@U2 Forum

U2 => The Band => Topic started by: habib2343 on January 08, 2020, 01:51:36 PM

Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: habib2343 on January 08, 2020, 01:51:36 PM
Belated new year folks,

So i've come across https://www.u2songs.com/news/the_crystal_ball_2020_and_beyond which speculates on the bands plans for the coming decade.

Have to say I'm pleased the band haven't decided to shut up shop just yet but the next decade will take them up to 70 which is probably when they will shut down definitively as a band and reflect on a spectacular and highly envious career.

I predict the following projects will occur.

1. 2 new albums with 2-3 year intervals in between and a scaled down arena tour to support both or just one. Maximum 2 dvd live releases from new out put that they release

2. an AB retrospective tour- surely the success of the jt tour has the band's record company planning a ab/zootv revival. I suggest it should be called zoo-lite to mark the bands' advanced years :-)

3. a U2 box set in the mould of the rolling stones forty licks and their other repeated compilations from 1976 to the present day. This will be a huge endeavour with the standard version retailing at £199.99

4. U2 radio x eventually to be spread to everywhere outside of America..

a perfect way to end their career I feel and fans get everything they ever wante from the band...

a toast please to the bands' next 10 years ( health permitting of course )....
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 08, 2020, 03:23:04 PM
I think that they should seriously consider hanging it up...  The Stones, Paul McCartney, The Who, etc. have all gone long past their expiry dates and it's tarnished their respective legacies, in my opinion...  U2 are STILL near top of their game with the live shows and they should be remembered as such...  the albums are a mere shadow of what they used to be, and have been for a long time...  'Songs of Experience' bucked this trend and would be a nice sound off instead of tabling yet another lackluster 'Innocence' record, something that the latest 'Ahimsa' single unfortunately foreshadows...

1)  in regards to recording...  while you're on this extended break between tours right now, meet up when you guys feel like it and just record whatever comes out...  don't plan to release any new album before the next tour...  avoid ANY talk of a 'Songs of Ascent' project and lose the pretensions, period...  only channel out from within and only if everyone's feeling it...  if it's not happening?  then shelve it...  the demand for unreleased U2 recordings expands exponentially as the years go by...  especially if the band retires...  there's all ready a treasure trove to make a handsome box set...  an unreleased project recorded during their twilight years is icing on the cake...

2)  one last extensive stadium tour to commemorate 'ZOOTV'...  leave lots of room to play whatever they want to play live one last time (that's what THEY want to play, not the fans...  keep it real)...  keep on writing/recording during the tour if they feel like it...  if you have to transform your soundcheck into a recording session to pull it off then do it...  chances are the new ideas will sound better in a live setting anyways...  no discussions about producers...  the sound guy can be your engineer and just work with that for the time being...

the last album, which I consider to be their best since 'Zooropa', wasn't the commercial success it should've been and there are a few reasons why...  'The Little Things That Give You Away', 'The Blackout', 'You're The Best Thing About Me', 'American Soul', and 'Get Out Of Your Own Way' were all performed/released well before the album's release...  it was "old before it's new" and suffered because of it... even the album's title was revealed, what?  years before release?  too many production credits and a conscience effort to be "relevant" at their age also tainted an otherwise excellent U2 record...  lyrically and musically...

radio nowadays is a lost medium...  forget about targeting single releases...  'Magnificent' is the most recent U2 song that I've heard on the radio since, well...  'Magnificent'...  and I still listen to the radio a lot more than the average music fan today...  what's on the radio now are the classics that us older folk work along to, and then there's the modern day garbage that rarely even showcases a musical instrument, let alone someone with "musical" ability...  U2 have been trying to balance themselves between the two and oughta by now realize that it just ain't jivin' with the masses...  go back to what you do best and "unlearn" anything that you thought you've learned in the last couple of decades...  and it all starts with playing live...  the 'ZOOTV' experiment brought us one of U2's best records in 'Zooropa'...  they weren't pushing for a deadline, nor promising us a new album...  they just dropped it on us...  as it happened...

I used to be all for the artists, such as the ones mentioned above, who yearn to still play in their 70's...  one of the things that I feel has ruined it is the use of cellphones and today's tech to record just about every show...  if there was no recording then one would have a fond memory of seeing/hearing Paul McCartney belt out 'Helter Skelter' in a stadium setting at his age...  except that upon listening to it back it's painfully obvious that his voice isn't anywhere near what it used to be to carry such a heavyweight through smaller speakers (the kind the majority of fans actually use)...  he just sounds bad...  or, like an old man in his 70's trying to recapture his youth, and rather unsuccessfully...  I'd hate for U2 to go down this road...  go out with a bang, I say...:-)
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 08, 2020, 07:26:28 PM
I’ve never understood this mindset about an artist ruining their legacy by continuing to perform past their prime.  How does mediocrity in 2020 in any way take away from earlier accomplishment?  Personally, I think most of the tracks on the last two albums and the last couple of tours were pretty lame.  In no way does that change the sound waves that are encoded into a Joshua Tree CD.  The data is bit-for-bit identical to what it was in 1987.  It was and is a great album.

