?

Log in

No account? Create an account

U2 LiveJournal

Hello Hello!!


March 25th, 2006

An early Sunday SOTD @ 11:33 pm

inklingfair:
I'm currently feelin: wide awaaaake!

The previous two Bads are from The Unforgettable Fire and Live Aid, so I'm taking the Rattle and Hum one.

Lately I've been posting songs with screencaps - because I'm a child of the MTV generation and process songs better visually (yeah, right) - and this one's gonna get its fair share of the treatment. I MUST say though that I'm rather torn about what to think of Bono here. Sexy? Funny? Ew, sweaty!Bono? You decide.

In an attempt to save bandwidth: screencapped version here.

[EDIT: Right. What the heck, why not? You can view it here, too :D]



"Bad" (Denver, Colorado on 8 November 1987)

If you twist and turn away
If you tear yourself in two again
If I could, you know I would
If I could, I would let it go

(Adam: DUM?-dum...)
Surrender, dislocate


(Um.)

If I could throw this lifeless
Lifeline to the wind
Leave this heart of clay
See you walk, walk away
Into the night
Through the day
Into the half-light
And through the flame

If I could through myself
Set your spirit free
I'd lead your heart away
See you break, break away
Into the light
Through the day
Into the half-light
Through the flame

Sing it

To let it go
And so to fade away
To let it go
And so fade away

I'm wide awake
I'm wide awake

Wide awake
I'm not sleeping
Oh, no, no
I’m not sleeping



If they should ask then maybe
They'd tell you what I would say
True colours fly in blue and black
Bruised silken skies and burning flak [edit: flag? I'm never really sure]
Colours crash, collide...

...in bloodshot eyes

If I could, you know I would
If I could, I would let it go

This desparation
Separation
Condemnation
In temptation
Isolation
Revelation
Isolation
Revelation
Desolation

Let it go
And so to fade away
Let it go
And so fade, fade, fade away
Not fade away
No, no
Not fade away
No, no

Not fade away
Let it go
And so fade away
To let it go
And so fade, fade, fade away
Fade away
Not fade away

No, no
Not fade away

I’m wide awake
I’m wide awake
Wide awake
I’m not sleeping
Oh, no
I’m not sleeping
Oh, no

Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday
Who could hang a name on you
Goodbye, Ruby Tuesday
Who could hang a name on you

Pleased to meet you
I hope you guessed my name
You know I’m pleased to meet you

(Larry: *BOOM*)
I hope you guessed my name

So let it go
And so fade away
So let it go
And so fade, fade, fade away

(I've always found this really sweet... But I wouldn't want to be Adam)




*fangirlish mode*
This is my all-time favorite U2 song! Larry hitting the cymbals while bobbing his head is so cute! The Edge!guitar is so sexy, and Adam is fantastic.

*serious SOTD mode*
For me, visually this is one of the best songs on Rattle and Hum. The profile-in-shadow shots are gorgeous, especially those of Adam and Edge. I can't imagine this being done in anything but black and white - the lack of color makes the play of light and shadow just so much more dramatic. I think, though, that the frontal shots of Bono with the spotlight on him weren't very flattering - I liked how he was just half-lit up at the start (But then again the audience should see him, so let's not blame the lighting director).

I really appreciated the way Phil Joanou captured the band in concert, with wide sweeping shots and slow pans. I mean, Hamish Hamilton's great, but he doesn't linger, the cameras are all switching so fast you have to catch your breath. There's Larry! Oh, that's Bono again, blurred. Ada-Edge! Guitar! Bono's mug! His hand! Whoa, top-view crowd shot! Anyway...

I guess this live Bad wasn't included in the R&H album because there was already a live one in Wide Awake In America (1985). The WAIA version is a lot "cleaner", and Bono's voice was in far better shape then, but I like the rawness of R&H. (Sadly, Bono can't quite hit that "wide awake" bit in the Elevation (Boston 2001 DVD) version of Bad. Cigars and age, maybe?)

I think the "wide awaaaake!" is much more convincing in R&H because of its relative roughness. Here, "wide awake" is more than just being able to open your eyes - it's a painful and reluctant awakening, and to me, the slow buildup of the song before it is like mumbling, "five minutes more..." to the one trying to rouse the sleeper. Then "colors crash, collide in bloodshot eyes".

If I could pick a favorite line from this, it would be:
Into the light
Through the day
Into the half-light
Through the flame


The programmed intro used to bother me the first few times I heard live Bad, but it's grown on me - now I miss it when listening to the UF version. Edge's playing the same two chords (?) over and over again for most of the song has a very hypnotic effect, and I always find myself waiting for Adam's first Dum?-dum around the first let it go.

