Every ten years or so Bruce Springsteen ditches his band, enters the studio alone and records a sombre album of low-key acoustic songs. So, whether you like Devils and Dust or not will depend on how you feel about the Boss's previous exercises in this field, Nebraska and The Ghost of Tom Joad. In fact, even his most devoted fans will probably concede that the songwriting here isn't quite up to the standard of these two landmark releases. Still, there's much to enjoy: sturdy blues tunes, gritty vocals and resonant lyrics that evoke small-town America's feelings about the war in Iraq. There's also a startlingly explicit narrative about an encounter with a prostitute that'll shock even the most jaded listener. On the whole, this is minor-league Springsteen - but it's intriguing stuff all the same.