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December 11th, 2002

(no subject) @ 01:51 am

echoboom:
u2 needs to come back. and they need to be better and louder than ever.

bono said that achtung baby was "the sound of 4 men chopping down the joshua tree".

the 90's were a time where they experimented with their music and kept pushing themselves to make a more intense musical experience. they blew away everyones expectations and become more than just artists, they were revolutionary.
how many people were shocked in some way upon their first listen to achtung baby? i remember being pissed off that first day and threw the cd across the room. a little while later, i was being drawn into the music, the lyrics, the melodies. this was more than anyone expected.

pop took the music onto a different level. no matter how you felt about techno or electronica , u could still appreciate how well produced the tracks are. from haunting basslines to the loud drum machines. it might be the noiseist u2 album yet.

with the commercial failure of pop, they decided to come back to what made them a basic good band.
hence the back to roots cliche of allthatyoucanleavebehind. its still a good album. but when compared to the last 3 albums, it just doesnt ignite the fires that were needed.

i think ATYCLB was them remapping the blueprints of joshua tree to find something they had lost.
upon first listening, i thought it was allright. i still think its allright. much better than most bands out there today, yet, not really a progressive step forward in their sound.

thats why i hope the next album is gonna be hard. mechanic. theyve just done the safe album, and its time for them to be loud again.



this entire diatribe bounces all over the place. but its fueled knowing that u2 have already mentioned something about it being a little punk.

i say bring it. and if we lose some of the safe fans, thats ok. we dont need them.


--im from the set of fans that think pop is better than JT.

--the we dont need them part. i believe bono said that after the first night of zootv when asked why they didnt play some classic songs..
 
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From:neverletmedown
Date:December 11th, 2002 02:13 am (UTC)
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I agree with you, and I know you'll get a schwack of people complaining...

But here's what I have to say.

I tend to associate U2 of the Joshua Tree era and U2 of the Achtung Baby/Zoo TV era as two separate bands.

I agree with you with all things (except with the Joshua Tree/Pop bit... mostly because they are such different albums, none is really better, they're just different albums from different eras in time)

Anyhow... I agree. With ATYCLB, it was a major letdown because it was stagnant. U2 were going backwards, they weren't moving forwards... and in a way, I felt it was unlike their whole purpose of the 1990's...

I think, perhaps, fans had scared U2 during Pop. Many fans were alienated, and U2 were humbled by the loss of sales... and would even bluntly say so "thanks for paying to be here", etc, etc...

U2 were well aware that ATYCLB sounded like "classic U2", and they felt they were at a point in their career when it was alright to sound like themselves. And of course, how can you disagree?

But... when you look back to the Zoo TV era, when their motto was essentially to experiment and grow... to evolve as a band, ATYCLB seemed more like a sort of homecoming, and less of a stepping stone into a new U2 era.

There will always be purists who hope that bands remain stagnant... that their sound remains in the same format they've always had... but U2's a different band in the way that their sound has always changed through each album.

In my (probably lonely) opinion, ATYCLB is like a Rattle & Hum. I hope they can dream it up again, twice...
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From:thewanderer
Date:December 11th, 2002 06:54 am (UTC)

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my favorite u2 album is a toss up between achtung baby, and zooropa. (passengers rocked also) having said that, i also love all the other albums.

its the passion in the music that gets me. not what kind of new effect box edge uses on a particular guitar part, or what cool drum loop they decide to use. i think thats the constant in their songs.

and i dont really think atyclb sounds very much like the joshua tree. atyclb is sort of a mix of styles. (new york, grace, elevation, walkon)
From:circinus
Date:December 11th, 2002 07:07 am (UTC)
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Good. I'm not the only one who found the album lacking. Solid studio work, but just lacking. I did not find the live performance of the album lacking, however, when you strip out all of the glossy mixing and just have the guys on stage. The rawness of the tracks performed live are substantially better. I went so far as to mix ATYCLB in sequence with strictly live performances and play that instead of the album.

I don't think they remapped JT with ATYCLB. I think the two albums just find the most success outside of their fanbase because they blend in with every other song on the radio. None of the albums pair together easily without blatantly ignoring some tracks. The dark side of JT throws back to earlier albums and, I think, is our introduction to what would come in Achtung later. I hear the raw sounds of Boy & War when I listen to ATYCLB live. And Pop would never exist without Zooropa bridging the gap from Achtung.

For all their talk, the band never completely abandons its roots. It links back somehow in lyrics or chords to paths they've walked before. They don't destroy their past, they improve on it.


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From:billhelm
Date:December 11th, 2002 08:06 am (UTC)
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I agree with you in many ways. While I don't hate ATYCLB, it's definitly nowhere near my favorite album. I come from the school of Achtung-being really too young to remember much of the 80s other than I had a casette copy of the Joshua Tree when it came out (and I was 9 years old) and I listened to it all the time. Still Achtung was my first "these guys freekin rock" experience.

There's one exception. I thought the Elevation tour was the best. I saw ZooTV (outdoor) in the early 90s (1 show). I saw Popmart(4 shows!!). And I went to 2 Elevation shows (Chicago and Minneapolis first leg). Elevation was, to me, the best out of the three. Granted I saw ZooTV Outside Broadcast at the World Music theater in chicago (now called the tweeter center or some nonsense) a horrid venue for this show so that could be tainting me. There was something about being on the floor at the Elevation shows, being 5 feet from Bono and the Edge. That stage absolutely rocked and was a great idea. The setlist was great, and even songs that I didn't care for (such as New York) took on new significance once I saw them performed live.

While Pop wasn't commercially successful, I kind of hate how the band looks down on it now as if it is a bastard stepchild. I can't say that I loved the album... I hate the remixes on the Best of CD, however... what's the point? They were not classically great songs to begin with and remixing them doesn't make them so. Pop was a great experimental album for U2. ATYCLB was a step back to a previous era. Who knows what the future will bring. I for one am excited about it either way.
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From:canadanne
Date:December 13th, 2002 06:48 pm (UTC)

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There was something about being on the floor at the Elevation shows, being 5 feet from Bono and the Edge.

That's the main thing that really pissed me off about the Elevation Tour. It's all fine and good if you WERE five feet away from them, but for anyone at the other end of the arena, you just felt left out and resentful. I'm sure there were exceptions, but I for one felt very neglected and I know other people who felt the same. There wasn't even much in the way of screens etc for the people at the back to look at. And I could barely see the band properly without using binoculars, which of course restricted me to focusing on one band member at a time instead of the whole experience. It kind of sucked.
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From:billhelm
Date:December 14th, 2002 12:07 pm (UTC)
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I heard this from others who attended also. An unfortunate situation...

My only question is what about the 4 screens they had up high? Were those not sufficent? I must confess, at both shows I attended the screens were barely visable to me (as I was practically right under them), so I didn't really see much of what was on them.
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From:canadanne
Date:December 15th, 2002 02:10 pm (UTC)

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No, the four screens were certainly not sufficient. They were tiny, black & white (IIRC), and just showed the four band members so nothing exciting like the ZooTV screens... :(
From:goblingemini
Date:December 11th, 2002 01:44 pm (UTC)
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Pop rocks, and while I can't say it's better than JT, it's infinitely better than All That. My fave U2 album is Achtung, and I love Zooropa as well. Aw hell, I love it all.

Peace,
Jess
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From:boomtownrat
Date:December 11th, 2002 02:52 pm (UTC)
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I love each album for what it is, and they're all different to me, yet related - chapters of a book, you might say. But I wasn't all that shocked when I heard Achtung Baby for the first time, because I'd seen "The Fly" when it premiered on MTV, and before that, after all, was their cover of "Night and Day" from Red Hot + Blue. I've always felt that "Night and Day" was a harbinger of what was to come from U2 later. I loved Achtung Baby instantly and it's been my favourite album since the first listen.
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From:divve197
Date:December 11th, 2002 04:24 pm (UTC)

can we rewind it just once more

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yeah, I can finially admit to myself that 'all that you can't leave behind' isn't everything i'd like it to be... and after hearing 'stuck in a moment' on the radio so much, i kinda hesistate to showcase my love for u2 these days... and, as much as i didn;t want to say it, the two times i saw them play on Elevation tour don't hold a candle to my one PopMart experience.

that being said... zooropa was the 3rd CD i ever bought.. almost 10 years ago.. and i like it more and more every time i listen to it, because i think i took it and Achtung for granted because, at the time (until 'all that u' was released) that sound WAS the u2 of the fleeting 'now'...

...so dark, insane, plastic, pompus, ironic, intoxicated, clever, miserable, grimy, lustful, greedy, spoiled.. ROCKSTAR..yet so SUBTLE. the shifty restlessness of Actung came to a full head with zooropa.

back then i never really got "daddy's gonna pay for your crashed car"... but i hear it now. its so edgy and incredible. i miss that.

i trust that if they stay around long enough, they'll get restless again, and i'm looking forward to hearing that.
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From:neverletmedown
Date:December 11th, 2002 07:33 pm (UTC)

Re: can we rewind it just once more

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Amen!
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From:canadanne
Date:December 13th, 2002 06:44 pm (UTC)

Re: can we rewind it just once more

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GREAT comment!!
Very well said.

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