April 27th, 2012, 11:07 am · · posted by BEN WENER, THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Another soul-stirring L.A. Sports Arena show Thursday from the Greatest Living American Rock Institution, and another tremendous performance from his venerable group, the E Street Band, now expanded to double its original size thanks to a full complement of background vocalists and horn players — including Jake Clemons, nephew of the Big Man himself, who again and again did right by his uncle’s indelible tenor sax solos.
Without sounding like I’ve taken leave of my critical faculties and fallen into an abyss of gushing hyperbole, this opener of a two-night stand was seriously one for the local concert history books. In a quarter-century of seeing Bruce Springsteen live in Southern California, I’ve experienced more sheer jubilation only in peak moments at the Seeger Sessions show at the Greek, and I’ve only felt such deeply resonant relevance once before, when he played a Rising-heavy set at the Forum not long after 9/11.
This one may have been even better than that; I should get some sleep and perhaps gain some perspective. I doubt I’ll change my assessment — there were just too many memorable moments that set this appearance apart from so many other Boss bashes in recent years.
Photo by Kelly A. Swift, for the Orange County Register.