Review #150: Nebraska, Bruce Springsteen

Karla Clifton
2 min readAug 12, 2021

#150: Nebraska, Bruce Springsteen

Nebraska is sort of the sister album of Born in the U.S.A., #142. The RS blurb says that he wrote all of these songs in the same “fit of inspiration,” and just grouped them together by which ones sounded right.

However, this one was released two years before Born in the U.S.A., which I think is just crazy. I would want to put my exciting record out first, not my lame acoustic record. Oops, am I showing my hand too early?

I’m kidding (sort of). These are all very pretty and interesting songs — in fact, it was natural for me to listen to this one right after hearing John Prine’s debut. Bruce says in his memoir that they’re meant to be “black bedtime stories.”


“Nebraska” — I tried to listen to this album on my cell phone, but the harmonica on this nearly blew out my speakers, so I put headphones on.

“Atlantic City” — Loved the echo on this.

“Mansion On the Hill” — This was the point where the album sort of started winning me over.

“Johnny 99” — His falsetto wails are yikes, but I love how big and heartfelt these ballads are. Johnny goes to jail!

“Highway Patrolman” — Very pretty, I love that all of these songs are about people — very country-inspired.

“State Trooper” — Lot of cop songs.

“Open All Night” — An electric guitar!

“Reason to Believe” — The rest of these may be “black bedtime stories,” but this one is just nice and pretty.


“My Father’s House” — Look, the truth is I’ve been bored this whole time. It’s nice to listen to passively, but not so fun for me to analyze. This one was the one I was bored the most by.


Yes. This album is not nearly good enough to warrant being here. I mean, it’s great and beautiful, but Bruce Springsteen is currently taking up a full 1% of this list, which is just unacceptable.

Since I think we need something a bit heavier here, I’m suggesting the Black Keys’ Thickfreakness, which is grimy and loud and a little bit gross. Yet another band that is nowhere to be seen on the RS 500 list, since Bruce is hogging up all the space.

Review #149: John Prine, John Prine

Review #151: Faith, George Michael