Is this the sound of "The Biggest Rock Band In The World" going all pop? Do they want to be the Spice Girls? Nah, but they do try most things on this brilliantly eclectic album. U2 (who've made 11 albums in the last 17 years) attempt a 60 minute summary of the biggest bands of the last few years: Oasis, Prodigy, Massive Attack, and still sound defiantly like U2.
Heavily dance influenced, this release sees U2 at their most experimental. Pop varies from MoFo (techno) and Miami (weird dance) to some of the most straight forward 'pop' songs they've ever written, including Staring At The Sun (a great Oasis-esque pop song) and Last Night On Earth. U2's renaissance is remix orientated, and it says a lot for them that they have now managed to create their most vital sounding record since the 80s. U2 have not just gone pop, they have gone lo-fi, commercial, cool and stayed modern. A great hour for British music and for U2.
And then they gave it 5 out of 5! Reading it now makes me so happy as Pop is one of my fave U2 albums. Not everybody thought it was a failure! Yay! Oh and then I went through another old issue and found the songwords for Last Night On Earth! Aww.
For anyone unfamiliar, Smash Hits, in its day, was a great music mag which offered music satire as well as hilarous pop interviews and the obligatory (and amazing) songwords section in the middle. Plus tons of posters and stupid readers' letters, all done with tongue firmly in cheek. Then it became 2000 and it lost its way and now no longer exists. Boo. But the Pop review is awesome! :D