Author Topic: Can U2 have another radio hit?  (Read 4111 times)

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Offline Johnny Feathers

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #60 on: February 14, 2017, 02:33:46 PM »
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when U2 released POP they claimed going that direction was the PUNK thing to do.......... enough with chasing radio pop friendly tunes that don't connect with the majority of their audience, so let's see if they listen to their inner PUNK voice this time around

Yeah, but it was also later revealed that the ambition behind "Discotheque" was to achieve a "Sledgehammer" level hit song.

Peter Gabriel's "So" was quite innovative sonically but also (successfully) aspired to broader appeal than previous work.  Replace "Peter Gabriel's "So"" with "U2's "Achtung Baby"" and I think the previous sentence still works.

If you look at the roots of punk song-wise it was quite influenced by 60's pop. I don't think punk intentionally eschewed appeal.

If anything initial punk removed the fluff and (at its best) revealed the simple core components that make great rock songs.  Essentially making the creative form accessible to future aspiring musicians (or close facsimiles thereof).

I don't know of any band ever that did not want their music to be liked.  That approach would truly be innovative.

I would be curious to know from you and others:  if U2 decide not to aspire to hits...then what should they use as their measuring stick for great or even finished work/songs?

Splitting hairs, but I'd say PG's So is equivalent with U2's TJT.  I think both functioned almost identically to each of their careers.

And yes: U2's view of "punk" I think has mostly been in keeping with the simplicity of the songs, much like the early rock and roll era.  You're spot on: it's not that U2 have been very interested in being abrasive, it's that they've wanted to keep things direct and simple, like the Ramones and the Clash.  It's obvious by Bono's view of prog rock--which I think is a bit of a shame, as I think it closes the door to some interesting things they could do, and have even done in the past.  Zooropa is practically prog rock.

As for how their success can be measured, I think it's in the eye of the beholder.  I think SOI had some legitimate artistry to it.  I also think they could have done more with it.  I'd actually LIKE to see them do a full on concept album.  Or something beyond the 3-4 minute pop song.  Make it interesting, like it used to be.

Offline pdk

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #61 on: February 14, 2017, 02:49:34 PM »
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when U2 released POP they claimed going that direction was the PUNK thing to do.......... enough with chasing radio pop friendly tunes that don't connect with the majority of their audience, so let's see if they listen to their inner PUNK voice this time around

Yeah, but it was also later revealed that the ambition behind "Discotheque" was to achieve a "Sledgehammer" level hit song.

Peter Gabriel's "So" was quite innovative sonically but also (successfully) aspired to broader appeal than previous work.  Replace "Peter Gabriel's "So"" with "U2's "Achtung Baby"" and I think the previous sentence still works.

If you look at the roots of punk song-wise it was quite influenced by 60's pop. I don't think punk intentionally eschewed appeal.

If anything initial punk removed the fluff and (at its best) revealed the simple core components that make great rock songs.  Essentially making the creative form accessible to future aspiring musicians (or close facsimiles thereof).

I don't know of any band ever that did not want their music to be liked.  That approach would truly be innovative.

I would be curious to know from you and others:  if U2 decide not to aspire to hits...then what should they use as their measuring stick for great or even finished work/songs?

Splitting hairs, but I'd say PG's So is equivalent with U2's TJT.  I think both functioned almost identically to each of their careers.

And yes: U2's view of "punk" I think has mostly been in keeping with the simplicity of the songs, much like the early rock and roll era.  You're spot on: it's not that U2 have been very interested in being abrasive, it's that they've wanted to keep things direct and simple, like the Ramones and the Clash.  It's obvious by Bono's view of prog rock--which I think is a bit of a shame, as I think it closes the door to some interesting things they could do, and have even done in the past.  Zooropa is practically prog rock.

As for how their success can be measured, I think it's in the eye of the beholder.  I think SOI had some legitimate artistry to it.  I also think they could have done more with it.  I'd actually LIKE to see them do a full on concept album.  Or something beyond the 3-4 minute pop song.  Make it interesting, like it used to be.

Great response.  (wish they allowed the LIKE feature and I'd probably post MUCH less)   :)

Offline pdk

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #62 on: February 14, 2017, 02:54:46 PM »
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when U2 released POP they claimed going that direction was the PUNK thing to do.......... enough with chasing radio pop friendly tunes that don't connect with the majority of their audience, so let's see if they listen to their inner PUNK voice this time around




I would be curious to know from you and others:  if U2 decide not to aspire to hits...then what should they use as their measuring stick for great or even finished work/songs?

For my money just their own ear...don't compare/measure with anything else... just think do you as the people making it like it/believe in it.

ahhhh my friend.  The next question is: what do they believe in?

