Author Topic: 21st century U2  (Read 697 times)

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Offline suitoflights

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21st century U2
« on: June 20, 2020, 12:09:45 PM »
I've been revisiting post 2000 U2. AYTCLB - probably my least favourite album and hasn't improved over time.
HTDAAB. Much maligned but I think it's not too bad. Only album to have 2 UK number one singles. Vertigo one of their best rock tracks, Sometimes You Can't Make it one of their best ballads. NLOTH - this could have been great. Most experimental since the 90s. Title track an amazing opener. White as Snow sublime and Cedars one of their finest closing tracks. Just let down by an awful lead single and Crazy. SOI and SOE. Prefer the formrer, a good solid rock album all the way through, maybe cheapened by them giving it away.



Offline pan360

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2020, 10:09:22 AM »
I belong to those lucky fans that enjoy modern day U2. NLOTH and SOE are on my top five. And I actually feel more connected and listen regularly the last five albums even though I am an old fan and POP, AB and TJT are the other three on my top five. ATYCLB connects quite well the 90s with the 80s U2. HTDAAB is a restart for U2, it is not accidental that they chose Lillywhite to produce it. It has the sound we loved. NLOTH could be a masterpiece.  There aren't any songs I don't like on SOI and SOE.

Offline Luzita

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21st century U2
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2020, 11:26:59 AM »
I am a big fan of early U2 ó like really early, the first 3 albums. But I like the recent albums too, esp. SOE. Songs like Little Things, Red Flag Day, and Lights of Home hold up well against the rest of their catalog.


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Offline suitoflights

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2020, 11:54:14 PM »
Agree re above, though SOE is slightly spoiled by me by trying to sound too current. There's a couple of songs I don't care for whereas SOI is probably their most consistent album since Achtung Baby.

Offline Rasmus

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2020, 11:49:21 AM »
U2 in the 80's: Untouchable
U2 in the 90's: Untouchable
U2 in the 00's and 10's: Safe/boring with some good songs here and there

I like ATYCLB because I associate it with the Elevation Tour which was just amazing and the songs worked so much better live than on the album imo. The album itself is pretty boring though. HTDAAB was good when it came out but I dont think it works today for some reason. NLOTH is a weak album. SOI is good and their best since the 90's mainly because of the last half of the album. SOE is very weak except 1-2 songs. Personally I find myself being a U2 fan more and more for nostalgic reasons - I loved them in the 90's and keep hoping for them to regain that same fire/momentum but I dont really believe in it anymore.

Offline zoo adam

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2020, 12:36:17 PM »
U2 won't go back to the experimental 90's. And they won't release another JT or TUF.

However I believe they have one or two more SOI's in them. Not a bad thing as SOI is one of my favourites.

Not expecting these anytime soon. They will need 5 year gaps. That's ok. It's been like that since the last century.


 

Offline shineinthesummernight

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2020, 07:48:48 PM »
I really love NLOTH and that ambient vibe they attained in songs like "Unknown Caller" and "Fez".  I also think SOE had some great tunes.  Each of the albums has something great to offer, though I prefer some more than others.

Offline Argo

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2020, 08:02:16 AM »
Agree with many of the sentiments in this thread. ATYCLB is pretty dull and boring to me, Bomb has some great individual songs but when you put it together on an album it doesn't seem to work so well. NLOTH has some really good moments ruined by them going too safe. And I really like SOI and a lot of SOE.

Offline GoldenStateGirl

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2020, 02:15:30 PM »
HTDAAB is in my top 3!  I love NLOTH but yes, some middle tracks are skippable.  SOI and SOE feel fresh and listenable to me all the time.

Blessed to have lived through TJT and AB in real time...we won't get that era back but it's a treasure in my heart forever.

Offline Vox

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2020, 10:35:41 AM »
This is probably how Iíd rank 21st century U2 as of today, in order:

No Line on the Horizon:  I have always had an intense love for this album.  I ďget it,Ē where most donít (including the band themselves).  This album makes me feel a certain way that no other collection of music does.  I usually rank it in the top 4-5 U2 albums.   
All That You Canít Leave Behind:  I donít usually select this album when Iím listening to U2 music, as itís not the sort of U2 I typically gravitate towards.  But itís hard to dispute the quality.  Usually ranked in the midsection of my U2antheon.
Songs of Experience: I sort of dug this after it came out, but since then itís slipped quite a bit.  Itís such a strange, overwhelming collection of allovertheplace songs.  The production and presentation and quality is so jarring, itís almost comes across like a compilation of tunes taken from different eras (in fact, it probably was).   Iím having a hard time cracking any of it lately.  Ranked in my lower third of U2 albums. 
Songs of Innocence: It seems to me that the U2 community and world at large are slowly starting to realize that this actually wasnít as bad as everyone bitched about, overblown and shaded by the whole Apple thing.  Iíve never been able to fully connect with it, but I still hold out hope that someday it will reveal itself to me.  Actually, earlier this week I flipped around on it, and there are several good songs worth another listen.  Would have been interesting to hear the complete Danger Mouse album. 
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb:  I never really turned back to this one much after 2005 or so.  I usually say itís my 2nd least favorite U2 album.  But like everything the band does, it definitely has its moments. 

I took a quasi, self-induced U2 sabbatical starting in late 2018, and Iíve slowly been coming back around to putting on U2 when I ďput onĒ music.  And for some reason Iíve been listening to more early-to-mid Ď80s stuff, even though the Ď90s will always be my favorite iteration of the band.   

Offline U2alwaysforever

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2020, 04:32:51 PM »
Absolutely love this era of their music. Of course I want a new record and tour but if the songs of innocence and experience were the last release, wow what a great way to end.

Offline Rising Sun

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2020, 10:36:55 AM »
You can make a single cdís worth of songs as a mix of the best of their output during this time, but thereís a lot of homogenous-sounding songs and music with little variety of style like the radical re-inventions of their past.

SOI & SOE were the first U2 albums that made me feel like some of the music could have been made by any number of musicians/bands.  Iíd be happy if they went back to the classic U2 sound of Edgeís chiming guitars and delay.

Offline stateless612

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Re: 21st century U2
« Reply #12 on: October 18, 2020, 07:24:30 PM »
ATYCLB - a heck of lot better than I remembered it. It's quite a good album, and it's only flaw is a couple of weak songs towards the back. When I Look at the World is a really great song.

HTDAAB - solid album, 4-5 really well crafted songs. Vertigo serves its purpose as a solid rocker.

NLOTH - some interesting ideas that turned into about 3 high quality tunes, a handful of middling ones, and then the dreaded middle three. Boots should have been left on the cutting room floor. Cedars of Lebanon is a phenomenal mood piece.

SOI - done in by bad publicity, truly a standout album.

SOE - suffers from some poor lyrics, and a feeling of repurposing a lot of SOI material opportunistically, doesn't really complete the "double album" theme that they were going for. Still, some quality songs exist. A little too much Ryan Tedder though.

The verdict: without BD, Elevation and Vertigo U2 would have been relegated to the dustbin of history long ago...playing to just hardcore fans with diminshing returns. While they don't push the envelope as frequently, they produce high-quality songs and solid albums.