This was a Fun Show. Further proof was manifested by Bruce taking signs from the crowd for the first time on this tour. First up was "Sherry Darling," which when followed by "Hungry Heart" made for the ultimate River singalong trio. Jake was caught unaware shortly before his "Hungry Heart" solo and had to sprint — the man can move — to the walkway behind the front GA to play beside Bruce. He didn't quite get there, but then no one could catch Bruce on this night.
Like a boxer who sees the next punch coming, he anticipated the crowd's mood and either met or challenged it with each song, rarely taking more than a few seconds between songs. He must have moved too fast for himself when, after holding up a sign for "This Hard Land," he strapped on a harp rack and began playing "This Hard Land" harmonica, but from his guitar came the intro to "Glory Days.
Is it ass-shaking time? At its conclusion Bruce congratulated the crowd — "well done! Bruce tackled the lyrics to his beautiful ode to brotherhood with slightly off phrasing but cleared the slate with a blistering harmonica solo.
Throughout the pit eyes glistened. I'm not a fan of the massive video screen behind the band, but the interplay of busily sliding arms and Bruce's solitary form is enhanced by projection. The song ended with Bruce once again repeating "He's singing" while cool mist floated through blue spotlights across the stage.
Bruce always surprises — it's why we keep going back — but you'd be hard-pressed to find a more unlikely way to roar the E Street Band back up again than with Roy's piano intro leading to Springsteen's tour de force guitar work on the '78 version of "Prove It All Night.
It also had Steve drop his consigliere role and smash a monster solo. As in Adelaide, an intense "Trapped" rose from a deeper place and offered a cathartic chance to scream our heads off. Bruce showed his voice can still muster the bile required for "Youngstown," and Nils — incomparable, note-perfect Nils — took care of the rest. Bruce shouted to the band as the song ended, and I saw Roy waving his hand over his head to the rest of the band.
What did it mean? He next wandered to the lip of the pit, his shirt completely soaked through, for "My City of Ruins. From Sunday church to Texas desert we went as Max immediately kicked up a beat and Bruce growled, "Well buddy when I die throw my body in the back," and we were high-tailing it to the "Cadillac Ranch.
With Bruce and Steve flailing on acoustics while Nils and Garry stood on either side offering advice, the crowd got out jumper cables, attached them to their vocal cords, and began signing the song's melody en masse. Vroom vroom went the guitars and off we went, Steve flashing an embarrassed smile and Bruce saying "Thank you!
On a night of highlights, the final three songs of the main set — "Because the Night," "Badlands," and "Thunder Road" — may have been the pinnacle of a mountain we've been to many times before, only this time we pushed to a higher summit.
Exhausted, we shook the ground with sore feet and punched the air with arms wet from sunscreen and sweat. Bruce played the bulk of "Thunder Road" on the lip of the pit, the man and the guitar he learned how to make talk just above us but the music planted deep inside one and all.
Bruce thanked everyone for coming out to the two shows in Melbourne and for supporting his music, adding Australia is "the last place on Earth I can get a beer on the house. When my friend asked, "What's he doing? By the time Steve draped the "Boss" cape over him and Bruce pantomimed walking off stage, you almost wanted him to do just that, to take a load off, to make himself a sandwich and relax.
Another crazy-ass "Twist and Shout. We watched in awe. Until the song ended, and fireworks again burst over AAMI Park, the band took their bows and walked offstage and we could finally confirm with others that what we'd just witnessed was truly as good as it felt. Shit may indeed be fucked up as he said Thursday night, but not in this house, not on this night. This one bound young and old, hardcores and newbies, bogans and hipsters, Hawks and Magpies.
This one sent everyone out into the night as apostles, convinced they'd seen the show to end all shows… until Tuesday night in Sydney, when the ashes of Saturday night will be whisked away and the fire lit anew.
Exactly as it's always been. Sixteen songs into an at-times-shambolic first stadium show of this Australian tour, Bruce Springsteen leaned heavily on his mic stand above the pit of Melbourne's AAMI Park and spit out four words that tied up the state of our world in a tight, profane bow: So far in Australia Springsteen's reacted to the fucked-upness with statements of solidarity and blistering fightin' songs in combination.
Walking out at 7: It was a zippy little poke back at an administration seemingly hellbent on destroying American goodwill around the world — with Steve, Roy, and Garry laughing to his left — but not the most rousing kickoff for a crowd laced with bandana-and-white-t-shirt-wearing guys "They're cute," wrote Bruce in Born to Run and looking-for-a-dance girls.
Bruce hollered "We come from a land of immigrants! Of course it felt right — especially to this American ex-pat with Irish ancestors who passed through Ellis Island — but whether it was Melbourne's bright twilight, or AAMI Park's rugby pitch dimensions, or a bad platter of sushi backstage, the normally roaring E Street Band was a bit tempered.
