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U2 => The Music and Lyrics => Topic started by: an tha on April 25, 2016, 03:25:04 AM

Title: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on April 25, 2016, 03:25:04 AM
Is......?

For my money it has to be Pop - there are people (like myself) who consider it right up there at the very top of the tree in the bands cannon....but then as evidenced by the poll currently running about u2's worst album (albeit a very small sample) where it is running in the bottom 2 or 3 popularity wise, there are people who see it as the nadir of the bands output...

That small poll and my personal opinion aside - it does to me seem to really divide the fan base like no other and very rarely seems to attract indifference.

It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored and I feel that here and in general it is the bands most polarising album...the one that seems to spark off the strongest feelings at opposite ends of the spectrum.

What say you? Is it Pop that polarises the most or another album?
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: BalconyTV on April 25, 2016, 06:40:38 AM
I love Pop. And to be honest, with each passing year, it seems more fans come to it. So not sure I can say it is that polarizing anymore.

I'd say No Line is the new Pop in that sense. I think No Line is a great and under-rated album. Got reviewed well. Has an interesting sound. But people hate it.

Although on this forum, I think hate breeds hate.

For example ATYCLB. Perhaps thats the most polarising now. People claim to hate it. But come on, really? It has a lot going for it. Sure its a tad bland, and has weak moments... but it still have things in its favor.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 25, 2016, 07:13:07 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album? 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: iehomecoming on April 25, 2016, 08:08:11 AM
ATYCLB. The "masterpiece" word gets thrown around at this album by a few, but it's as milquetoast as it gets. And it contains some of U2's all time worst album tracks. Elevation, Stuck, Wild Honey, Grace, Peace on Earth. In the worst album poll it's right up there as a contender for worst, yet it gets a lot of love too. It's the epitome of everything that's bad about U2 and was the sound of retreat. Produced by Sir Robin. The vision of a turtle sticking it's head back in the shell.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: tom_b1807 on April 25, 2016, 10:42:11 AM
I don't see how anyone can actually hate an album, either love or like an album or just ignore it. As for polarising, there definately seems to be an anti-ATYCLB contingent but rarely see anything hateful posted about Pop.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 25, 2016, 10:45:51 AM
Probably makes sense to distinguish what is polarizing to the general music public versus the manic fans on this forum. 

For the general public, you could make a case that SOI was the most polarizing simply because of the release controversy.  Add in the ever-present Bono and his advocacy, and a lot, I mean a lot, of people want nothing to do with this band anymore.

For the hard cores, not sure... Pop, Behind, Bomb and NLOTH all are contenders in their own unique ways.

Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: acrobat62 on April 25, 2016, 10:52:16 AM
One could make the case for RnH too as when it came out, especially the movie (can you disconnect the two) how self indulgent and pompous it was at the time.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on April 25, 2016, 10:56:45 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Thunder Peel on April 25, 2016, 11:01:46 AM
I'd actually wager that October is the most polarizing. People either love it or hate it, whereas records like Pop and NLOTH tend to have more varied opinions.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on April 25, 2016, 11:11:59 AM
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I'd actually wager that October is the most polarizing. People either love it or hate it, whereas records like Pop and NLOTH tend to have more varied opinions.

You may be on to something here and you certainly have got the point of the question nailed on.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: ShankAsu on April 25, 2016, 11:39:58 AM
There's a few albums I think could be considered polarizing starting with R&H, and including ATYCLB, and SOI.  Pop was generally viewed as a disappointment but it didn't polarize fans.  ATYCLB definitely has two camps and really is where the shift is made to those who like the new millennium U2 and those who don't.  SOI obviously because of the way it was released polarized a lot of people. 
Someone mentioned October, but on a second album I don't know that is possible.  I would have thought Zooropa would be a bit polarizing as it took the new sound of AB to a different level, but it seems most of the fans were willing to follow.
And before it gets brought up, the Original Soundtracks 1 album doesn't qualify as its a Passengers album not U2  :P
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on April 25, 2016, 11:53:14 AM
I suppose the question is polarizing by few.  I think of Polarizing as something that a fair amount of people feel strongly from both sides of the spectrum (either like or dislike). 

With that in mind, I think ATYCLB might be that.  There are a lot of people that think it's fantastic with love for Beautiful Day, Stuck in a Moment, Elevation, etc... then there are a lot that don't like it.  Perhaps many of us that resent that the album is considered U2's best by some  (probably newer fans).  It represents more of a split between pre 2000's U2 fans and those that began being fans with ATYCLB. 

I never had the feeling that fans really hate Pop that much.  I think it was more polarizing to the media.  I suppose a commercial lack of success didn't help, but I don't hear people really say they hate the album.  Heck, I was never much of a fan of the album, and it would always be near the bottom of my favorites list, but I respected it.  The songs are fantastic; most of my problems with it were with production.  This is now where I find myself with SOI, interestingly. 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: redrunningred on April 25, 2016, 11:55:47 AM
Yeah pop was really more polarizing to the mainstream music world, most hardcore fans are it up. I would say ATYCLB.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: codeguy on April 25, 2016, 12:48:55 PM
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Is......?

