Bruce Springsteen

Studio Quality Built In

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Studio Quality Built In is an eight-track LP, six of whose recordings are outtakes from the Born in the U.S.A. sessions. Four of those songs -- "This Hard Land," "Frankie," "Murder Incorporated," and "My Love Will Not Let You Down" -- did not appear on the final album, though a take of "Murder Incorporated" eventually turned up on Greatest Hits, which also featured a re-recording of "This Hard Land." Both songs were lyrically harder edged than much of the material that did make it onto Born in the U.S.A. "Frankie," one of Springsteen's more impressive meditations on friendship, had been considered for several albums and apparently almost made it this time. It would be a credit to any album on which it appeared. "My Love Will Not Let You Down" probably was left off the album because of its similarity in tone and tempo to "Dancing in the Dark." But it might have been just as big a hit. Side Two contains the unedited versions of the "Born in the U.S.A." and "Glory Days" master takes (there's a longer jam in the former, an extra verse in the latter), plus live performances of "Hungry Heart" and "Dancing in the Dark" done at the final warm-up show for the Born in the U.S.A. Tour, June 21, 1984, at the Village in Lancaster, PA. Sound quality of the studio material is excellent, though the live tracks are poorly recorded.