In a time when concerts may feel like a distant memory, I find myself thinking of the ones I’ve seen — either in person or on film — that stands out as a reminder to keep me company during the waiting. With that, let’s look back at a career-defining, career-inspiring concert that was arguably undefeated among Gods and humans. I’m talking about the cold, presumably damp, and absolutely electrifying night of Nov. 18, 1975 at Hammersmith Odeon (as it was then called) in London, England. This is the site where a virtually unknown (at least to British audiences at the time), Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band would take a crowd of 3,000+ (seated) souls and usher them into the upper gates of holiness, known as New Jersey.
Brian Fallon has announced rescheduled tour dates for next year.Read More “Brian Fallon Announces Rescheduled Tour Dates”
The first time I ever heard American Slang was in my freshman college dorm room, just a week or two from the end of school, on a gorgeous April spring day. Now, if I’d been a law-abiding listener, the wait to hear the new album from The Gaslight Anthem—their follow-up to 2008’s acclaimed The ’59 Sound—still would have been the better part of two months. American Slang didn’t officially hit the streets until June 15. But 2010 was maybe the golden age of album leaks, and as a broke college student with a budget for little more than gas and the occasional midnight McDonald’s run with my roommate, that fact was very good news for me. It also meant that American Slang, a bulletproof summer soundtrack album, got to serve as the bookend to my first year of college, and to all the anticipation I was feeling as four months of summer approached.
When The ’59 Sound broke in 2008, The Gaslight Anthem quickly became one of the most buzzed-about rock bands in all the circles I was a part of online. Here was a band that respected classic rock traditions and made them sound new again; a band willing to pilfer from their influences in the most loving manner possible; a band whose frontman was, perhaps, worthy of being called “this generation’s Bruce Springsteen.” All that hype only became louder and louder throughout 2009 and into the early part of 2010, which meant that by the time Gaslight announced their new record, excitement for it was through the roof. A title and an album cover that seemed to promise another sweeping classic-rock-styled masterpiece? Well, who could resist that?Read More “The Gaslight Anthem – American Slang”
Fallon points at the floor of the café, a collage of album sleeves. “That’s what I feel like I am,” he says. “But also books and TV shows, people, and places I’ve been. I feel like that’s what makes me up. It just comes out. Everybody has influences, even if a lot of people pretend they don’t. I’m not about trying to be original with every new thing. I’m not like: ‘I was born fully formed with all my ideas and I didn’t get this from anybody.’”
In 2018, just as Fallon was beginning to conceptualise his next solo move, The Gaslight Anthem regrouped to tour The ’59 Sound in its entirety to celebrate the LP’s 10th birthday. The experience was enormously validating at times but it also steeled his resolve to carry on under his own steam. The run, which featured dates on the east coast of the US, as well as in the UK and Europe, stirred complicated emotions. “It was not fun,” he says, with emphasis.