For my money it has to be Pop - there are people (like myself) who consider it right up there at the very top of the tree in the bands cannon....but then as evidenced by the poll currently running about u2's worst album (albeit a very small sample) where it is running in the bottom 2 or 3 popularity wise, there are people who see it as the nadir of the bands output...

That small poll and my personal opinion aside - it does to me seem to really divide the fan base like no other and very rarely seems to attract indifference.

It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored and I feel that here and in general it is the bands most polarising album...the one that seems to spark off the strongest feelings at opposite ends of the spectrum.

What say you? Is it Pop that polarises the most or another album?

POP, for me, was the album that ended the experimental era for U2. They had previously loved the idea of unique concept albums, sometimes awesome works like Unforgettable Fire, Joshua tree, Achtung Baby, Passengers, Zooropa. Sometimes not so great - Rattle and Hum, POP.

Since POP, U2 has pivoted. When they get experimental, they pull themselves back. Hence the mediocrity of the early 00's work, the pull-back from NLOTH's originally more experimental sound and the rejection of the Rick Rubin and Songs of Ascent albums. All of that second guessing started with the ridicule they got from POP.

As for the album itself, it's not their worst. MOFO, Please, Wake up dead man, Gone and Velvet Dress are great songs. However, I think the album has a lot of mediocre work on it. Discotheque is awful, If god would send his angels is tepid, Last Night on Earth and Do you feel loved are ok, staring at the sun is weak, Miami and Playboy Mansion are meh. If I compare it to Zooropa and Achtung, Baby, I can't rate it.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Blueyedboy on April 25, 2016, 02:33:55 PM
I can't add any more to the party, Pop and ATYCLB are the albums that start the most feuds on these pages so I've got to go with them. However, I will throw R&H into the mix on the basis that it can be loved and hated by the same listener. Somewhere in there is a decent 7 - 8 track album that lost its way.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 25, 2016, 03:21:03 PM
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Is......?

For my money it has to be Pop - there are people (like myself) who consider it right up there at the very top of the tree in the bands cannon....but then as evidenced by the poll currently running about u2's worst album (albeit a very small sample) where it is running in the bottom 2 or 3 popularity wise, there are people who see it as the nadir of the bands output...

That small poll and my personal opinion aside - it does to me seem to really divide the fan base like no other and very rarely seems to attract indifference.

It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored and I feel that here and in general it is the bands most polarising album...the one that seems to spark off the strongest feelings at opposite ends of the spectrum.

What say you? Is it Pop that polarises the most or another album?

POP, for me, was the album that ended the experimental era for U2. They had previously loved the idea of unique concept albums, sometimes awesome works like Unforgettable Fire, Joshua tree, Achtung Baby, Passengers, Zooropa. Sometimes not so great - Rattle and Hum, POP.

Since POP, U2 has pivoted. When they get experimental, they pull themselves back. Hence the mediocrity of the early 00's work, the pull-back from NLOTH's originally more experimental sound and the rejection of the Rick Rubin and Songs of Ascent albums. All of that second guessing started with the ridicule they got from POP.

As for the album itself, it's not their worst. MOFO, Please, Wake up dead man, Gone and Velvet Dress are great songs. However, I think the album has a lot of mediocre work on it. Discotheque is awful, If god would send his angels is tepid, Last Night on Earth and Do you feel loved are ok, staring at the sun is weak, Miami and Playboy Mansion are meh. If I compare it to Zooropa and Achtung, Baby, I can't rate it.

And Pop did not benefit from the terrible, cringe inducing gigs that were supposed to showcase the songs.   Very much a shame because if they had done something to really highlight the sonic adventurousness of the album, its reputation might have been saved.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: WookieeWarrior10 on April 25, 2016, 03:48:43 PM
Gotta' go with Pop. It doesn't feel like it, but over half of the people on this forum hate it while the others love it. We've got a very vocal group of Pop lovers but hardly anyone that says anything against it.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 25, 2016, 04:48:35 PM
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Gotta' go with Pop. It doesn't feel like it, but over half of the people on this forum hate it while the others love it. We've got a very vocal group of Pop lovers but hardly anyone that says anything against it.

that's just because they're all too MOR American...
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Borack on April 25, 2016, 07:51:04 PM
Zooropa.

Some people would state that it was a bold and great record after the roundabout or traffic circle of Achtung Baby ... But some others would still say it was a trip on the wrong route or into a "wrong" direction. A good topic and some great views. Many thanks and be well.

Note: I just discovered that ShankAsu made the same point as mine during a previous post. Apologies for the repeat observation.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: codeguy on April 25, 2016, 11:32:32 PM
Wow what a surprise ..... A thread about U2's most polarizing album turns nasty.....go figure...