There's the heroin angle that most U2 fans know about... But the beauty about Bad is that it's so vague and encompassing that it goes beyond what U2 might have written it about. To me it's something I imagine being written or sung or heard at around four in the morning, when you haven't got a wink of sleep and you've got a crick in your neck and you're not thinking straight anymore and you desperately want to rest (which is ironic, considering the lyrics). Then the dawn breaks and you feel new strength returning to your limbs and you feel like a million bucks. The way it *melts* into Streets adds to the sense of euphoria... but somebody stop me, that's another SOTD.

I'm still not sure why the snippets of Ruby Tuesday and Sympathy for the Devil were often sung during live versions of Bad, but I love hearing Larry's *BOOM* punctuating the Pleased to meet you! parts.

It's been a looong SOTD, I know. Way out of control, sorry.
 
Share  |  |

Comments

 
[User Picture Icon]
From:bonoffee
Date:March 25th, 2006 11:59 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Ack, this was one I planned to do until the song refused to upload for me and I lost faith. I have a SOTD post for it written and everything! And it's not that dissimilar to yours, I agree with what you've said. This is my absolute fave version of Bad. I don't think you can find a better one. I actually think, though, that Bono's voice is perfect on this version. I think he just gets it all spot-on and the music is brilliant, too. I love the snippets, they just add a little extra, and overall I adore this track too much to really be healthy. :)

And yay, someone else writes long SOTDs too! They're good, y'know.
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:March 26th, 2006 05:27 pm (UTC)

(Link)
Eep... I had no idea, sorry. Maybe this is why we oughtta make lists in advance.

And yay for long SOTDs!
[User Picture Icon]
From:wydok
Date:March 26th, 2006 12:31 am (UTC)
(Link)
I like the Elevation Live from Boston DVD version the best. This version is good, but I think it's a little weird putting Ruby Tuesday and Sympathy for the Devil in the end of the song.
From:vintagefuck
Date:March 26th, 2006 03:55 am (UTC)
(Link)
I was hoping he would do the RS snippets when I saw them live. I'm not sure if it was because it was the day after Rosa Parks died and that added to the universal human rights campaign or if he did it at other concerts, but he did "People have the power" instead. At least, I think it was "People have the power."

I really do have to watch this dvd again sometime.
[User Picture Icon]
From:sapphires13
Date:March 26th, 2006 10:03 am (UTC)
(Link)
Video SOTDs are fun, because they give me an excuse to whip out the DVDs XD

Watching now, hmmm. Black & white does suit this performance. I love Bono, and I love his chest, and I love him when he's sweaty. But... I don't love him here. Here he looks a little gross. I think it's the hair, I prefer it a bit shorter. And the pants. My god, the pants. I would like to know who in the hell told him those pants looked good. Ew.
Anyway. A performance of light and shadow, Edge is doing his thing, Larry's bobbing a bit and doing his. I love that you can actually see Adam preparing to step into the song, just before that first "let it go". The song moves on, and you can see where Bono's voice is a bit strained, particularly on the "ooh ooh"s. But my god, I love that shot of bobbing silhouette!Adam, with the light shining from behind. Gorgeous! A gold star for Phil Joanou.
Okay, I get what you mean about the R&H "wide awake" being painful. On UF, it's energetic. Here it's as though he's awake, but he wishes he wasn't, because the world he sees around him isn't what he wants. Ooh, another gold star for Joanou. I love the light glare on the lense (first seen at the beginning of the "desperation, separation" part). Oooh, and Adam and Larry are both together and facing Larry, while Bono does his thing elsewhere. I love it when they do that.
Okay, I'm taking half of a gold star away. I don't like the slow-motion part at all. It just bothers me. Plus Edge looks kind of evil while playing guitar during that part.
As for snippiting Ruby Tuesday and Sympathy for the Devil, I love it. I've come to expect it, even when listening to the UF version of Bad. Plus, It's nice seeing Bono singing Rolling Stones songs, because I'm afraid of Mick Jagger, even if I do like the songs themselves.
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:March 26th, 2006 05:36 pm (UTC)
(Link)
That was a mouthful. Hurray for long comments to long SOTD posts ;-)

I love that shot of bobbing silhouette!

Hee! I'm not the only one who does.

And about the pants. Ditto for me.

Phil Joanou was the perfect director for the band at this period, IMO. Never mind that Rattle and Hum wasn't that well-received - I think it looks better and better in retrospect. It's such a joy to screencap. I'm in a big JT/R&H phase now, so...

