Caitlin (stay_please) wrote in u2,
Caitlin
stay_please
u2

The triumphant return?

Today's song of the day...

"Zooropa" from.... I dunno, you guess ;-)

Yes, I know it's been done before, TWICE. But I feel I am bringing more to the song, so deal!

Most of my U2ish friends claim Achtung Baby as their favorite album, and so do I. But over time, some of them have shifted over to PopTarts (you know who you are *shakes a finger*). Not that I dislike Pop, but how could you abandon my Achtung Baby baby *strokes my CD*. /digression
Myself, I find myself liking Zooropa (the entire album) more and more every day. In fact, it's one of two albums I've been listening to in the past week or so (for those tuned in - my other is Snow Patrol's Eyes Open - check it out!). So here we go...



Zooropa, being a magnum opus of a song, is easily broken down into several... acts, we'll call them.
Act 1 - the intro
It's a lot more foreboding than the opening of Achtung Baby. There aren't any words for 2+ minutes. Just low piano notes, and some static. The static becomes ever the slightest bit clearer, and you swear you can almost make out voices, but they're being played too fast for any recognizable words. This would be my least favorite part of the song. I love the live version I recently acquired, 'cause it skips right to my favorite act later. I understand the content, but that doesn't mean I have to enjoy sitting here waiting for the good parts.

Act 2 - enter Edge, followed by a talking Bono
Around 1:46 that piano magically transforms into a guitar, playing the same tune. It is shortly joined by our remaining members, and Bono gives us a few "What do you wants" before swinging into "Zooooropa". I suppose he is actually singing for now, but there isn't much change in pitch, and it sounds like he's just handing out a few aphorisms. I especially like the paradoxical advice of "eat to get slimmer" (note icon).

(What do you want?)
(What do you want?)

Zooropa... Vorsprung durch Technik
Zooropa... be all that you can be
Be a winner
Eat to get slimmer

Zooropa... a bluer kind of white
Zooropa... it could be yours tonight
We're mild and green
And squeaky clean

(What do you want?)
(Shhh)
(What do you want?)
(No sound now)
(What do you want?)
(Don't put you down)
(What do you want?)
(No sound now)

Zooropa... better by design
Zooropa... fly the friendly skies
Through appliance of science
We've got that ring of confidence


Can I get a translation of "Vorsprung durch Technik"?

Act 3 - the creamy middle
(Apparently Zooropa is a chocolate now.)
THIS is my favorite section. I quoted only these lyrics in my journal a few weeks ago. For such a dark, foreboding song, the lyrics are strangely uplifting. I suppose the timing of this SotD is due to my own change in life attitude, as inspired by this song (among others).
Around 3:45 we get back to that guitar that opened act 2. Between 3:54 and 3:58 there is a squeaky effect I'll come back to at the end of the song. Then Adam gets a "THUMP" and we go right into the climax. I also like that the climax lasts a little while, it's not just a burst or epiphany. Bono takes a while to say his message, and keeps it on full throttle the whole time, while the guys are on the same level.

And I have no compass
And I have no map
And I have no reasons
No reasons to get back

And I have no religion
And I don't know what's what
And I don't know the limit
The limit of what we've got

Don't worry baby, it'll be alright
You got the right shoes
To get you through the night
It's cold outside, but brightly lit
Skip the subway
Let's go to the overground
Get your head out of the mud baby
Put flowers in the mud baby
Overground

No particular place names
No particular song
I've been hiding
What am I hiding from

Don't worry baby, it's gonna be alright
Uncertainty can be a guiding light
I hear voices, ridiculous voices
Out in the slipstream
Let's go, let's go overground
Take your head out of the mud baby


The lyrics are negative in reading, with "no" being a part of half of the lines. But the neagtivity accompanies lines like "I don't know the limit to what we've got". Uncertainty can be a guiding light, indeed.

Act 4 - the ending
After "... out of the mud baby" you can almost hear the song drop down a notch. And Bono finishes his lyrics, shifting from second person to third. The shift from "you" to "she" is signifant. It's almost as if we are taking ourself out of the subjects dream, and Bono is coming with us. Were we the subject to begin with? Depends on your interpretation, or how much you can identify with the song.

She's gonna dream up
The world she wants to live in
She's gonna dream out loud
She's gonna dream out loud
Dream out loud


Back to the squeak I mentioned. It outros the song, it is the last thing you hear. To me, it's as if the tape has ended, but the wheels keep turning. When it is heard earlier, before act 3, it's as if the tape is stretching. I'm certainly picturing a film strip, and the dream/movie/illusion is over. It kind reminds me of an Ingmar Bergman film, Persona. But analyzation of that is for another day...

Fave lyric:
I have no reasons, no reasons to get back.

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