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Gaslight Anthem Takes Springsteen Comparisons In Stride

of the Oakland Press

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You can’t be a rocker from New Jersey without having your name mentioned in the same breath as Bruce Springsteen. But Gaslight Anthem frontman Brian Fallon at least carries the Boss stamp of approval.

Fallon is a featured guest on Springsteen’s new DVD “London Calling: Live in Hyde Park,” joining Springsteen and his E Street Band on “No Surrender” — a performance he says he has yet to see.

“When I heard the DVD was coming out, I thought for sure he would just delete that,” Fallon, 30, says with a laugh. “I mean, why would he put me in his DVD? That doesn’t make any sense. Then their lawyers or something called and said, ‘Is it cool to put you in this DVD’ and, ‘Yeah, sure ... ’

“It was really fun to do it, and he’s a cool guy. I don’t really know him, but what I know of him, he’s cool. That was what we all took from it, that, ‘Wow, you can be that famous and still be kind of cool and normal.’ Who knew.”

Fallon and his band, which formed five years ago in East Brunswick, N.J., is getting even more Springsteen comparisons now thanks to the epic, anthemic sound of its third album, “American Slang,” which debuted at No. 16 on the Billboard 200 chart last month. Fallon says he’s flattered, but at the same time, like Springsteen when he was tagged the “new Dylan,” hopes to be seen as more than a clone of his fellow Garden Stater.

“It’s not the kind of thing we’re aspiring to be, really,” Fallon explains. “We come from a lot of the same places, but a lot of different places, too. But that’s a good thing to be compared to, too. I think it’s one of those things we’re gonna have to wear until it wears out ... and just keep going out there and challenging our audience.”

The Gaslight Anthem performs with the Hold Steady, the Whigs and Tim Barry Thursday, July 15, at the Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave. Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $20.50 with a $64 four-pack. Call 313-961-5451 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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