There’s clearly a wistful high quality to Springsteen’s narration, noting, “Age brings perspective” and that because the years go by, there’s an acute consciousness that “There’s solely a lot time left.”
Nonetheless, as he states on the outset, “In spite of everything this time, I nonetheless really feel that burning want to speak,” which of late has meant longform display displays of his music — with the Netflix presentation of “Springsteen on Broadway,” the low-key “Western Stars” and now this celebration that includes his longtime collaborators, once more working with filmmaker Thom Zimny.
Shot in wonderful black and white, “Letter to You” showcases the shorthand these musicians have developed working collectively, as they rehearse and carry out songs from Springsteen’s newest album, the 20th produced in his exceptional profession. The interplay displays a course of honed over a long time in pursuit of a shared mission — on this case, a lifelong dedication to rock ‘n roll.
The brand new footage of the complete band at work — recording its first album collectively in six years — is judiciously augmented by clips from Springsteen’s musical youth, driving dwelling simply how a lot floor has been coated and time elapsed since “Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J.” and “Born to Run.”
Springsteen has at all times been a poet at coronary heart, punctuating his music throughout marathon dwell performances with deeply private accounts of his life and experiences. If age has lent perspective, as he states, these interludes stay no much less haunting and religious, as he discusses those who he has misplaced (Clarence Clemons, RIP), the band’s “collective soul” and religion within the easy beliefs that present the prescription for ” life and a humane society.”
Springsteen is hardly the one music star to seek out further avenues of expression via movie by way of hungry-for-content streaming providers — witness Beyoncé, who has been notably artistic on that rating — however his willingness to maintain stretching and experimenting appears particularly admirable when, on the age of 71, he has few artistic mountains left to climb.
With heat and nostalgia, “Letter to You” forges a hyperlink between the previous and the current. Maybe foremost, although, the documentary buttresses the purpose that in relation to ardour to speak via music, in spite of everything these years, Bruce Springsteen and his mates are nonetheless on hearth.
“Bruce Springsteen’s Letter to You” premieres Oct. 23 on Apple TV+.