For me it's POP by a long shot. And I blame POP for killing experimental U2. Since then, we've had moments of surrender, pardon the pun, but otherwise, a disciplined effort to stick to the formula.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 25, 2016, 11:37:48 PM
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Wow what a surprise ..... A thread about U2's most polarizing album turns nasty.....go figure...

For me it's POP by a long shot. And I blame POP for killing experimental U2. Since then, we've had moments of surrender, pardon the pun, but otherwise, a disciplined effort to stick to the formula.

where did it turn nasty? 

if by chance you are referring to my last post, well that was very tongue in cheek... not meant to be serious whatsoever....
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 26, 2016, 05:03:47 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way. 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: redrunningred on April 26, 2016, 06:48:53 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

I would disagree. I agree that quite often on this forum, the post pop era is seen as sub par, but I don't see its advocates as derided. As a huge fan of U2's 21st century output, I don't feel derided, just disagreed with.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Vox on April 26, 2016, 07:26:18 AM
We could look at this quasi-scientifically by examining at the numbers from the latest @U2 Fan Survey.  http://www.atu2.com/survey/2016/ 

To develop a list of albums which are most polarizing, I looked at albums where the percentage of U2 fans who took the survey were above 2.00% in both the “what’s your favorite U2 album,” and “what’s your least favorite U2 album” questions.   There were only four U2 albums that fit this criteria:  Zooropa, Pop, All That You Can’t Leave Behind, and Songs of Innocence.

Each album/%most favorite/%least favorite:
Zooropa/2.48%/3.83%
Pop/3.00%/9.08%
All That You Can’t Leave Behind/3.96%/2.41%
Songs of Innocence/2.59%/3.23%

Then, I looked at the difference between each number – the bigger the difference in the number, the more polarizing:
Pop:  12.08%
All That You Can’t Leave Behind:  6.37%
Zooropa:  6.31%
Songs of Innocence:  5.82%

So using this method, the most polarizing album is Pop, by a landslide. 

The interesting aberration is All That You Can’t Leave Behind, which is the only album of the four on the list where the percentage of U2 fans who said it was their favorite was higher than those who said it was their least favorite.  Of course, this is no means really scientific – it’s just based on people who are probably fairly highly devout U2 fans who happened to be on the @U2 site to take the survey during the time it was open.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on April 26, 2016, 11:03:13 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

How you perceive things is how you perceive them...nobody else can really change that.

I am not sure who exactly you are aiming your cannon at for 'deriding' you and others but i hope it isn't me....

I personally have and will criticise u2's 00's albums...i have never and won't 'deride' people for liking them....criticising the music and deriding people who like it are two very different things....

The issue here seems to be that you appear to see the criticism of the music as derision of you.....that is something you perceive and therefore something you clearly believe to be true - that is for you to handle.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Johnny Feathers on April 26, 2016, 11:25:55 AM
I'd say it's either Pop or ATYLCB.  One is praised by the die-hard "90's fans" while being derided by fans of their mainstream work, and one is praised by the fans of their most recent swerve to the pop mainstream, and derided by the "90's fans".
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: briscoetheque on April 26, 2016, 11:35:30 AM
I don't think Pop is particularly polarizing. Fans that liked 'old' u2 had already moved on with Achtung or zooropa.

As we see almost daily on this site, it has to be ATYCLB
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 26, 2016, 03:13:57 PM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

How you perceive things is how you perceive them...nobody else can really change that.

I am not sure who exactly you are aiming your cannon at for 'deriding' you and others but i hope it isn't me....

I personally have and will criticise u2's 00's albums...i have never and won't 'deride' people for liking them....criticising the music and deriding people who like it are two very different things....

The issue here seems to be that you appear to see the criticism of the music as derision of you.....that is something you perceive and therefore something you clearly believe to be true - that is for you to handle.

I did overstate my case as redrunningred pointed out - yes, there is little direct criticism of U2 fans on this board who see value in the material on ATYCLB and beyond.  Yet I still detect an sense of cultural elitism in the overblown points made against ATYCLB that infers that people who like it are somehow MOR and unrefined.   I do worry that sometimes people may feel reluctant to express their views that they like a particular song or album because there'll be a chorus of very familiar criticisms to follow.  E.g. a shy retiring creature like me would never let you know how much he loves Elevation. 

I guess I'll have to handle my perception issues by a visit to the doctor given I could've sworn you quoted me twice in the same message, and each time I said the same thing... ?

Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: xy on April 27, 2016, 01:04:00 AM
Pop
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on April 27, 2016, 01:22:56 AM
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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

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... It seems to be hated, adored but never ignored


The band quite happily ignore it.  Maybe that's the real gripe here - you imagine that there's an army of fans out there who hate the album when in reality its only a certain number of people who resent the fact that the band no longer play material off it, who create this straw man of the "anti-Pop" U2 fan? 

