Metascore
72

Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 29
  2. Negative: 1 out of 29
  1. Springsteen's topical concerns have subsided for now, washed away by a high tide of positive personal feelings.
  2. Working on a Dream is the richest of the three great rock albums Springsteen has made this decade with the E Street Band--and moment for moment, song for song, there are more musical surprises than on any Bruce album you could name.
  3. This isn’t a tired old pro knocking one more out but rather, a superb song-craftsmen and musician in control; Working on a Dream is one of Bruce Springsteen’s best albums, period.
  4. Although he has always shown a willingness to borrow from himself, Working On a Dream never feels overburdened by those Springsteen mannerisms that have become cliches.
  5. Never has grocery shopping seemed more promising, and if there weren't plenty of other reasons why Working on a Dream is a keeper, that one would be enough.
  6. Hs 16th (16th!) studio album, sees him eschew such stylings and instead go for broke on telling tales and flashing his soul
  7. On his 24th album, Springsteen reaches for the simple power and unabashed romanticism of early pop.
  8. Mojo
    80
    Tke heart and enjoy The Boss's galvanising newie--Mr. Motivator is back. [Mar 2009, p.102]
  9. Uncut
    80
    His 16th full-length recording is by some distance, Springsteen's weirdest, and most constantly startling to date. [Mar 2009, p.76]
  10. Fans will note a lack of Bruceness here: big-sounding proclamations about faith and dreams are few and far between, replaced by sneakily complex love stories all washed down with sudsy pop.
  11. There is no pandering here, with Springsteen and the trusty E Street Band rocking and rolling with free abandon and sounding like they thoroughly enjoyed every single moment recording the album.
  12. When the proudly worn tropes – the irascible low-life characters, the working-class heroes – show up to break up the life-affirming stuff on Dream, they're an afterthought (the jokey “Outlaw Pete”) or worse (heretofore never to be mentiond again "Queen of the Supermarket" is, well, really fucking terrible). That's why the finest moment of the album is "The Wrestler."
  13. Ultimately, Working On A Dream feels like Bruce Springsteen taking stock.
  14. Working On A Dream is arguably the best-sounding album Springsteen has made since "Born To Run." Just don't look too hard at the lyric sheet. As the album's prosaic title suggests, Working On A Dream is weighed down by lines.
  15. Working on a Dream crowns Springsteen & the E Street Band's most productive period since their first four LPs.
  16. Only a great artist could make an album that's at once so stirring and so slight.
  17. 60
    Bliss isn't the Boss' bag. Without anything to push against, one of rock's most eloquent lyricists is in the awkward position of having little of interest to say.
  18. Springsteen has trouble leaving well enough alone. No matter how small the song idea, he whips it up into a sweeping epic with lavish choral accompaniment and blustery solos all building to some grand final flourish.
  19. It is a sonically adventurous album, with the E Street Band again accompanying him. But the songwriting far too often feels like an afterthought, canned and jarringly shallow.
  20. Working on a Dream is not only a worthy album, but also an enjoyable one.
  21. A large part of Springsteen's appeal has always been how the E Street Band has sounded as big and open as his heart, but Working on a Dream, like "Magic" before it, has a production that feels tiny and constrained even as it is layered with extraneous details.
  22. 60
    The end of the working day, the mark of Cain, to win, darling, we must pay--these phrases, variations on ones he's used previously, arise on his fifth studio album in seven years, until it seems his uncharacteristic prolific streak comes partly from lazy songwriting, maybe done with a set of Bruce Springsteen Lyric Magnets.
  23. As an addition to a remarkable oeuvre, then, Working On A Dream has its worthwhile moments, but it's as a snapshot of a window of hope from an increasingly seasoned cultural commentator that it borders on the essential.
  24. Q Magazine
    60
    While mostly perfectly acceptable as individual songs, the 13 tracks don't really stack up as an album, not one that gets close to his best anyway. [Mar 2009, p.94]
  25. This isn’t progress, it’s pleasant, capable, effortless stagnation; the dream’s already finished and we can’t, for the love of everything, recall what it was about.
  26. Working on a Dream works hard on sound, but sleeps on actual songs.
  27. Like Magic, Springsteen’s last long-player, the best tunes here mine a curious retro-pop angle.
  28. Unfortunately, the writing and production is as saccharine as the topics covered, either gossamer thin semi-ideas of tracks padded out, or bogged down by strings and a blinding sheen of instrumentation that does nothing to appeal to anyone beyond easy-listening FM aficionados.
  29. Yet despite O'Brien's anemic production, much of the blame for Working On a Dream undoubtedly lies with Springsteen himself; drained of his angry energy, he dribbles out material that's for the most part goofy and painfully bloodless.
User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 97 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 73 out of 97
  2. Negative: 10 out of 97
  1. Apr 4, 2016
    6
    .....................................................A Very weak.....................................................A Very weak one.................................................................................... Full Review »
  2. Apr 4, 2016
    6
    ......................................................................................................................A Very step back of "The......................................................................................................................A Very step back of "The Boss", but "Wrecking Ball" 2012 is even worse....... Full Review »
  3. Dec 28, 2014
    6
    Um álbum razoável de Springsteen,Com muitas músicas fracas e poucas fortes.
    Top 5 Working On A Dream
    1-Life Itself 2-Working On A Dream
    Um álbum razoável de Springsteen,Com muitas músicas fracas e poucas fortes.
    Top 5 Working On A Dream
    1-Life Itself
    2-Working On A Dream
    3-What Love Can Do
    4-Suprise,Suprise
    5-My Lucky Day
    Full Review »