Bruce Springsteen

Greatest Hits [2009 Wal-Mart Exclusive]

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Released as a Wal-Mart exclusive in January 2009 -- its exclusivity causing an uproar upon its announcement in late 2008, as plenty of critics thought the pro-union Springsteen should have little to do with Wal-Mart, an argument that ignores plenty of sad corporate realities of the new millennium -- Greatest Hits is the third Springsteen hits comp to appear in America and the first to be billed to Bruce & the E Street Band. This designation means that the slim 12-track collection contains nothing from Tunnel of Love through The Ghost of Tom Joad, or Nebraska and Devils & Dust -- those were solo Springsteen, one and all. There are also no new tracks and nothing unexpected, just nine big hits from the golden age of classic rock -- "Rosalita" through "Born in the U.S.A." -- with two cuts from The Rising and "Radio Nowhere" added for good measure. It's not an imaginative collection but it's not bad, either: it's a collection targeted at a general audience, those who would pick it up at a Wal-Mart, nothing more or less. It's so basic and unassuming that it's hard to imagine why anybody would get worked up about it, really.

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