I can't say I saw half as many U2 fans complain that Discotheque or SATS weren't played on the last couple of tours, as I witnessed Kate Bush fans crying over the omission of Wuthering Heights at her shows a couple of years back.  Maybe the fact that fans aren't complaining *enough* is the compelling evidence that they're polarised against the album?

You really do seem to look for a barney at times when there isn't one - it is that love hate relationship of ours i think  :).......it was a question with me providing my answer.

Feel free to provide your own rather than look for a barney with me over mine though  :D

There is no 'gripe' as you put it....

That said you raise an interesting point that maybe the general public are either meh about Pop or simply don't really know about it....that is a discussion point on it's own but maybe if it isn't well known or most people are meh about it then it isn't their most polarising - that of course is hard to 'prove'....i suppose for the purposes of this thread it is probably best to stick to judging by the impression we hold from our interactions here and anywhere else we may engage with other fans...

From what i have read i stand by my original suggestion that it is Pop - I am interested in what you think it is (if you believe there is one)

Keep in mind polarising means opposite emotions/opinion -  to cause people to adopt extreme opposing positions: to polarise opinion......you only seem to have focused on perceived dislike or making a point out of me perceiving  some dislike.....the reason i nominated Pop was because it is the album that i see the most extreme emotions for - namely the most vocal love and the most vocal criticism although not always here, here it seems to get silently killed like picking up the 2nd most votes in a worst album poll (along with behind and bomb) so therefore the most polarising taking into account those opposite views and how strong they are.

It seems to be the album the critics either laud or write off the most - again the opposite ends of the spectrum...

No barney between fans who think Pop is U2’s greatest moments, and those who don’t?  Well, there wouldn’t be if there wasn’t a recurrent and highly tedious attempt to deride people who like anything the band made in the 15 years after Pop as somehow MOR  music fans.  You never find fans of October bewailing those who don't share a taste for it as numpties with no ability to appreciate cutting-edge, elite music.  As such I am going to label ATYCLB the most polarising album, but only on this MB.  Among the wider field I find very few critics or listeners who see ATYCLB as “The Great Betrayal”, but here it definitely is seen that way.

How you perceive things is how you perceive them...nobody else can really change that.

I am not sure who exactly you are aiming your cannon at for 'deriding' you and others but i hope it isn't me....

I personally have and will criticise u2's 00's albums...i have never and won't 'deride' people for liking them....criticising the music and deriding people who like it are two very different things....

The issue here seems to be that you appear to see the criticism of the music as derision of you.....that is something you perceive and therefore something you clearly believe to be true - that is for you to handle.

I did overstate my case as redrunningred pointed out - yes, there is little direct criticism of U2 fans on this board who see value in the material on ATYCLB and beyond.  Yet I still detect an sense of cultural elitism in the overblown points made against ATYCLB that infers that people who like it are somehow MOR and unrefined.   I do worry that sometimes people may feel reluctant to express their views that they like a particular song or album because there'll be a chorus of very familiar criticisms to follow.  E.g. a shy retiring creature like me would never let you know how much he loves Elevation. 

I guess I'll have to handle my perception issues by a visit to the doctor given I could've sworn you quoted me twice in the same message, and each time I said the same thing... ?

Was so good i quoted it twice
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on April 27, 2016, 08:20:34 AM
As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on April 27, 2016, 08:22:55 AM
I wonder how many would have answered AB if we would have asked this question in 1995? 

I remember first being on a U2 forum around then and there were quite vocal opponents of AB vs 1980's U2.  AB lost the band some fans.  I wonder if any of those types of fans are here?  I wonder if any came back because of ATYCLB or HTDAAB? 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: iehomecoming on April 27, 2016, 08:33:36 AM
Yeah I was on those early usenet forums too, and AB was a bit of a shock to the system to some, but IIRC it "took" after a while and of course the tours were special.

much more static setlist than now, but such a good setlist that no one seemed to mind and yes people were going to multiple shows and were quite happy with it.

Maybe it was a case of "don't mess with a good thing".

Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.

Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 27, 2016, 08:46:30 AM
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Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.

if there are any Baby Boomers on the forum, they are all thanking you heartily right now.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: imaginary friend on April 27, 2016, 08:53:20 AM
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Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.

if there are any Baby Boomers on the forum, they are all thanking you heartily right now.

and avoiding mirrors.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Thunder Peel on April 27, 2016, 08:54:26 AM
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Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.


I'm a Millennial and I think you're right.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 27, 2016, 08:56:32 AM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.
Title: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Starman on April 27, 2016, 08:57:10 AM
If we're counting it, easily the Passengers album.

If not, Zooropa or Pop. Though October is a worthy mention.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: iehomecoming on April 27, 2016, 08:58:23 AM
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Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.


I'm a Millennial and I think you're right.

It was a couple of Millenial customers I was taking to lunch a couple of days ago that came up with that description.

Hadn't given it much thought till then.



Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on April 27, 2016, 09:09:56 AM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.

once again I largely agree with you on this topic.  the only thing I see differently is the positivity statement about Pop.  I like and appreciate its darker, angrier themes.  It sets the album apart and is one of the reasons I was so disappointed with how they showcased the music on the tour.  Yeah I get it was supposed to be ironic.  Just was not executed well at all, to put it mildly.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 27, 2016, 09:18:30 AM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.

once again I largely agree with you on this topic.  the only thing I see differently is the positivity statement about Pop.  I like and appreciate its darker, angrier themes.  It sets the album apart and is one of the reasons I was so disappointed with how they showcased the music on the tour.  Yeah I get it was supposed to be ironic.  Just was not executed well at all, to put it mildly.

I appreciate darker themes myself but I'm not sure U2 do it as well as bands like Joy Division, The Smiths or Manic Street Preachers.  I feel elated when The Holy Bible by MSP ends with "PCP" but after Pop ends with "Wake Up Dead Man" I feel pretty bleak .  I'm being too hard on Bono, because he was always the figure who saw signs of hope when I didn't.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on April 27, 2016, 04:21:55 PM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.


I never said they created alternative music... but coming from a more pop music background, they were among the first popular musicians to switch over to an alternative influence.  Of course by doing that in combination with bands like you describe and then Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, etc becoming popular, the term alternative lost meaning.

But, I found that the shift from JT and RH to AB was a significant shift if that is what one was a fan of.  I'm not saying it's a bad one either.  For perspective, at the time AB came out, I was 15.  I knew of the JT (all I knew of U2 and perhaps some of RH).  U2 bored me at the time.  I liked popular rock music.  INXS was my favorite band at the time.  I had only just started to discover music like New Order and Joy Division.  But AB was a revelation to me.  I couldn't even recognize it as U2.

But besides that, I also acknowledge that alternative was a dumb term for what really ended up being the mainstream rock of the 90's.  I know that people who liked the real alternative music (i.e. before it became mainstream) would not consider U2 alternative, but they did incorporate that music as an influence (among other things).
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: redrunningred on April 27, 2016, 06:54:32 PM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.


I never said they created alternative music... but coming from a more pop music background, they were among the first popular musicians to switch over to an alternative influence.  Of course by doing that in combination with bands like you describe and then Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, etc becoming popular, the term alternative lost meaning.

But, I found that the shift from JT and RH to AB was a significant shift if that is what one was a fan of.  I'm not saying it's a bad one either.  For perspective, at the time AB came out, I was 15.  I knew of the JT (all I knew of U2 and perhaps some of RH).  U2 bored me at the time.  I liked popular rock music.  INXS was my favorite band at the time.  I had only just started to discover music like New Order and Joy Division.  But AB was a revelation to me.  I couldn't even recognize it as U2.

But besides that, I also acknowledge that alternative was a dumb term for what really ended up being the mainstream rock of the 90's.  I know that people who liked the real alternative music (i.e. before it became mainstream) would not consider U2 alternative, but they did incorporate that music as an influence (among other things).

I think another thing to note about AB baby and why is was so exceptional is how it relates to the band that released it and their circumstances.  The fact that they managed to reinvent their sound so thoroughly is a feat in of itself, but the fact that they managed to use it to successfully keep them relevant in the 1990's being an 1980's power player is incredible.  The 1990's is really when the relevancy of all the legacy bands of the 70's and 80's died out.  1989 was the last time an ex beatle got a top 40 hit, the rolling stones rapidly became irrelevant, grunge killed so many genres.  The fact that U2 managed to incorporate their self into this new world of music is very unique amongst their peers, most of whom died out in the 1990's only to return in the 21st century with 1 remaining founding member to do Vegas residencies. 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: DGordon1 on April 28, 2016, 02:40:14 AM
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Part of the setlist "problem" is the millenials crowd, the most self-absorbed narcissistic entitled generation of all time.

if there are any Baby Boomers on the forum, they are all thanking you heartily right now.

We all use twitter 24/7 because the baby-boomer bankers destroyed the world economy and left us without jobs. Now we just take selfies and pretend everything's grand.

#fundourdolewithyourpensionfunds
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on April 28, 2016, 01:47:22 PM
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As one who has criticized U2's 2000's output in general (but liking many songs from the 2000's), I don't see criticism of that output as criticism of those who do like it.  I actually assume that many people who like the 2000's U2 or who hold post-Pop U2 albums as their favorites are new fans that came on at that time. I can acknowledge that ATYCLB and HTDAAB likely gained U2 many fans.  They are essentially pop albums and would seemingly have a broad appeal in a time when rock music is on the decline.

My own criticism is just that I am not happy with U2 for making such albums, even if they do bring in fans.  My own criticism is also a reflection of my age.  I feel like I've become the cranky old person who doesn't like his kids music.  That's not entirely true because there is plenty of great music out there right now; it's just not in the mainstream very often. 

