The Boss’s return to the mythic isn’t a process of losing touch. In fact, it could be proof that he has actually maintained an uncanny sense of communication with the people and the times. In the context of 2012, myths might truly be the most immediately legible mode of conveying his messages. It’s the image-saturated digital era, the era where we more than ever conceive of and communicate about our world in fictions, in fantasies. And at the same time, it’s a year where, as the middle class continues to be threatened, people like to talk about the American Dream, long the central topic of both romantic and realist Springsteen, is most endangered. It’s an era in need of some myths. Tellingly, people sit down during the straightforward, direct “Jack of All Trades,” but stomp along to the fury of “Death to My Hometown.”
Some really excellent Bruce-ism by Ryan Leas, at GQ.