Author Topic: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names  (Read 431 times)

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Offline txq222

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Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« on: July 30, 2018, 03:06:36 PM »
In Ian Ryan's great Zooropa retrospective article for @U2, he lists thematic names for each of the album trilogies:

Quote
I'm a firm believer that, intentional or not, U2 make trilogies of albums. These are the trilogies they've created, and what the parts of the trilogies represent:

The Growth Trilogy

Boy - growth of self
October - growth of faith
War - growth of purpose

The America Trilogy

The Unforgettable Fire - America from a distance
The Joshua Tree - America up close
Rattle And Hum - Inside America

The Loss Trilogy

Achtung Baby - loss of love
Zooropa - loss of purpose
Pop - loss of faith

The Acceptance Trilogy

All That You Can't Leave Behind - acceptance of mortality
How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb - acceptance of adulthood
No Line On The Horizon - acceptance of place

Did these thematic names catch anyone else's attention? They are new to me! Are these names common among U2 fans? I assume he thoughtfully created them to explain his thoughts.

It dawned on me, however, that these trilogies should have names, even if its just among fans and not officially recognized by the band.

Thoughts? Reactions? Objections?



Online laoghaire

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2018, 03:19:28 PM »
I thought it was very nice. We don't want to shoehorn everything into these, but I think it's a nice framework.

Growth trilogy all seems spot-on to me.

America trilogy, not sure about TUF but I don't reject it either. Other two, spot-on.

The Loss trilogy was most interesting to me - the previous themes had occured to me (minus TUF), but these are new ideas for me. I would frame Zooropa less as loss of purpose and more loss of direction. All three are intriguing.

I like ATYCLB as acceptance of mortality. Never got into HTDAAB enough to comment on that one. And am only now working on NLOTH and if it's acceptance of place, I'm not grasping that yet.

Offline ian ryan

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2018, 11:41:58 PM »
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I thought it was very nice. We don't want to shoehorn everything into these, but I think it's a nice framework.

Growth trilogy all seems spot-on to me.

America trilogy, not sure about TUF but I don't reject it either. Other two, spot-on.

The Loss trilogy was most interesting to me - the previous themes had occured to me (minus TUF), but these are new ideas for me. I would frame Zooropa less as loss of purpose and more loss of direction. All three are intriguing.

I like ATYCLB as acceptance of mortality. Never got into HTDAAB enough to comment on that one. And am only now working on NLOTH and if it's acceptance of place, I'm not grasping that yet.

Regarding NLOTH, itís best framed through the lyric from Sumer Rain: ďItís not where youíre born, itís where you belong.Ē Acceptance of place doesnít mean accepting where youíre at, but understanding where you should be, whether itís here or somewhere else.

Offline hollywoodswag

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2018, 04:15:04 AM »
I would agree that the Growth trilogy and the Loss trilogy are pretty spot-on assessments. The other two I would categorize differently. I would probably call the America trilogy the Tribute trilogy, with TUF a tribute to individual victims of unfortunate circumstances, The Joshua Tree a tribute to the lost, forgotten, and overlooked as whole entities (one could possibly make this more specific and call them victims of governmental/societal policy), and Rattle and Hum a tribute to American music (and one could argue the band themselves).

As for the Acceptance trilogy, I feel like I've only ever been able to group them as a trilogy based on the decade in which they were released. I don't think I've done the best job of exploring them thematically, at least for HTDAAB and NLOTH, but I feel like ATYCLB is perhaps an album of triumph and optimism, especially in the face of adversity. I know that some of that stems from the sound, with the album delivering this sort of kick-in-the-door-of-the-new-millenium grandiosity that makes you just want to pump your fists in the air and declare that things will get better from even the darkest depths. I feel like only SIAMYCGOO and Kite are really mortality songs. Peace on Earth strikes me as continuing the theme of Pop, but with a slightly more hopeful tone than, say, Wake Up Dead Man or If God Will Send His Angels.

I want to examine the themes of HTDAAB and NLOTH a bit more to see how I would define those records, but at least as of right now, I've not been able to really label them in an overarching sense.

Offline Boba Fett

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2018, 05:22:39 PM »
Hmmm...interesting, but I'm not sure I agree. Life isn't as neat as that!

For example - October as 'Growth of Faith'? Hardly - it's more about doubt and loss I think.

Offline shineinthesummernight

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2018, 09:04:29 PM »
Very interesting.  Sort of corresponds to the faith journey sequence outlined by M. Scott Peck:  a period of chaos, followed by orderly, conventional faith, a period of questioning, and finally a mature and integrated faith which has been arrived at through personal quest.

Offline ian ryan

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2018, 09:32:20 PM »
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Hmmm...interesting, but I'm not sure I agree. Life isn't as neat as that!

For example - October as 'Growth of Faith'? Hardly - it's more about doubt and loss I think.

October was all about the bandís (minus Adam) participation in Shalom, and their rejection of it in favor of art/music. It and Pop are the most religious albums they have made.

Offline shineinthesummernight

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #7 on: August 06, 2018, 09:37:54 PM »
Interesting that you consider Pop quite religious--I don't usually think of it in that way, unless I guess in a "dark night of the soul" sort of way.  I would consider NLOTH to be quite religious as well.

Offline ShankAsu

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Re: Growth, America, Loss, Acceptance Trilogy Names
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2018, 10:09:17 AM »
I think it fits but i don't think it was what U2 had in mind making the albums.
And TUF aboslutely fits an American theme- Elvis and MLK