Devils & Dust

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Devils & Dust
Studio album by Bruce Springsteen
Released April 26, 2005 (2005-04-26)
Recorded 1996–2004
Genre Rock, folk rock
Length 50:55
Label Columbia
Producer Brendan O'Brien
Bruce Springsteen chronology
The Essential Bruce Springsteen
Devils & Dust
Hammersmith Odeon London '75
Singles from Devils & Dust
  1. "Devils & Dust"
    Released: March 28, 2005
  2. "All the Way Home"
    Released: October 31, 2006
Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic (81/100) [1]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[2]
Robert Christgau A−[3]
PopMatters 4.5/5 stars[4]
Rolling Stone 4.5/5 stars[5]

Devils & Dust is the thirteenth studio album by American recording artist Bruce Springsteen, and his third acoustic album (after Nebraska and The Ghost of Tom Joad). It was released on April 25, 2005 in Europe and on April 26, 2005, in the United States. It debuted at number one the US Billboard 200 album chart.


Springsteen was very open about the fact that many of the songs from Devils & Dust dated back a decade or more.[6] Springsteen wrote the song "All the Way Home" for Southside Johnny to use in his album Better Days which was released in 1991.[6] The songs "Long Time Comin'" and "The Hitter" were written and performed during Springsteen's solo Ghost of Tom Joad Tour in 1996.[6] "Devils & Dust" is also known to have been written previously, and was featured in soundchecks during The Rising Tour beginning in the summer of 2003 and the following year during the Vote for Change Tour in late 2004.[6] (Springsteen had "Devils & Dust" on his set list for at least one Vote for Change show, but at the last moment decided to perform a 12 string guitar rendition of the "Star Spangled Banner", which he would later release for free through his official website).[6]

Release and promotion[edit]

On March 28, 2005, the title track was featured as an exclusive "first listen" on[7] The next day it was released for purchase on the iTunes music store.[7] The album was also released in the DualDisc format.[8] This puts the regular album on one side of the disc, and special content, like 5.1 surround sound and videos on the other side of the disc in DVD format.[8] The DVD side of the disk features Springsteen performing and commenting on the writing/creation of "Devils and Dust", "Long Time Comin'", "Reno", "All I'm Thinkin' About", and "Matamoros Banks". Lyrics to the songs accompany the playing of the Surround Sound portion in a karaoke style.[8] Springsteen's solo Devils & Dust Tour commenced upon the release of the album.[9]

The marketing was successful. It granted Springsteen his seventh number one—and fourth number one debut—on the Billboard album chart, his second for an album containing only previously unreleased content and his first ever without the E Street Band.[10] After the initial release period, however, sales quieted down; as of February 2006 it had attained gold status in the United States, where it has sold 650,000 copies as of November 2008.[10]

Starbucks had been considered a possible retail outlet for the album, as it had accounted for about a quarter of all sales for the recently successful Ray Charles's Genius Loves Company.[11] Starbucks, however, declined to sell copies of Springsteen's new album, sparking some headlines.[11] Starbucks rejected the album not only because of the song "Reno", but because of stances that Springsteen had taken on corporate politics and Springsteen not granting approval for a cobranded disc and promotional deal that prominently featured the Starbucks name.[11] Springsteen's label, Columbia Records, balked when the idea was floated, citing the blue-collar champion's well-known opposition to merchandising his music.[11] "There were a number of factors involved...[Lyrics] was one of the factors, but not the only reason," Ken Lombard, president of Starbucks Entertainment, told Reuters.[11] At a concert at the Tower Theater in Philadelphia, Springsteen introduced "Reno" by joking that the album would be available "at Dunkin' Donuts and Krispy Kreme stores everywhere."[12]

Springsteen received five Grammy Award nominations for this work, three for the song "Devils & Dust", Song of the Year, Best Rock Song, and Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance, and two for the album as a whole, Best Contemporary Folk Album and Best Long Form Music Video.[13] His sole award came for Best Solo Rock Vocal, an award he garnered in previous years for "Code of Silence" and "The Rising".[13] During the February 8, 2006, Grammy telecast, Springsteen gave a live solo performance of "Devils & Dust", adding on "Bring 'em home" at the finish, then immediately turned and left the stage without staying to receive his partial standing ovation.[13]

Track listing[edit]

All songs are written by Bruce Springsteen.

No. Title Length
1. "Devils & Dust"   4:58
2. "All the Way Home"   3:38
3. "Reno"   4:08
4. "Long Time Comin'"   4:17
5. "Black Cowboys"   4:08
6. "Maria's Bed"   5:35
7. "Silver Palomino"   3:22
8. "Jesus Was an Only Son"   2:55
9. "Leah"   3:32
10. "The Hitter"   5:53
11. "All I'm Thinkin' About"   4:22
12. "Matamoros Banks"   4:00



Chart (2005) Peak
US Billboard 200[14] 1


  1. ^ "Devils & Dust". Retrieved 2014-09-22. 
  2. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine (2005-04-26). "Devils & Dust - Bruce Springsteen | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  3. ^ "CG: Artist 5142". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 2014-01-15. 
  4. ^ "Bruce Springsteen: Devils & Dust - PopMatters Music Review". Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  5. ^ "Devils & Dust: Bruce Springsteen". Rolling Stone. 2014-02-11. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Bruce Almighty". The New York Times. 2005-05-06. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  7. ^ a b "Springsteen Single To Premiere Monday". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  8. ^ a b c "Devils & Dust [DualDisc] by Sony, Bruce Springsteen | 827969390023 | DualDisc - CD/DVD | Barnes & Noble". 2014-01-30. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  9. ^ "Bruce Conquers Europe With 'Devils & Dust' Tour". Billboard. 2005-07-13. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  10. ^ a b "Chart Watch Extra: What A Turkey! The 25 Worst-Selling #1 Albums - Chart Watch". Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  11. ^ a b c d e "Starbucks Puts Lid On Springsteen CD". Billboard. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  12. ^ "Entertainment | Coffee chain bans Springsteen CD". BBC News. 2005-05-06. Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  13. ^ a b c "Bruce Springsteen". Retrieved 2014-02-19. 
  14. ^ "Bruce Springsteen Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Bruce Springsteen. Retrieved 2013-09-18.
Preceded by
...Something to Be by Rob Thomas
Billboard 200 number-one album
May 8, 2005 – May 14, 2005
Succeeded by
With Teeth by Nine Inch Nails
Preceded by
Trouble by Akon
UK number one album
May 8, 2005 – May 14, 2005
Succeeded by
Trouble by Akon