As for U2, I think it's just a bit frustrating because if you look at what U2 did to start the 90's (just 10 years prior), it was almost the opposite.  And, I am a fan that became a fan when I heard the songs The Fly and Zoo Station for the first time.  I respected a band that could go from The Joshua Tree to AB in a matter of a few years.  And, as a teen in the 90's, I saw what U2 did in the 90's as the real alternative music of the 90's.  I know alternative is a dumb term, but when I look at the evolution U2 had, it makes sense vs. bands that came into their own in the 90's. 

Of course, in retrospect AB now is as U2 as anything, and I suppose that while AB came at a time when alternative was the in thing, Pop was I guess a step too far.  I suspect that if U2 would have made the rawer album that you hear in those Pop teaser/demos, it would have been a bit more successful.  I also suspect that if they would have timed the album a few years later if it would have been more successful.  I really don't think Pop deviates much from what Radiohead did with Kid A.  Albeit, Kid A is perhaps Radiohead's most polarizing album. The advantage they had going forward is that they didn't care whether anyone bought it or not.  Unfortunately, U2 did care, and then the 00's happened.  I only hope the next album at least makes the 10's a bit better.  SOI is a move in a right direction but they still have some ways to get back to the great rock band they were prior to 2000.

Perhaps age has something to do with it, but I’ve been a fan since the early 80s and like many others I regard ATYCLB as a strong album.  Yes, it is undoubtedly an album which plays to their strengths but the production is more interesting than is often allowed for.  Since when has Brian Eno produced banal pop music? 

I really didn’t see AB, Zooropa and Pop as the radical alternative music you seem to have taken it for – and again that might have something to do with age.  At that time I was listening to bands like the Throwing Muses, Pixies, My Bloody Valentine, which made U2 seem positively mainstream by comparison.  It’s all relative.  I just think we need to realise that when U2 made these records they were trying to stay relevant after the failure of the Rattle and Hum project.  The records are original in relation to what they’d done before, and no doubt the records are among their best works, but they’re not what I’d call alternative – they derived from the alternative music scene, they did not create alternative music. 

I’m really glad they made these albums because whilst The Joshua Tree sounded fantastic when it came out, the Rattle and Hum project revealed how staid it would’ve gone if they’d carried on working within a rock paradigm. 

I agree with you that Pop would’ve been far more successful if it had been rawer and more positive, as in the teaser video. The final product is the only time in their career that Bono sounds as if he’s lost hope.  If anything has driven U2’s success it is their ability to see positives amidst the emotional maelstrom.  And yes, the pursuit of success has always guided U2.  The only time they seemed genuinely not to be worried about it was the Passengers project.  Also in the early 80s they had a faith their music would break through even though an album like October was so unfashionable at the time.


I never said they created alternative music... but coming from a more pop music background, they were among the first popular musicians to switch over to an alternative influence.  Of course by doing that in combination with bands like you describe and then Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, etc becoming popular, the term alternative lost meaning.

But, I found that the shift from JT and RH to AB was a significant shift if that is what one was a fan of.  I'm not saying it's a bad one either.  For perspective, at the time AB came out, I was 15.  I knew of the JT (all I knew of U2 and perhaps some of RH).  U2 bored me at the time.  I liked popular rock music.  INXS was my favorite band at the time.  I had only just started to discover music like New Order and Joy Division.  But AB was a revelation to me.  I couldn't even recognize it as U2.

But besides that, I also acknowledge that alternative was a dumb term for what really ended up being the mainstream rock of the 90's.  I know that people who liked the real alternative music (i.e. before it became mainstream) would not consider U2 alternative, but they did incorporate that music as an influence (among other things).

Thanks for explaining how you came at AB.  Surely it was a huge success in terms of introducing interesting sounds and ideas to the mainstream public.  It came out about the same time as Nevermind by Nirvana, so was on the cusp of that "alternative becomes mainstream" moment. 

You're right it was hard to recognise it as the same band that had made The Joshua Tree.  Just as I couldn't believe it was the same band on The Unforgettable Fire as on the War and Under a Blood Red Sky releases.  In particular, I appreciate that Bono stopped with the cowboy macho look and embraced a more complex persona.  And musically, songs like Until the End of the World, So Cruel and Ultraviolet took the band to places I never thought they'd go.  The fanbase massively diversified with AB and for that we should be grateful.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Blueyedboy on April 28, 2016, 02:22:38 PM
My own thoughts on Pop is that if you swap its release date with that of Zooropa then it would be the latter that splits opinion while Pop would be lauded for what it is, a playful album full of heavy lyrics and kick ass tunes. Zooropa got away with it due to its timing and unmistakeable links to AB and Zoo TV. Had it been released in 97 then it would make little sense as all momentum was lost by the 4 year hiatus.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on May 02, 2016, 12:16:20 PM
I still also think that marketing and title ruined Pop.  Pop was a silly name for the album and set up a weird expectation that wasn't helped by U2's marketing strategy. 

