The Promise (Bruce Springsteen album)

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The Promise
Bruce Springsteen - The Promise.jpg
Compilation album by
ReleasedNovember 16, 2010 (2010-11-16)
Recorded1977–1978, 2010
GenreRock, heartland rock
ProducerBruce Springsteen, Jon Landau
Bruce Springsteen chronology
Working on a Dream
The Promise
Wrecking Ball

The Promise is an album by American singer-songwriter Bruce Springsteen, released November 16, 2010 on Columbia Records.[1] The album is a collection of previously unreleased songs recorded during the Darkness on the Edge of Town sessions in 1977–1978 with modern vocals and additional instrumentation recorded in 2010. It was released in 2CD and 3LP formats.[2] The album is also available as part of the box set The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story.[3][4] The two-CD version of the release entered the UK Albums Chart at number 7.[5] It had been in production for many years and was originally scheduled to be released for the 30th anniversary in 2008. The Promise debuted at #16 on the Billboard 200, while the box set, The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story, debuted at #27.[6]

The album features one of the last appearances of Clarence Clemons before his death in June 2011. Clemons is featured on the song "Save My Love", which was the only song on the album completely re-recorded by Springsteen and the E Street Band for the project.


On November 16, 2010, Springsteen performed "Because the Night" and "Save My Love" with Steven Van Zandt, Roy Bittan and the Roots on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (along with a cover of Willow Smith's "Whip My Hair" with Fallon posing as Neil Young).[7] Songs from the album were performed during Springsteen's Wrecking Ball Tour in 2012–2013.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[9]
BBC Music(favorable)[10]
The Guardian5/5 stars[11]
Los Angeles Times(favorable)[12]
Mojo5/5 stars[13]
Q4/5 stars[14]
Pitchfork Media(9.5/10)[16]
PopMatters7/10 stars[17]
Uncut5/5 stars[18]

Upon its release, The Promise received acclaim from most music critics.[8] At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 94, based on 17 reviews, which indicates "universal acclaim".[8]

Allmusic gave it four and a half stars; they stated that, "The Promise stands on its own as a great Bruce Springsteen record; it feels finished, focused, and, above all, offers more proof that Springsteen is one of the greatest rock and pop songwriters" although stating that "The Promise" was the only track that might have added something to the original Darkness on the Edge of Town album.[9] BBC Music had a favorable review and stated "The Promise is as compelling an advert for the Boss’s beautiful, blue-collar soul as you’re likely to find outside of the hits; an indispensable portrait of an artist at the top of his game."[10]

Commercial performance[edit]

The Promise debuted at #16 on the Billboard 200.[6] While not selling as well as his previous studio albums on the American charts, the set did well on the European charts (with first week worldwide sales of over 187,000 units), opening at No. 1 in Germany, Spain, and Norway. It also charted at No. 4 in The Netherlands, Denmark and Ireland, No. 5 in Austria, No. 7 in the United Kingdom and No. 9 in Switzerland.[19]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Bruce Springsteen, except where noted.

Disc One
1."Racing in the Street ('78)"6:49
2."Gotta Get That Feeling"3:17
3."Outside Looking In"2:16
4."Someday (We'll Be Together)"5:35
5."One Way Street"4:19
6."Because the Night (Springsteen, Patti Smith)"3:25
7."Wrong Side of the Street"3:34
8."The Brokenhearted"5:19
10."Candy's Boy"4:38
Disc Two
1."Save My Love"2:36
2."Ain't Good Enough for You"4:01
4."Spanish Eyes"3:50
5."It's a Shame"3:14
6."Come On (Let's Go Tonight)"2:18
7."Talk to Me"4:20
8."The Little Things (My Baby Does)"3:17
10."The Promise"5:52
11."City of Night"2:58
12."The Way (hidden track)"3:42




Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Denmark (IFPI Denmark)[30] Gold 10,000^
Ireland (IRMA)[31] Platinum 15,000^
Italy (FIMI)[32] Platinum 60,000*
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[33] Gold 30,000^
Sweden (GLF)[34] Platinum 40,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[35] Gold 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[36] Gold 250,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone



  1. ^ "The Promise [Doppel-CD]" (in German). Retrieved November 12, 2010.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Columbia Records to release Bruce Springsteen's 'The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story' Nov. 16". Archived from the original on 2012-12-05. Retrieved 2010-09-07.
  4. ^ "Springsteen Announces Massive 'Darkness' Set". Rolling Stone. 2010-08-26. Retrieved 2010-09-07.
  5. ^ "Official UK Albums Top 100". Official Charts Company. 2010-11-21. Retrieved 2010-11-21.
  6. ^ a b c "'The Promise: The Darkness On The Edge Of Town Story' Is Fastest Selling Box Set Of 2010".
  7. ^ "Bruce Springsteen Rocks 'Fallon' with 'Promise' Tracks, 'Whip My Hair'".
  8. ^ a b c "The Promise Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More at Metacritic". Metacritic. Retrieved 2010-12-03
  9. ^ a b Jurek, Thom. "Bruce Springsteen The Promise review". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  10. ^ a b Denney, Alex (2010). "Bruce Springsteen The Promise review". Music. BBC. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  11. ^ Williams, Richard (11 November 2010). "The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story - review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  12. ^ Powers, Ann (15 November 2010). "Review: Bruce Springsteen's 'The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story'". Pop & Hiss. Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  13. ^ "Bruce Springsteen - The Promise". Mojo (205): 112. December 2010.
  14. ^ "Bruce Springsteen - The Promise". Q: 119. December 2010.
  15. ^ Grimm, Beca (17 November 2010). "Bruce Springsteen: The Promise". Paste. Archived from the original on 19 November 2010. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  16. ^ Richardson, Mark (17 November 2010). "Bruce Springsteen - The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  17. ^ Fiander, Matthew (16 November 2010). "Bruce Springsteen: The Promise". PopMatters. Retrieved 2013-10-09.
  18. ^ Scoppa, Bud (December 2010). "Bruce Springsteen 'The Promise: The Darkness on the Edge of Town Story'". Uncut. p. 82.
  19. ^ "Rihanna Scores Euro Albums, Singles Chart Double". 2009-09-14. Retrieved 2012-06-02.
  20. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Swiss Chart - Bruce Springsteen - The Promise (album)" (in German). Retrieved 29 June 2012.
  21. ^ [1] Archived November 27, 2010, at the Wayback Machine.
  22. ^ "Album - The Promise, Bruce Springsteen" (in German). Retrieved 29 June 2012.
  23. ^ "Rihanna siegt "Loud" in den Download-Charts - media control". 2010-11-26. Retrieved 2012-06-02.
  24. ^ "Spanish Charts: Albums - 11/2010" (PDF). Spanish Charts. PROMUSICAE. 2010-11-21. Retrieved 2010-11-26.[permanent dead link]
  25. ^ The Promise Chart Stats
  26. ^ "VIVA Album Top 50 - Alle Musikvideos - Chart". Archived from the original on 2011-01-08. Retrieved 2013-07-07.
  27. ^ "Top 50 Albumes 2010" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-03. Retrieved 2013-07-07-. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  28. ^
  29. ^
  30. ^ " | Musikselskaber 2015 - tal og perspektiver". Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 12 November 2016.
  31. ^ "Irish album certifications – Bruce Springsteen – The Promise". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
  32. ^ "Italian album certifications – Bruce Springsteen – The Promise" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved October 10, 2016.
  33. ^ "Spanish album certifications – Bruce Springsteen – The Promise" (PDF) (in Spanish). Productores de Música de España. Select album under "Chart", enter the certification year in the field "Year". Select the certification week in the field "Semana". Click on "Search Charts".
  34. ^ "Veckolista Album - Vecka 21, 27 maj 2011" (in Swedish). Sverigetopplistan. Archived from the original on June 29, 2012. Retrieved June 29, 2012.
  35. ^ "British album certifications – Bruce Springsteen – The Promise". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved January 14, 2013. Select albums in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Type The Promise in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  36. ^ "American album certifications – Bruce Springsteen – The Promise". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved October 10, 2016. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH.