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Bruce Springsteen: The River (Columbia)

Ira Robbins, Trouser Press, January 1981

A SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE sketch of a few seasons back poked fun at Roy Orbison by reducing him to a caricature: motionless stance and ever-present shades. With this overdue collection — given added weight by being a double album — Bruce Springsteen has proven himself to be equally typecast. Unable or unwilling to cast off the cliches of his past records, The River's attempt to Make a Statement is buried in an avalanche of repetition and evident lack of inspiration.

Total word count of piece: 820