Author Topic: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”  (Read 796 times)

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Offline Vox

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“Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« on: October 08, 2014, 01:52:15 PM »
I’m intrigued by what U2 have done the past month.  It’s clearly been a departure from business-as-usual.  But I’m even more intrigued by where they go from here.  Here are some personal hypotheses – pure unsubstantiated speculation, mind you.  Clearly conceived via coffee-charged clairvoyance. 

1)  Songs of Experience will come out later this year, with little fanfare (though I’m not sure about this, since U2 have said they would like to use the “new technology” with the next album release – which Bono said was still 18 months away).  Imagine five years of silence, then two new albums in one fiscal quarter – one being the self-proclaimed “biggest” release in music history; and the other surely hitting #1 and possibly being the highest “selling” album of the year. 
2)  Songs of Experience will be the meatier and more groundbreaking album.  The “actual album,” album.  The album into which they’ve been pouring everything they have left these past five years.  The one where you can audibly hear God stomping about the room.  The third “masterwork” of their career.  Songs of Innocence was merely thrown out there in a “casual” way – like a fisherman throwing out a line.  Its sole purpose being to get people talking about U2 again, for better or for worse, and maybe even picking up a few new kids, along the way.  Don’t get me wrong – Songs of Innocence is a solid album up-and-down – perhaps their most solid album ever, through-and-through.  But how many of these songs will end up in your own personal top-10, top-15, or even top-20 U2 songs of all-time list?
3)  With the slightly (presumably) longer delay from album release to tour, U2 is working with Apple on a new tour concept.  A tour concept that could only happen in the year 2015.  Remember when Pearl Jam released every single show as a CD at a fairly cheap price years ago?  What if U2 and Apple worked together to charge a nominal fee for anyone to watch any one of their shows in real-time?  And then keep the live footage or songs in their music libraries afterwards?  The technology is there.  This could be done at a fairly low expense to the band (who, we are told, record every show, anyway).  Imagine coming home from work on a Friday, not much going on, looking at the tour schedule on or on the Apple Store, and saying, “hmmm….. let’s see….  U2 are playing in Sau Paulo tonight?   Maybe I’ll kick back, pour some wine, and stream the concert.”  Pop, pour, click, click.  U2 would have a bunch more of my money, that’s for sure – especially if they switch up the set lists.  Or imagine if Apple released some sort of app where you could watch the show on your iPad and actively select the camera angle which you wanted to view in real time?  Like, each weekend you could pretend you were some sort of amateur Phil Joanou, you know?  Hell, I’d be happy with just the audio feed.  The technology is out there for this to happen.  Right now.  Why hasn’t anybody made it happen?  Or maybe they have, and I just don’t know.  I don’t think it would dip into the gate receipts, either.  Hey U2 and Apple – feel free to use this idea at no cost.  (Well, if you want to throw me a couple ten thousand for the idea, I wouldn’t be opposed, and it would make a great feel-good blurb on the back page). 
4)  Or, in a dark and cold universe:  U2 actually put everything they had left into Songs of Innocence.  That was it.  They absolutely thought everyone would think a free U2 album was the greatest thing since sliced bread.  They honestly believed that every reviewer, right down to the Pitchfork hipsters, would think Songs of Innocence was the greatest critical-and-commercial moment of our generation.  This era’s Dark Side of the Moon, only with a groundbreaking and celebrated rollout.  That didn’t happen.  And if they did think it would happen, then maybe it’s just time.  The slightly (presumably) longer delay from album release to tour was to gauge public reaction.  Instead of releasing another new album (which they shelve in an act of self-perceived mediocric shame), and instead of a new-and-exciting twilight phase of their career, U2 announce that the next tour is, in fact, a farewell tour, and that Songs of Innocence is, in fact, their final album.

Anyway, take a look into a crystal ball and try to make a guess on what U2 does next.  They’ve somehow been able to set themselves up for “anything goes,” really.  And that’s a pretty exciting place to be for our favorite band of nearly 40 years. 

Offline Johnny Feathers

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Re: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« Reply #1 on: October 08, 2014, 01:58:59 PM »
You lost me at "with little fanfare".

Offline wildgirl

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Re: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2014, 02:13:48 PM »
Good analysis. I hope they did not believe that everyone would love SOi, they are too smart for that, please they seemed to know there would be some backlash over the release and would get some people annoyed. I believe and hope that number 4 is incorrect, they have too much faith, in music, in themselves as a band for this to be the end. I think there are many more surprises to come our way from the band.

Offline kango

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Re: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2014, 02:22:35 PM »
Maybe they woke up one day, realised they could never get any bigger, so concentrated on how to be better, writing better songs and melodies and enjoying the freedom of not having to be big.

Maybe they will dedicate the next 10 years to this new found freedom.

Offline MacJoost

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Re: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2014, 02:25:00 PM »
Like Springsteen did. Just release them gems!!!

Offline jono2u

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Re: “Where Do We Go From Here? Where To Go?”
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2014, 02:28:39 PM »
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Like Springsteen did. Just release them gems!!!
amen brother