Author Topic: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge  (Read 1475 times)

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Offline briscoetheque

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Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« on: April 14, 2017, 05:55:58 PM »
Recent albums.

Bono's lyrics have been solid, his voice in parts even better than in the 90s.

Adam's playing has improved out of sight, he's mentioned in several interviews about taking lessons and his playing and even re-invention of old bass lines has been a real highlight on recent albums.

Larry is Larry, his drumming is solid.

At the risk of being labeled a heretic, since the early 2000s, in my opinion it's Edge who hasn't dragged his sound forward in any way or really challenged himself with his output. In terms of guitar parts, he released much the same song a few times (vertigo, get on your boots, volcano, no line on the horizon), reverted back to 'the Edge sound' at most opportunities, doesn't seem to have chased anything particularly new in terms of sounds and effects and has stagnated a little.

There were moments! The beautiful tone at the end of the Troubles is a standout, though sadly, ultimately amounted to nothing.

I love the Edge sound, 360ms delay through a vox has served him well, but of the 4 lads in the band I would like to call out Edge as the guy who has been dragging his heels creatively for the past 15 years, and who can lead the band out of it.

Really hope that when SOE comes around, we're calling it an 'Edge Album'...

Who needs to lift?



Offline WookieeWarrior10

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2017, 07:17:19 PM »
It's down to Edge and Bono for sure.

Musically and technically, Adam obviously improved the most over the years. He's always pushed himself to use new technique (slapping on War, funk on Some Days..., etc.) and, like another user mentioned somewhere on here, he is very comfortable in genre-hopping. That makes him instrumental (lol) in U2's ability to push their musical boundaries.

Larry is underappreciated in that his drumming has developed a sophistication over the years, like on that XXX track. His arrogance in genre-hopping could be holding the band back, but not to Bono's degree.

Bono obviously struggles with his radio-hit obsession. His voice has probably improved since the 360 tour, maybe as far back as Elevatin. Surely he's taken a few lessons like Adam. Not saying the frequent vacations haven't helped either... Anyway. His lyrics have been hit or mss as of late. Cedars Of Lebanon, for example, is incredibly well written. On the other hand, stuff like California and Crazy reek of B.S.. Not just because they suck, but even your average teenage pop-listener can pick up their ingenuineness.

Edge very well could be the issue. Which of his post-2000 guitar riffs match anything he did on Pop? Now, Pop is a phenomenal record, but not a guitar-heavy one as far as U2 albums go. Nothing matches the catchy Discotheque riff, the simple yet effective Do You Feel Loved solo (save The Troubles), his subtle experimention on Gone... What really has he contributed to the band on the past few albums? Do you think you could tell the difference between him and your everyday session guitarist if they played identical arrangements of Vertigo? Edge's simple guitar parts used to be respected for their uniqueness and creativity. Nobody could play those riffs but himself. Now his simple riffs can be replicated by anybody. Gone is the creativity and unique U2 sound... unless we are seriously supposed to believe that an obviously-mixed chimey guitar sound is supposed to pass for a memorable U2 riff.

Offline THRILLHO

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2017, 08:12:29 PM »
huh. interesting argument. can't say i disagree. we all seem so focused on Bono's MOR love and heart lyrics. i'd love for him to mess with his effects again.

Offline skelter

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2017, 08:34:31 PM »
Edge's second skill is singing angelically in harmony with Bono.
Edge's third skill is the piano, mixing etc.

If I were to point a finger for phoning it in it would be to Guy O'Seary. Followed by maybe Larry.
Larry's drumming on Raised By Wolves really pops on headphones though.

Offline Blueyedboy

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2017, 08:38:46 PM »
I think they've all had their great moments at points over this timeframe but, unfortunately, not collectively. You'll be hard pressed to name songs where at least 3 out of the 4 band members have been on fire.
I agree that Edge has had the most sustained "unremarkable" output from all the band members though. That dynamic feel has been missing for some time.

Offline brianrosco

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2017, 10:23:12 PM »
Edge should play the lute


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Offline So Cruel

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2017, 12:37:19 AM »
I disagree. For me none of them are at the level they were in their prime. Adam may be a better player, but has he done anything as memorable as the bass lines in New Years Day, Bullet the Blue Sky, With or Without You, Mysterious Ways, etc...?

Bono in my opinion is the one who has fallen the furthest. Lyrically no where near as consistent as he was. He sings in his high register to often which is thin and whiny. He does have some great moments like Sleep Like A Baby, but then he also gave us Song For Someone and Crazy Tonight.