I imagine there was a goal to be ironic, but unless people are aware that the band is trying to be ironic, the intent is lost.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: il_capo on May 02, 2016, 12:41:41 PM
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I still also think that marketing and title ruined Pop.  Pop was a silly name for the album and set up a weird expectation that wasn't helped by U2's marketing strategy. 

I imagine there was a goal to be ironic, but unless people are aware that the band is trying to be ironic, the intent is lost.

I also don't like the title.  Of course, after listening to the record you realise it is ironic, but given the weight of the material and the topics covered might not a more serious title have helped?  I'm not saying call it "War" but something like "Wake Up Dead Man" would've be better IMO.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: emalvick on May 02, 2016, 01:24:21 PM
It could have been as simple as calling it "Pop?"

Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on May 02, 2016, 01:31:40 PM
I remember hearing or reading "Discola" as a working title.

Love the sound of that.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: NOLA Fly on May 02, 2016, 02:04:22 PM
On this board, it's ATYCLB. It seems some feel betrayed by it and view it as a retreat, while some, like me, love it and see it as the logical next step after the irony drenched 90's. At least, that's how I see the split among older fans. I know there is also a large number of younger fans whose first exposure to U2 was ATYCLB.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: WookieeWarrior10 on May 02, 2016, 07:51:31 PM
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I remember hearing or reading "Discola" as a working title.

Love the sound of that.
Never heard this, sounds like a cool follow-up to Pop!

Just looked it up, apparently it was considered as being the name of Pop and I think the song Discotheque as well.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: an tha on May 03, 2016, 03:02:38 AM
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I remember hearing or reading "Discola" as a working title.

Love the sound of that.
Never heard this, sounds like a cool follow-up to Pop!

Just looked it up, apparently it was considered as being the name of Pop and I think the song Discotheque as well.

Was a working title yes......its a belter of a name!
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Thunder Peel on May 03, 2016, 07:51:19 AM
I've always Pop was a weird title for the album. I understand that it was supposed to be ironic but the PopMart Tour already had plenty of irony and represented the message well. It's not a horrible name but something with a bit more grit probably would have worked better in the long run. I kind of like that Discola name! ;D
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Doc_Holiday on May 05, 2016, 09:38:14 PM
I completely agree that Pop was not a wise choice for an album title... XD
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: LightMyWay92 on July 07, 2016, 09:12:50 PM
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I completely agree that Pop was not a wise choice for an album title... XD
The title did seem disappointing when I first heard it before the album came out.  Then came the electronic, techno sound of the actual album, then the costumes and then the stage show. 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Cam501 on July 07, 2016, 10:30:09 PM
Polarizing or not I really like Pop.  But I am also biased and find SOI to be their weakest post 80s album and probably 2nd worst ever.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: shineinthesummernight on July 07, 2016, 10:40:03 PM
I enjoy "Pop" and think most fans would also find something they like on that album.  As far as the most polarizing album, I would nominate either "NLOTH" or "October", both of which I love but which seem to get a fair share of criticism on this forum.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Matty_Mullens on July 08, 2016, 07:46:39 AM
I'll say this.  Every time U2 releases an album, it polarises its audience.  Some fans love it and some fans hate it.  Whether its Achtung Baby (Bono : "We'll lose some of the pop kids but we don't need them") or Songs of Innocence, U2 loses some fans but ends up gaining some new ones.

Live is where U2 lives.  I like to judge an album on its recorded version as well as its live version.  In that case,  albums like Pop and ATYCLB are excellent in that sense.  These two albums create a lot of discussion, whether its love or hate.

Consider a short set concert like this:

1.) Beautiful Day
2.) Discotheque
3.) Elevation
4.) Last Night on Earth
5.) Gone
6.) Stuck in a Moment...
7.) Kite
8.) Mofo
9.) Please
10.) Walk On

What other band or artist could have a show as good as this only playing songs from its arguably two most polarising albums?
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: MEMORY_MAN on July 08, 2016, 10:48:20 AM
Check out this article:  The Story of U2's Polarizing 'Zooropa'.  http://diffuser.fm/u2-zooropa-anniversary/#photogallery-1=10 (http://diffuser.fm/u2-zooropa-anniversary/#photogallery-1=10)

What do you think of their album ranking?
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Dali on July 08, 2016, 10:58:51 AM
HTDAAB. It's probably the best selling album of its day and thus immensely popular, yet a huge number of fans of the band's music (including me) think it's their worst album since "October". Also, it does manage to not sound like a whole, yet too same-y all the same.

When it came out, it was much more polarizing on this board than ATYCLB was. Plus, it sold better than that album, which cannot be said about its follow-up NLOTH which was also being very controversially discussed here.

Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Cam501 on July 08, 2016, 11:33:24 AM
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Check out this article:  The Story of U2's Polarizing 'Zooropa'.  http://diffuser.fm/u2-zooropa-anniversary/#photogallery-1=10 (http://diffuser.fm/u2-zooropa-anniversary/#photogallery-1=10)

What do you think of their album ranking?