Music is not like school where your grades are averaged and you pull down your GPA when you do subpar work.  Each work stands on its own.  I really don’t care how “U2 is remembered”. I don’t have my identity co-mingled with theirs.

I think Paul McCartney’s last album was pretty good.  I think U2 could still have some good music in them.  Why would anyone want to miss out on the possibility of more good music just to avoid the risk of....what?  Being embarrassed because your favorite band laid a turd?
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 08, 2020, 09:45:52 PM
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Music is not like school where your grades are averaged and you pull down your GPA when you do subpar work.  Each work stands on its own.

I'd have to disagree...  U2 are one of a select few who belong in the same class (pun intended) as some of the others mentioned above...  and they run the risk of not making the same grade as The Beatles who never made a bad album (U2's made atleast one + other subpar efforts)...  you run the risk of this generation turning down their iphones during the first verse of 'The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)' before even giving 'Achtung, Baby' a chance...  yes, your 'Body of Work' is graded over time and whether unfairly judged or not, doesn't matter...  you never get a second chance to make a first impression...

The Beatles ended before they deteriorated...  it's why they are still held in the same regard as they were way back then...  unlike The Stones, or even Elvis for that matter...  The Stones are a better comparison for the tours are what's carried them past their prime much like it has for U2...  except The Stones never really did sound all that good live, even during the late 60's/early 70's and it's been all downhill since...  U2 still pulls off their live act and, in the case for 'The Joshua Tree Tour' actually outdid the original show 30 years later I felt...  the same potential exists for 'ZOOTV'...  they'd cement their legacy much brighter by ending it here instead of "U2?  you mean that old 80's band that doesn't know when to quit?"

The Beatles were right to have turned down the many lucrative offers to reunite...  any recording would've been compared to 'Abbey Road' and likely fallen short...  Abba is about to experience the same with their latest recordings...  regardless of what one feels about their Abbatar Tour, they were right to not perform live again and we'll see how the new material affects their stunning Body of Work...  if it bombs then yes, it's a blemish on their legacy...  people will say that "they shoulda quit while they were ahead"...  turning down a reported billion dollar offer to reunite years back was a good call...  I believe that U2 does care about their legacy as well...  it's why they try so hard to be "relevant" these days...

alot of younger folk here in Canada actually associate the song 'Where The Streets Have No Name' with the NHL Vancouver Hockey Club instead of the band for it was played as the teams skated out onto the ice at the start of every Canuck's home game for many years...  they're not listening to the classic rock radio stations and likely haven't seen the old LA Liquor Store Rooftop video...  yes, some fans bring their kids to the shows to show 'em what U2's all about but the vast majority leave the kids at home...  mine even commented on how they felt like the youngest people in the stadium which wasn't that far off from the truth...

it's different with The Beatles...  kids STILL respond almost instantly to their music...  they hear 'Yellow Submarine' and wanna hear more...  kids hear 'The Showman' and struggle to find something polite to say as they quickly exit to their earbuds for something else instead...  you may not care but I'm thinking that U2 does...:-)

 
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: pan360 on January 09, 2020, 01:38:05 AM
If they renewed their contract as u2songs article claims we can expect two more albums: the rock album Bono has mentioned and hopefully the Songs of Ascent as a final cooperation with Brian Eno. I find it cool that they will accompany us for another decade. I do believe that they care about their legacy and I don't agree that the last two albums have ruined this legacy. In every U2 era fans have been lost but new have been gained. May be not so many nowadays but this has nothing to do with U2. It is just that times have changed. SOI & SOE have their place in U2's catalogue and I am sure that they will be more appreciated in the future.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 09, 2020, 05:39:33 AM
I guess you missed my point.  I don’t care if kids today like U2 or kids in 2050 like U2.  I don’t care who else does or doesn’t like or respect U2.  It doesn’t change what I hear when I listen to the U2 music that I like.  U2 is not like a religion to me where I feel like I need to evangelize to others and convince them of their worth.  If I was a member of U2 I might care about my “legacy”.  But I am not U2.  If they end their career with 3 crappy albums instead of quitting early it just means I have an extra 3 albums of U2 music to listen to.  Maybe they aren’t worth listening to.  But I don’t have to listen to them.  I’m no worse off than if they quit three albums ago.

I guess to some, caring about U2’s legacy means caring what other people think about U2’s music, or being able to have some untarnished admiration of U2 as people as opposed to appreciating and enjoying whatever good music they created.  If that was something I cared about, I would admire more the artist who keeps pursuing their passion as long as they can without being worried about how they will be regarded if they fail.  Why is fear more admirable than courage?
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 09, 2020, 02:14:10 PM
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If they renewed their contract as u2songs article claims we can expect two more albums

I'm thinking that U2 have some sort of "break up/retirement clause" penciled in there somewhere but for argument's sake, let's just say that they are in fact committed to "two more albums"...  U2 have an extensive archive to draw from all ready...  they could easily release "two more albums" of material without ever having to play another note together...  contract completed...

