kat (bonoffee) wrote in u2,

Q's 'Greatest Lost Tracks'

In the assumption that many people in this community don't have ready access to Q magazine, and in my unending determination to be a nice and considerate U2 fan, here's something from the latest edition of Q. They run a list of the 500 greatest lost tracks, and inside that list are some select band lists as well. U2 is one of them and I was very happy to see some of my favourite U2 songs in the list. Maybe this will gain them recoginition with a wider audience. Or maybe it'll remind us all to go and listen again (which I did after reading it).

Anyway, cutting for spoilers in case anyone wants the mag, but I've written the list out in full! (I've omitted the list numbers because they are necessary only to the wider list.)

Street Mission
Scrappy early demo reveals the nascent U2's punk-shaped ambitions and Bono's valiant attemps at an English accent. Unearthed on iTunes's digital boxset The Complete U2.

Another Day
Their second single, from 1980, finds Bono wrestling with teenage boredom and "the dawn of another dull day". Only released in Ireland.

Trash, Trampoline And The Party Girl
Written and recorded in just half an hour for the B-side of 1982 single A Celebration, this playfully ramshackle song later became part of U2's live set.

Bass Trap
Hypnotic instrumental taken from the 12-inch vinyl version of The Unforgettable Fire single. Adam Clayton has a starring role: the track is built around a bass sample.

The Three Sunrises
Pulled from The Unforgettable Fire album because it was deemed not to fit stylistically, even though it sounds like a typical U2 song given Eno's trademark ambient treatment.

Walk To The Water
The flowering of a romance told via atmospheric backing and spoken-word vocal ("Walk to the water/Walk with me a while"). Left over from the sessions for '87's The Joshua Tree.

Silver And Gold
Rabble-rouser written by Bono for '85's Artists United Against Apartheid album Sun City. This full-tilt studio version, a B-side to the Where The Streets Have No Name single, is lesser known than the live version that appears on 1988's Rattle And Hum collection.

God Part II
The blueprint for 1991's Achtung Baby with its industrial beat and list lyric, this was their passionate response to John Lennon's God, which dismissed The Man Upstairs.

Hawkmoon 269
Love-hungry Bono comes over all lustful on this dramatic Rattle And Hum track that has Bob Dylan helping out on Hammond organ.

Dancing Barefoot
U2 toy with voodoo in this powerful cover of a track from Patti Smith's 1979 album Wave, originally heard only by those who bought the 7-inch of When Love Comes To Town.

Mysterious Ways (Ultimatum Mix)
Dancefloor-friendly retooling of Achtung Baby's second single - originally a mid-tempo rocker, here re-cast as a rare-groove anthem.

Lady With The Spinning Head (UV1 Version)
The flipside of the One single. Bono is haunted by the titular female spectre. The rest of U2 get the funk.

Bono is in lust mode again, this time on the B-side of Even Better Than The Real Thing. The object of his desire? The Biblican vixen of the title.

Your Blue Room
Floats away on Eno atmospherics, a slow-burning groove and Bono's alternating whispers/falsetto. A stand-out moment from the maligned Passengers album.

Elvis Ate America
Evocative and wickedly funny rap track that namechecks Johnny Cash and Chuck D before alighting on the line, "Elvis ate America/Before America ate him".

Two Shots Of Happy, One Shot Of Sad
Throughout the Zoo TV tour, Bono tinkered with this jazz tune, written for Frank Sinatra but destined for the B-side of If God Will Send His Angels.

From the soundtrack of the Bono-scripted film The Million Dollar Hotel comes this, an ambient soul hymn to dislocation.

Flower Child
Charming acsoutic track that sounds like Oasis-do-The-Kinks, but failed to make the final tracklisting of All That You Can't Leave Behind.

Xanax And Wine
From the How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb sessions comes this rocking out-take that echoes War-era U2.

Sweetest Thing
Written as an apology to Bono's wife Alison after he forgot her birthday, Sweetest Thing was unusual in the sense that it was created around a piano riff that the singer put together. Considered by the band as too straight and poppy at a time when U2 were very much a rock band, the song echoes John Lennon's 1980 track I'm Losing You in its chorus and builds to a dubby conclusion in this original version, the B-side of 1987's Where The Streets Have No Name. Remixed and released as a single in 1998, it became the first step in U2's commercial comeback following the misfire of 1997's Pop album.

So what do you think? There are still lots missed out but as a 90s whore I squeed over the inclusions of Your Blue Room, Lady With The Spinning Head and Salome (plus Xanax And Wine and Hawkmoon). Although the descriptions are very short and don't do the songs justice but it's fun to read nevertheless!
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