December 28, 2011 – 12:02 pm

Time to open the box. Bootleggers are competing for your dollars too.

Click on the panel for a better view or to download artwork.

The Unbroken Promise: Lighting Up The Darkness Sessions
[Godfatherecords GR BOX 01, CD1 and 2 of 6]

Sessions for Darkness At The Edge Of Town, Record Plant, New York, Oct 1977 to March 1978. Very good soundboard? stereo.

A few months after the official release of Bruce Springsteen’s deluxe boxset (triple CD plus triple DVD set), Godfather Records offered their alternative six-disc set of outtakes and sessions for the Darkness album. Apparently, the good bootlegger delayed their release after realising that Springsteen was also debuting his Darkness boxset at the end of 2010.

As such, only one track on this Godfather box is similar, but not identical, to a track on the official box. The official title is Ain’t Good Enough For You. Godfather mistakenly titled their version What’s The Matter Darling and offer two versions. The quality of the version on the official boxset is superior.

Godfather pushed out this limited edition box sometime in March 2011. While not as fastidious or engorged as the official set, it did come in a set of three double boxsets plus a detailed 48-page booklet and poster.

Still it’s the contents that matter. What we have here are improved versions of outtakes that have circulated previously. Again, the tracks “still in the vaults” probably should remain there. Springsteen is an artist who considers his works carefully and seldom allows a “dud” to be released. CD1 and 2 can be a chore if not for the presence of familiar tracks like Sherry Darling, Drive All Night, Independence Day and Ramrod. Tracks like Break Out never stood a chance. They sound like warm ups.

Next is the set titled “A Masterpiece In The Making”, the sessions for the songs that made the final cut for the Darkness album. You get multiple “versions” of Badlands, Streets Of Fire and so on. Our favorites are the slow-burn songs Something In The Night, Racing In The Street and Prove It All Night. Unlike other sessions, as with the Beatles and Elvis, no one shouts out a “take number”.

Finally, CDs five and six contain alternate versions of songs considered for the Darkness album. Don’t Look Back, The Promise, Gonna Get That Feeling and Someday (We’ll Be Together) finally made it out of the vaults on The Promise album. But the versions here on the bootleg are different takes. In some cases, Springsteen rerecorded his vocals over the original 1977-’78 vocals for the versions on The Promise. Here on this bootleg are all his original vocals.

If you loved the Darkness album, you’ll want to hear the second of the three double sets just to hear how the songs were carefully developed. Springsteen exercised good judgement in choosing the final takes and also was proven correct when he dropped songs like Don’t Look Back and The Promise from the final cut.

While many different bootlegs have covered the same material here, for the first time Godfather has made special effort to group them by theme so as to understand better why some songs were dropped. The sound quality, praised by many, is still very short of the quality of outtakes that have leaked from the Beatles session tapes. The master tape clarity is just not here.

It’s still an interesting set and we like to thank superted for sharing this hard-to-find boxset at the Yeeshkul site. Happy Boxing Day, albeit late.
- Professor Red

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (sample rate of 224 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Discs Three to Six will be shared in the coming week.
Disc 3 and 4 - A Masterpiece In The Making

Disc 5 and 6 - The Alternate Versions
Disc 1 and 2 - Still In The Vaults

Disc 1
Track 101. Break Out - Version 1 2:23 (3.8MB)
Track 102. Break Out - Version 2 2:23 (3.8MB)
Track 103. Don’t Say No - Version 1 3:48 (6.1MB)
Track 104. Don’t Say No - Version 2 3:34 (5.7MB)
Track 105. Say Sons 2:16 (3.6MB)
Track 106. I Wanna Be With You 3:03 (4.9MB)
Track 107. I’m Goin’ Back 5:33 (8.8MB)
Track 108. Frankie 4:47 (7.6MB)
Track 109. Janey Needs A Shooter 6:42 (10.7MB)
Track 110. Sherry Darling - Version 1 4:06 (6.5MB)
Track 111. Sherry Darling - Version 2 5:03 (8.0MB)
Track 112. Bring On The Night 2:36 (4.6MB)

Disc 2
Track 201. Drive All Night - Version 1 4:57 (7.9MB)
Track 202. Drive All Night - Version 2 8:28 (13.5MB)
Track 203. Drive All Night - Version 3 8:31 (13.6MB)
Track 204. Preacher’s Daughter 5:21 (8.5MB)
Track 205. Crazy Rocker 4:58 (7.9MB)
Track 206. What’s The Matter Darling - Version 1 3:51 (6.1MB)
Track 207. What’s The Matter Darling - Version 2 4:08 (6.6MB)
Track 208. Independence Day 6:24 (10.2MB)
Track 209. Ramrod 3:59 (6.3MB)
Track 210. Castaway 3:14 (5.1MB)

A year ago, Springsteen opened his vault and released a triple CD and triple DVD boxset of material left off his classic album Darkness At The Edge Of Town. The new box was called The Promise: The Darkness At The Edge Of Town Story. You can but this super deluxe edition here.

Along with the box came a friendly 2CD version, The Promise, containing just the 21 previously unreleased outtakes. Buy it here.

  1. 10 Responses to “THE BOX”

  2. BigO - you are simply “The Greatest” !

    By TDC on Dec 28, 2011

  3. This should be good, I bought the boxset last Christmas for my wife (huge Bruce fan). So this should complement that gift nicely!

    By Tom on Dec 28, 2011

  4. this will make a perfect end-of-the-year prezzie for myself! thank you

    By tony on Dec 28, 2011

  5. BigO…this will be a great new addition to my recently received Darkness Box set, received over Christmas from my daughter. Can’t wait to download it all an enjoy a great listen. Happy New Years to All !

    By Bubbles on Dec 28, 2011

  6. Keep ‘em coming. This is GREAT!!!!!! Oh, yeah- THANKS!!!!!!

    By BigLou on Dec 29, 2011

  7. wow! Thank you very much…this is a real treat. I am looking forward to the posting of the remaining five CDs. This six CD set is fetching some insane prices online…it’s great to beat the bootleggers.

    By Improper Bostonian on Dec 29, 2011

  8. Love how it’s thought out - neat…

    By Alby JNR on Dec 31, 2011

  9. Terrific post. For those who want this in Flac, not me though, mp3 is fine, check: (whole set)

    By Psyclist on Jan 1, 2012

  10. Looking forward to hearing this set. Thanks

    By Matt on Jan 25, 2012

  11. This is awesome. I wish The Promise Box Set had all original recordings like this. Thanks

    By Bob on Apr 24, 2012

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