This belief... I do not think it is what we think it is.... or what we want it to be.

I don't agree with your answer BECAUSE I don't think that is the issue.  I believe that they believe in what they release. 

I was hoping to get your answer because we tend to appreciate similar expressions of U2.

Always a pleasure chatting with you, Sir!...

I have no doubt they believe in what they are making - no doubt at all....It is what they are trying to make that I think is the problem - they are trying (in the main) to make music that appeals to everyman...

Ironically their best stuff (to me anyway) in recent times is when they aren't being overtly "pop rock"/hit makers....SLABT, Cedars, Never Let me Go, Stateless et al....

What I would pay to see them get ENO and Lanois and go back to the castle ala UF.

Music was the main ambition and lyrics came later.  The only conventional song was PRIDE and Bono served those adventurous musical pieces.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2017, 03:00:36 PM by pdk »

Offline DoYouFeelLoved

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #63 on: February 14, 2017, 06:37:36 PM »
I'd like to think that U2 at full speed, free from self-doubt and grandiose delusion, are still the ones that made the 90's tryptic.

I might be wrong though.
Perhaps they really are truly committed and believe in what they've been doing...

Offline fardreamer

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #64 on: February 15, 2017, 11:14:21 PM »
Is radio still a thing?

Seriously, I haven't listened to music on the radio in over ten years. Hasn't the world moved on?

Offline tigerfan41

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #65 on: February 16, 2017, 12:06:01 AM »
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Is radio still a thing?

Seriously, I haven't listened to music on the radio in over ten years. Hasn't the world moved on?

Not entirely. A lot of people still subscribe to Sirius XM, for instance. I do because I like to have variety. It gets boring listening to your own playlists or albums all the time. Sometimes I do discover new music through the radio, too.

I will agree that local radio is probably on its way out. But I can't see Sirius going away for a long time.

Online imaginary friend

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #66 on: February 17, 2017, 05:45:23 PM »
Not specifically about U2, but related:


Online JTNash

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #67 on: February 17, 2017, 06:50:29 PM »
They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

Online THRILLHO

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #68 on: February 17, 2017, 06:53:09 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

HELL.NO.

they need to act their age and not try to be seen with cool kids or they'll wind up looking like "granddad on the dance floor" as Bono put it once.

Online JTNash

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #69 on: February 17, 2017, 07:11:53 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

HELL.NO.

they need to act their age and not try to be seen with cool kids or they'll wind up looking like "granddad on the dance floor" as Bono put it once.
Metallica was bad ass with Gaga

Online THRILLHO

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #70 on: February 17, 2017, 07:29:21 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

HELL.NO.

they need to act their age and not try to be seen with cool kids or they'll wind up looking like "granddad on the dance floor" as Bono put it once.
Metallica was bad ass with Gaga

WAY different. Gaga wasn't singing on the album with them. It was a one off performance with her. They have huge success with a great new album, i don't care if the Gaga stuff happens after the release for the Grammys etc.

Online JTNash

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #71 on: February 17, 2017, 07:34:14 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

HELL.NO.

they need to act their age and not try to be seen with cool kids or they'll wind up looking like "granddad on the dance floor" as Bono put it once.
Metallica was bad ass with Gaga

WAY different. Gaga wasn't singing on the album with them. It was a one off performance with her. They have huge success with a great new album, i don't care if the Gaga stuff happens after the release for the Grammys etc.
just one song then they could have a radio hit and win a Grammy boom! Lol

Online WookieeWarrior10

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #72 on: February 17, 2017, 07:40:35 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink
U2 might as well throw in the towel if they ever become that desperate.

Imagine telling Bono of 20 years ago that he would turn into a faux pop-star making songs like Song for Someone.

Online WookieeWarrior10

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #73 on: February 17, 2017, 07:41:05 PM »
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They need a collaboration with a cool kid.  My pick would be Lady Gaga or Pink

HELL.NO.

they need to act their age and not try to be seen with cool kids or they'll wind up looking like "granddad on the dance floor" as Bono put it once.
Metallica was bad ass with Gaga

WAY different. Gaga wasn't singing on the album with them. It was a one off performance with her. They have huge success with a great new album, i don't care if the Gaga stuff happens after the release for the Grammys etc.
just one song then they could have a radio hit and win a Grammy boom! Lol
And only partly tarnish their legacy!  :)

Online JTNash

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Re: Can U2 have another radio hit?
« Reply #74 on: February 17, 2017, 07:55:43 PM »
Oh come on a fun collaboration maybe a song for a move could regenerate interest.