The man can work miracles, but like all of us, he ain't getting any younger. And then came the piece de resistance of this tour to date, "New York City Serenade. Roy's plaintive piano flooded the stadium and we all eased into a gentle bath of sound. An honest-to-god breeze swept through the pit as Bruce crooned "He's singing…" over and over, the strings giving wing to the pleas of the song's narrator as Bruce whispered poetry over Garry's basslines. In my notepad I wrote, "puts all previous songs to shame.
A stretch of brilliance followed. A slow-boiled "Atlantic City" erupted in a hard, head-banging finish. Springsteen flashed a little windmill guitar to close a stomping "Death to My Hometown," the line "No dictators were crowned" once again growled with outlaw menace. A pair of questions broke the spell: He went silent, seemingly waiting for defiance. Thus began a race to finish that long-time concert attendees will recognize as the sort that leaves your face sore from continuous smiling.
Snicker if you like, but if a run of roadhouse rockers "Darlington County" and "Working on the Highway," sultry sing-along "I'm on Fire," carnal "Because the Night" and blistering "Badlands" don't put a grin on your puss, well, I can't help you, son.
When Springsteen released "Badlands" in there was no way he'd imagine the prescience of "Poor man wanna be rich, rich man wanna be king, and a king ain't satisfied 'til he rules everything," but there it was, capturing present-day concerns better than anything he's written since.
Everything about her was magnificent. You think you've heard every variation of "Shout" until on this night Bruce repeated "Listen to me…" over and over until it morphed into a showdown between James Brown and Sam Cooke. And then, with a mighty "We know you can shout, but can you twist? It may have been an embarrassing day to be an American in Australia, but as rockets' red glare mingled with Southern Hemisphere starlight it was a great goddamned night to be a Springsteen fan in the city of Melbourne.
Before Monday night's show, fans in Adelaide fans were discussing which songs belonged on Bruce Springsteen's perfect protest setlist. They should have just waited for the show, as nothing we came up with could beat the mastery of song arrangement that he delivered. From the first notes to the last, every selection was carefully thought out to deliver a message to us, to America, to the world. The songs are familiar, the words aren't new, but their placement in relation to other songs and the intensity of their delivery are what made this a hard pressed, condensed diamond of a show.
As the string section left one side of the stage, the accordions came on the other and Bruce made this proclamation: Tonight we want to add our voices to the thousands of Americans who are protesting at airports around our country the Muslim Ban and the detention of foreign nationals and refugees.
America is a nation of immigrants, and we find this anti-democratic and fundamentally un-American. This is an immigrant song! With that, "American Land" launched the show that will surely be known as the Adelaide Protest Show, Bruce's musical call to action. The words "the hands that built this country we're always trying to keep out" delivered the first shot straight over the bow.
The line "had to get away from those fools" was delivered with a sneer. As an American who chose to vacation in the farthest location from the U. Bruce dedicated "Trapped" next to "the detainees. I looked over the crowd and saw a young girl watching with tears streaming down her face.
Later a line in "Youngstown," "We gave our sons to Korea and Vietnam and now we wonder what they were dying for," made me wonder how many more tears will be shed. This is the one that gave a voice to the voiceless all those years ago. The stage went dark, one by one the musicians dropped off, until all that was left was one man, one voice, with a heartbeat drum telling a story of tragedy and anguish, finishing with a howl of pain and frustration that we all felt.
A moment of levity came when Bruce spotted a quartet in the audience dressed like the Honeymooners of '50s TV fame holding up a sign request for "Brown Eyed Girl. Hilarity ensued as Ralph Kramden took over the piano while Ed Norton shared one might say wrestled with Bruce for the microphone. Alice and Trixie sang back up with Little Steven.
This unplanned performance perfectly into the show narrative, tapping into the collective memory of the '50s as a time of American greatness — that is, unless you were a woman, black, gay, or poor. The protest rally continued with "Murder Incorporated" and a particularly strong "Death to My Hometown. As "Racing in the Street" began, Bruce raised his guitar up and held it for a long moment, like a general leading his troops to battle; it was a musical call to arms.
The lyrics captured the frustration of being powerless, the rage of a young man, a desire for something more that ends in either quiet despair or desperate action. A lump rose in my throat at the words "wrinkles round my baby's eye"; it causes me to wonder if we are too old for this fight. Haven't we already won these battles? Despair slips in, but it is met with the swell of piano notes, music so beautiful my soul aches.
We aren't too old for this fight, we have seen it before, and we will not back down. The rest of the show hammered home the message: He's not backing down from this fight, and we never should. Bruce performed solo, his voice and guitar the only sound in the crowded arena. It was a pure, heartfelt expression of love that surrounded us and lifted us up, a prayer of beautiful harmony and promise.
We are in this together. Before moving on to the ecstatic encore, which brought guest Richie Sambora to the stage for two songs, we had the words of the original fight song, "Born to Run," ringing in our ears.
I heard someone in the crowd say, "this is the first time I have felt happiness since November ninth," and the feeling on this night was that Bruce Springsteen would guard our American dreams and visions — he has and always will. You can tell a lot about a show by how Bruce Springsteen greets the audience at the start. And here I thought an opening post-"NYC Serenade" of course couldn't get any more scorching than night two, but along comes Bruce to outdo himself again with "Night.