And right before "Bad", the Larry-Elvis thing! *lapses into fangirl mode because, apparently, Larry was ALSO a fanboy*
[User Picture Icon]
From:boriel
Date:March 26th, 2006 06:07 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Bad is my all time favorite (constant favorite) U2 song. I dont know precisely why, and until just a year ago i had no idea of the heroin connection to the song... it just didnt dawn on me all those years that it might be a song about addiction etc. To me the song has an undertone of hope and faith and light... with or without the 'popcorn' intro it still has an air of light to me.

my favorite lyric:
If I could throw this lifeless
Lifeline to the wind
Leave this heart of clay
See you walk, walk away

i guess from a spiritual standpoint - which is how i always see u2 songs i must honestly say - this reminds me of the fact that this body is just hollow clay for the soul - makes me think of someone leaving it all behind and being freed at last.

and i think i hear on UF album 'flak' but on later verisons i'm sure i hear 'flag' :)

good SOTD btw.
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:March 27th, 2006 02:29 am (UTC)
(Link)
...this body is just hollow clay for the soul - makes me think of someone leaving it all behind and being freed at last.

Thank you, that was lovely.

From:tiffiny_
Date:March 26th, 2006 11:13 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Bad is my favorite song, not just by U2, but ever. At one point in my life I was engaged to a man who was a recovering heroin addict. He relapsed and overdosed. I woke up one morning and he was dead. His brother picked me up and took me to his house. A friend put on Bad. We just listened, exhausted and speechless. It has become an anthem for a new life for me. I adore the raw aspects of this version. Sorry for the TMI, but I can't help it when it comes to Bad.
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:March 27th, 2006 02:36 am (UTC)
(Link)
That must be awful... Drug addiction is a terrible thing. Bad fleshes out its anguish, I think, without actually condemning the people concerned.
[User Picture Icon]
From:canadanne
Date:March 31st, 2006 12:28 am (UTC)

(Link)
Umm... confused. :/  Your post says this performance was filmed at Madison Square Garden, which at least one website seems to agree with. But my U2 Encyclopedia says it was filmed at the Denver show on 8th November 1987, and I've found websites that support this as well. Any idea which is correct?!
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:March 31st, 2006 04:53 am (UTC)
(Link)
Gee,it does? I always thought it was from Madison Square Garden, but looking around, it seems it is from Denver... I'll repair that in a jiffy. :)
[User Picture Icon]
From:canadanne
Date:March 31st, 2006 08:38 pm (UTC)
(Link)
In this Internet age, I could not believe how difficult it was to find out that simple piece of trivia - Google failed me repeatedly, and I had to try three different books before I found an answer! Crazy!
[User Picture Icon]
From:canadanne
Date:April 5th, 2006 12:03 am (UTC)

(Link)
Ahh, this is such a great version!

On the whole I'd say I slightly prefer Bad on the album to any live performance of it, but one thing the live versions definitely have going for them is that *gorgeous* sparkly intro before the guitar comes in. How magical is that? And the movie version has plenty more to praise as well...

The passion and the power in this particular performance (argh, alliteration overload!) are incredible. Bono is a little crazy-eyed at times, and doesn't seem at all daunted by the big notes in the song - he just belts it out in truly mesmerising fashion. It's amazing how it seems to get more and more intense as it gathers momentum towards the end, with the whole "No! No! Not fade away!" sequence and a seemingly endless cycle of Bono screaming sessions. What energy. Not to mention all the hair-flipping - I'm surprised he wasn't offered a role in a L'Oréal advert after that performance! ;)

What else have we got here... I love the way Bono adds an "uh-huh!" after each "Let it go...", and I'm always somewhat amused by the way he over-pronounces "Isola-shon! / Revela-shon!" etc. :D  And I loooooove the Rolling Stones snippets, they fit so perfectly. The softness of Ruby Tuesday is a wonderful contrast to all the frenzied hysteria just before it, and then Sympathy For The Devil turns him straight back into aggressive-Bono. I'd never heard SFTD before I saw Rattle & Hum, and that snippet made me want to hear the rest of the song - which I now completely adore! :)  I love how Larry pounds the drum after each line there, too (especially with the simultaneous bursts of light). :D

Isn't it cute how Adam and Edge both get to come up and have their turn in the spotlight once Bono vanishes for the outro? :)

As for what to make of Bono's appearance... I can't say sweaty half-naked 80s Bono does it for me, personally, and the Simon Cowell trousers plus braces are an odd fashion choice, but I can see why Bono fanciers would go crazy over this clip! :p  The upside-down cross looks good... and there's something rather adorable about the way he holds the mic with both hands during the second verse. :)


P.S. I've never been entirely certain if it's "flak" or "flag", either. I tend to think it's flak, because that's how I originally saw it transcribed, and it rhymes with black. But flag makes sense too, and he doesn't really pronounce it clearly enough to tell either way!
[User Picture Icon]
From:inklingfair
Date:April 5th, 2006 01:57 pm (UTC)
(Link)
...how Adam and Edge both get to come up and have their turn in the spotlight once Bono vanishes for the outro?

The two facing Larry and just playing = LOVE that part :)

U2 LiveJournal

Hello Hello!!