Click to return to Dave’s Music Database home page.

Released: October 10, 1980

Rating: 4.304 (average of 18 ratings)

Genre: heartland rock

Quotable: --

Album Tracks, Disc 1:

  1. The Ties That Bind [3:34]
  2. Sherry Darling [4:03]
  3. Jackson Cage [3:04]
  4. Two Hearts [2:45]
  5. Independence Day [4:50]
  6. Hungry Heart [3:19]
  7. Out in the Street [4:17]
  8. Crush on You [3:10]
  9. You Can Look But You Better Not Touch [2:37]
  10. I Wanna Marry You [3:30]
  11. The River [5:01]

Album Tracks, Disc 2:

  1. Point Blank [6:06]
  2. Cadillac Ranch [3:03]
  3. I’m a Rocker [3:36]
  4. Fade Away [4:46]
  5. Stolen Car [3:54]
  6. Ramrod [4:05]
  7. The Price You Pay [5:29]
  8. Drive All Night [8:33]
  9. Wreck on the Highway [3:54]
All songs written by Bruce Springsteen.

Total Running Time: 82:58


sales in U.S. only 2.5 million *
sales in U.K. only - estimated 300,000
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 10 million

* Actually certified for sales of 5 million by the RIAA, since they count double albums for twice the sales.


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 1 4
peak on U.K. album chart 2

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Hungry Heart (11/8/80) #5 US, #28 UK
  • Fade Away (2/7/81) #20 US, #14 AR
  • Sherry Darling (2/81) --
  • I’m a Rocker (3/21/81) #42 AR
  • Cadillac Ranch (3/28/81) #48 US
  • Point Blank (4/4/81) #20 AR
  • Ramrod (4/11/81) #30 AR
  • The River (6/13/81) #35 UK


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more.

The River
Bruce Springsteen
“Imbedded within the double-disc running time of The River is a single-disc album that follows up on the themes and sound of Darkness on the Edge of Town - wide-screen, mid-tempo rock and stories of the disillusionment of working-class life and the conflicts within families. In these songs, which include the title track, Independence Day, and Point Blank, Bruce Springsteen's world view is just as dire as it had become on Darkness, but less judgmental. ‘Independence Day,’ for example, is a father-and-son ballad that has little of the anger of its hard rock counterpart on Darkness, Adam Raised a Cain. Springsteen's heroes again seek to overcome their crushing troubles through defiance and by driving around, and though The River repeats the soured love theme of ‘Racing in the Street,’ he also posits romance as a possible escape, sometimes combining it with one of the other solutions, as on the eight-plus-minute Drive All Night. But there is also another album lurking within The River, and it is a more lighthearted pop/rock collection of short, sometimes humorous songs like Sherry Darling and I'm a Rocker. At times Springsteen combines elements of the two, as on Out in the Street, perhaps the album's quintessential song, a catchy, up-tempo number that sounds like something from the early '60s and echoes the theme of the Vogues' 1966 hit ‘Five O' Clock World.’ Hungry Heart, which became Springsteen's first Top Ten hit, combines a rollicking musical track with a more sober lyrical theme that emphasizes longing over disappointment. But a better guide to Springsteen's development are the songs Stolen Car and the album-closing Wreck on the Highway, gentle, moody ballads imbued with a sense of hopelessness that anticipate his next record, Nebraska” (Ruhlmann).

Review Source(s):

Related DMDB Links:

Previous Album: Darkness on the Edge of Town (1978) Bruce Springsteen’s DMDB page Next Album: Nebraska (1982)

Last updated March 29, 2008.