This time around, the Aussies had no choice but to stand, especially when Bruce whipped out a rare mid-set "Glory Days," and especially when he bellowed, "Can we get these folks in Perth dancing? Can we get them asses out of those seats?! It was just one of those nights. You had to love Bruce and Stevie's banter: I don't got no watch. I'm so damn jet-lagged I don't know what fucking time it is.
Does Perth know what time it is?! Do you know what time it is?! We were less than 90 minutes in. But no, there were so many more highlights to burn through, including the first-ever Down Under performance of "Drive All Night," transcendent as always. Those who predicted a third night in a small venue might be treated to full River performance weren't dead-on, but there were more songs from the album here than the previous two nights. Bruce introduced a balls-to-the-goofy-wall "I'm Goin' Down" with an odd little story about how he tends to get in fights at home that end with him being asked, "Who do you think you are?!
The energy did not wane for even one second all night long, straight up. I can't remember the last time Bruce and the Band were in such high spirits from beginning to end. Good, then on your drive home, if you see a spare kangaroo, I want you to pull over by the side of the road, get out of your car, and tell them you've just seen…" — you know the rest.
When walking out of MetLife 3 this past year, many concurred that Bruce had very few other three-night stands that could compare. Yet in classic E Street fashion, his very next three-night stand — less than 10 shows later — every bit matched those now-legendary Jersey evenings.
No records were broken for show length, but you know what they say about quality over quantity. As usual, right when diehards believe they've witnessed a culmination of sorts, Bruce just dials it up even further. Fifty-eight different songs over the first three shows of this Summer '17 Tour — that's more than most bands get to on an entire tour — and they looked like they could've kept going for hours more. Indeed, it seems like glory days will never pass this band by.
In Bruce's own words: If this start is a sign of what's to come, then get ready, Eastern Australia and New Zealand — the righteous fire of E Street is coming for you, baby. Seriously mate, why do you do it? The mysterious ways of Bruce Springsteen's mind and soul that leave us guessing and then gasping for breath.
Pre-show prognostications turned ludicrous by a guttural "1! Thinking replaced by feeling, the familiar made celebratory. Our incessant quest to figure this guy out, to know what's coming over the rise, always falling short but our expectations consistently being exceeded.
Tonight was a drag race. A feint in the form of Official Show Opener "New York City Serenade" before a cascade of lights, roaring engines and a rocket ride down rubber-blackened tarmac began with "Prove It All Night" and continued to genuinely rousing show closer "Rosalita. Out of 26 songs, a remarkable 16 were not played during Sunday's Aussie Tour opener. And that number 26? This was a concert of economy, a concentrated treat, fat-free and vastly entertaining. Much will be made of its length — lights down at 7: Whereas Sunday's show featured Springsteen's most direct proclamation of opposition to an incoming presidential administration, tonight's was nearly spoken-word-free.
For however much he let the songs themselves speak his truth, Springsteen also seemed looser, more at ease, and spent a lot of time reaching down into the crowd, holding hands, high-fiving, and most obviously concluding "Hungry Heart" with a ride-of-a-thousand-fingers courtesy of eager pit denizens.
If Sunday's show was in response to external forces, the intrusion of the wider world, tonight's existed solely within the comparatively small confines of Perth Arena. By expressing solidarity with the "new American resistance" on Sunday Bruce had done his job as a leader of progressive politics in the U. Springsteen had a better crowd tonight, too, either the result of it being Australia Day Eve or that tickets for this show were the first to go on sale and sell out quickly. It's always encouraging when an anonymous collection of string players receive applause as they take their seats on a darkened stage.
That enthusiasm was rewarded with another jaw-dropping "NYC Serenade," its grandiose piano and strings contrasting beautifully with Springsteen's collection of romantic tragics from a long-ago time and place.
His newfound devotion to this song continues to shock and thrill in equal measure. Bruce applauded his string section and shook their hands as they left the stage. After a hearty "Good evening, Western Australia," rubber met road with a rollicking "Prove It All Night" that delivered guitar face aplenty and a pulsing face-off between Bruce and Max.
In what would prove typical, Bruce gave no pause before slamming the band into higher gear with a galloping "My Love Will Not Let You Down" that had Nils and Steven flanking Bruce for a noisy and nostalgic triple-shot of six-strings. An exuberant "Out in the Street" was followed by ten songs — ten — not heard Sunday night, starting with "Hungry Heart" and ending with an audibled "I'm on Fire.
Bruce's voice froze up halfway through "Born to Run" but recovered during a cape-less "Shout.
The War on Poverty [This is a huge and controversial topic that may be too large and complex for a History & Timeline ricksteineralaska.com the mids, Freedom Movement activists hold a wide range of views on LBJ's War on Poverty program (WoP): Some Movement activists, particular at the local level, see it as a sincere effort to alleviate poverty and an opportunity for them to significantly better. Archives and past articles from the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, and ricksteineralaska.com 🔥Citing and more! Add citations directly into your paper, Check for unintentional plagiarism and check for writing mistakes.