It's not bad.  My main disagreements are on Boy, Bomb, and SOI.  I'd lower all of those from their rankings.  SOI sits in the cellar just above October for me.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: shineinthesummernight on July 08, 2016, 11:34:32 PM
I would place "The Joshua Tree" before "Boy". 
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: SlyDanner on July 09, 2016, 11:05:08 AM
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I'll say this.  Every time U2 releases an album, it polarises its audience.  Some fans love it and some fans hate it.  Whether its Achtung Baby (Bono : "We'll lose some of the pop kids but we don't need them") or Songs of Innocence, U2 loses some fans but ends up gaining some new ones.

Live is where U2 lives.  I like to judge an album on its recorded version as well as its live version.  In that case,  albums like Pop and ATYCLB are excellent in that sense.  These two albums create a lot of discussion, whether its love or hate.

Consider a short set concert like this:

1.) Beautiful Day
2.) Discotheque
3.) Elevation
4.) Last Night on Earth
5.) Gone
6.) Stuck in a Moment...
7.) Kite
8.) Mofo
9.) Please
10.) Walk On

What other band or artist could have a show as good as this only playing songs from its arguably two most polarising albums?

Yes indeed, great post...
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Matty_Mullens on July 10, 2016, 12:50:12 PM
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I'll say this.  Every time U2 releases an album, it polarises its audience.  Some fans love it and some fans hate it.  Whether its Achtung Baby (Bono : "We'll lose some of the pop kids but we don't need them") or Songs of Innocence, U2 loses some fans but ends up gaining some new ones.

Live is where U2 lives.  I like to judge an album on its recorded version as well as its live version.  In that case,  albums like Pop and ATYCLB are excellent in that sense.  These two albums create a lot of discussion, whether its love or hate.

Consider a short set concert like this:

1.) Beautiful Day
2.) Discotheque
3.) Elevation
4.) Last Night on Earth
5.) Gone
6.) Stuck in a Moment...
7.) Kite
8.) Mofo
9.) Please
10.) Walk On

What other band or artist could have a show as good as this only playing songs from its arguably two most polarising albums?

Yes indeed, great post...

Thanks
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Bonobos on July 12, 2016, 05:03:36 AM
October
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Johnny Feathers on July 12, 2016, 10:53:02 AM
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October

Really?  I thought October was maybe U2's  most universally-maligned album.  It's always at the bottom of the polls.  It's like everyone agrees Achtung Baby is great, and everyone agrees October is, if not bad, then maybe their worst album.  (Though I would say NLOTH is easily their worst.)
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Cam501 on July 12, 2016, 09:43:36 PM
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October

Really?  I thought October was maybe U2's  most universally-maligned album.  It's always at the bottom of the polls.  It's like everyone agrees Achtung Baby is great, and everyone agrees October is, if not bad, then maybe their worst album.  (Though I would say NLOTH is easily their worst.)

I'd easily put both SOI and October below NLOTH.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Quester11 on July 12, 2016, 10:43:21 PM
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I'd actually wager that October is the most polarizing. People either love it or hate it, whereas records like Pop and NLOTH tend to have more varied opinions.

I don't really know anyone who hates October. People seem to either love it, like it, or ignore it.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Johnny Feathers on July 12, 2016, 10:46:39 PM
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I'd actually wager that October is the most polarizing. People either love it or hate it, whereas records like Pop and NLOTH tend to have more varied opinions.

I don't really know anyone who hates October. People seem to either love it, like it, or ignore it.

Hate is a strong word. But even among people who claim to love it, it tends to float near the bottom of most polls. I think it's actually a fairly strong album....it's just that they kept making stronger ones.


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Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Matty_Mullens on July 13, 2016, 01:20:56 PM
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October

Really?  I thought October was maybe U2's  most universally-maligned album.  It's always at the bottom of the polls.  It's like everyone agrees Achtung Baby is great, and everyone agrees October is, if not bad, then maybe their worst album.  (Though I would say NLOTH is easily their worst.)

I'd easily put both SOI and October below NLOTH.

I'd also put SOI and October below NLOTH
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: Quester11 on July 13, 2016, 06:49:28 PM
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I'd actually wager that October is the most polarizing. People either love it or hate it, whereas records like Pop and NLOTH tend to have more varied opinions.

I don't really know anyone who hates October. People seem to either love it, like it, or ignore it.

Hate is a strong word. But even among people who claim to love it, it tends to float near the bottom of most polls. I think it's actually a fairly strong album....it's just that they kept making stronger ones.


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I define something that's polarising as something that's divisive among the fanbase. I've seen very few people arguing about October.
Title: Re: U2's Most Polarising Album.
Post by: shineinthesummernight on July 13, 2016, 07:50:45 PM
I love "October".  I especially like to play it loud in my car.  Larry had some fine drum work on that one!