Fan-assembled “unofficial” collection to also get a proper “official” release on forthcoming Boss box.
By Uncle Blurt
The news announced this week about Bruce Springsteen prepping a deluxe box set of his 1989 album The River was certainly expected, given that he’s already done boxes for both Born To Run and Darkness on the Edge of Town. Nestled among the details, however, was a tantalizing tidbit: among the previously unreleased material will be a disc devoted to the 1979 River forerunner titled The River: Single Album, comprising key alternate takes of album material as well as the totally unreleased song “Cindy.” And longtime Boss fans and collectors get that significance, for that single album (the final version of The River was 2LP) has circulated in the underground previously as The Ties That Bind including a remastered version (by the JEMS folks) of the 39-min. bootleg as recently as 2011.
Now, courtesy of archival site Big O zine, you can download an MP3 version of that remastered boot along with artwork for printing out.
Apparently Big O will only have the material posted for about a week and a half, so if you want to listen to it streaming or grab the MP3s, don’t wait. The full tracklisting is below. As one of the compilers notes, of the tracks, “ “Cindy” is the one major River outtake that Bruce is still sitting on. The alternate verse in “The Price You Pay” remains lost. The rockabilly “You Better Not Touch” has never seen the light of day, nor the double-tracked vocal take of “To Be True.” “Stolen Car” is a different take to the one on Tracks and even “The Ties That Bind,” “The River” and “I Wanna Marry You” are each alternate takes or mixes from the released versions. “Hungry Heart” and now “Loose Ends” are the most like their official selves, but still distinct.”