Edge isn't what he used to be, but even when he gives a cool riff like Elevation or Boots Bono managed to f**k it up by writing some horrid lyrics.

It really comes down to lowering their standards in their search for relevance and that they are now a part time band. Part time effort gets you part time results.

Offline DoYouFeelLoved

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2017, 02:58:46 AM »
Edge and Bono are the ones in the band who have been comfortably settled down in auto pilot mode for over a decade.

Larry and Adam, despite the lack of quality output, they're still delivering good performances.

Offline Smee

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2017, 07:36:36 AM »
Edge needs to go back to his experimental phase. For me....since the turn of the millenium, pretty much any competent guitarist could have replaced the Edge, given the basic guitar parts/sounds he has used.

Offline mrsamrocks2

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2017, 07:47:35 AM »
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I disagree. For me none of them are at the level they were in their prime. Adam may be a better player, but has he done anything as memorable as the bass lines in New Years Day, Bullet the Blue Sky, With or Without You, Mysterious Ways, etc...?
Magnificent?

Offline dougie

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2017, 09:05:32 AM »
It has always seemed to me Edge is a the hardest working one of them all.

1) sound- quality, Edge I bet works a lot on this.
               Fresh/new, he is the creator of sounds
               Backing tracks- It pretty much is Edge (and there is a lot!)
                Difficulty- Heck, he tries to play guitar and keyboards at the same time. He's pushing
                      buttons with his feet at the same time.
                Changes- We all know that Bono is changing things at the blink of an eye- Edge
                       remains cool.
                  Bands evolution- whether you like it or not, Edge has changed the sonic sounds
                         throughout their career.

When they show U2 between tours, my image is Edge sitting at a mixing table or he has a guitar. Edge seems to be the one contributing the most.

What's that quote? "Give them everything you got- and they keep asking for more, more more."

Offline Feeder

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2017, 09:31:42 AM »
Bono's activist agenda hurts the band tremendously. An album only every 4 to 5 years? Too much time to "rethink" direction and tinker with original material.  Amazing how many original takes they wound up using according to Lanois on earlier albums. Maybe JT tour will allow band to revisit Edge's earlier playing style (scrape guitar) and Bono's lyric writing. Albums Unforgetible Fire before and Rattle Hum after were great bookends.

Offline briscoetheque

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2017, 10:13:12 AM »
OK... I'm talking about musical output on record. Not effort, time spent at a mixing desk or the ability to play notes on the piano. He's a monster live and is without peer.

We expect so much of him because he is so good.

Offline skelter

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2017, 11:44:43 AM »
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It has always seemed to me Edge is a the hardest working one of them all.

1) sound- quality, Edge I bet works a lot on this.
               Fresh/new, he is the creator of sounds
               Backing tracks- It pretty much is Edge (and there is a lot!)
                Difficulty- Heck, he tries to play guitar and keyboards at the same time. He's pushing
                      buttons with his feet at the same time.
                Changes- We all know that Bono is changing things at the blink of an eye- Edge
                       remains cool.
                  Bands evolution- whether you like it or not, Edge has changed the sonic sounds
                         throughout their career.

When they show U2 between tours, my image is Edge sitting at a mixing table or he has a guitar. Edge seems to be the one contributing the most.

What's that quote? "Give them everything you got- and they keep asking for more, more more."

Totally agree that Edge works the hardest and longest and is the most gifted as a musician.

Know it's not op's question but yada.

Offline riffraff

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Re: Who needs to lift?... The case for The Edge
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2017, 11:50:07 AM »
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You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
It has always seemed to me Edge is a the hardest working one of them all.

1) sound- quality, Edge I bet works a lot on this.
               Fresh/new, he is the creator of sounds
               Backing tracks- It pretty much is Edge (and there is a lot!)
                Difficulty- Heck, he tries to play guitar and keyboards at the same time. He's pushing
                      buttons with his feet at the same time.
                Changes- We all know that Bono is changing things at the blink of an eye- Edge
                       remains cool.
                  Bands evolution- whether you like it or not, Edge has changed the sonic sounds
                         throughout their career.

When they show U2 between tours, my image is Edge sitting at a mixing table or he has a guitar. Edge seems to be the one contributing the most.

What's that quote? "Give them everything you got- and they keep asking for more, more more."

Totally agree that Edge works the hardest and longest and is the most gifted as a musician.

Know it's not op's question but yada.
This.