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hopefully the Songs of Ascent as a final cooperation with Brian Eno

bad idea...  the 'iNNOCENCE' album was given away for free to the masses and they still had trouble selling out arenas afterwards...  'eXPERIENCE' didn't fare any better so why continue down an 'aSCENT' road?...  you're all ready putting limits on your creativity by declaring this as your intention...  sure, it's just a title and could mean nothing but that might even play out worse for them...  'i+e' are albums that are two halves of one whole...  there are multiple references to each other, such as 'Volcano'/'American Soul' (you are rock'n'roll), 'Iris (Hold Me Close)'/'Lights of Home' (free yourself to be yourself), etc. and the only way to "ascend" from this is to move on...  the title and lyrics are your best starting point...  why title your new album (potentially your last hurrah) as some sort of connecting chapter to an entirely different book?  and one that didn't even sell all that well to begin with...  is the next tour supposed to be call 'i+e+a'?!  or wait...  since we're going on about continuity, how about 'a+e+i'?  the 'e+i' U.S. tour saw a lot of empty seats throughout, they'll be reduced to playing theatres if they go this route...

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In every U2 era fans have been lost but new have been gained

this notion is often overplayed...  it all stems from the big shift between 'The Joshua Tree' & 'Achtung, Baby' where they indeed abandoned a sizeable chunk of their following for greener pastures and, yes...  it was a wise gamble...  unfortunately, it hasn't worked out for them since...  the shift to 'POP' was near a disaster...  the album's a mess and the tour cost more to stage than it took in...  the PopMart show I attended in Vancouver was maybe 2/3 full, and that's being generous...  this was their first Vancouver show in over 5 years and should've sold out in hours...  for every fan that they supposedly gained, there's probably close to a dozen that were completely turned off...  the next shift saw them scrambling to win back the hearts of those that they abandoned long ago by declaring themselves a "rock'n'roll band" again...  this was a safe gamble for it's not like the PopMartians were exactly an astronomical demographic to abandon anyway...  all they had to do was to release a 'Best Of' compilation to reacquaint themselves with their old following and get back to playing some good old rock'n'roll…

the band would try to gamble their past away yet again with the more experimental 'No Line On The Horizon' record after two really solid rock albums, but it was a much more safer approach than completely disregarding their rock'n'roll bread & butter...  the album was companioned with their most commercially successful tour, and one that relied heavily on their well known classics...  the experimental album was kinda lost throughout the 360 spectacle...  most fans remember 'Magnificent' and that's about it...  the next shifting of gears was to attempt to become more "relevant" to today's scene which meant, yet again...  abandoning their rock'n'roll roots and partnering with today's stars/producers...  except that they didn't completely abandon their rock'n'roll bloodlines and tried to mash it up with modern day sounds/technologies and it hasn't really worked out for them...  if it wasn't for the 30th Anniversary tour of 2017 to remind their audiences of their classics, I'd hate to see the state of their "legacy" right now...  the 'e+i' tour didn't sell as well as it should've and neither did the recent 2019 tour where only a handful of shows sold out, and this is a part of the world that hadn't seen them tour in ages...  they're losing fans considerably more than they are gaining them...  this is OK if they're staying true to their art but by their own admission they're not...  that "relevant" word keeps coming to mind...  they're trying to be something that they're not and it's not working...  they've become followers instead of leaders...:-)
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 09, 2020, 05:20:59 PM
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If they renewed their contract as u2songs article claims we can expect two more albums

I'm thinking that U2 have some sort of "break up/retirement clause" penciled in there somewhere but for argument's sake, let's just say that they are in fact committed to "two more albums"...  U2 have an extensive archive to draw from all ready...  they could easily release "two more albums" of material without ever having to play another note together...  contract completed...

You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
hopefully the Songs of Ascent as a final cooperation with Brian Eno

bad idea...  the 'iNNOCENCE' album was given away for free to the masses and they still had trouble selling out arenas afterwards...  'eXPERIENCE' didn't fare any better so why continue down an 'aSCENT' road?...  you're all ready putting limits on your creativity by declaring this as your intention...  sure, it's just a title and could mean nothing but that might even play out worse for them...  'i+e' are albums that are two halves of one whole...  there are multiple references to each other, such as 'Volcano'/'American Soul' (you are rock'n'roll), 'Iris (Hold Me Close)'/'Lights of Home' (free yourself to be yourself), etc. and the only way to "ascend" from this is to move on...  the title and lyrics are your best starting point...  why title your new album (potentially your last hurrah) as some sort of connecting chapter to an entirely different book?  and one that didn't even sell all that well to begin with...  is the next tour supposed to be call 'i+e+a'?!  or wait...  since we're going on about continuity, how about 'a+e+i'?  the 'e+i' U.S. tour saw a lot of empty seats throughout, they'll be reduced to playing theatres if they go this route...

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In every U2 era fans have been lost but new have been gained

this notion is often overplayed...  it all stems from the big shift between 'The Joshua Tree' & 'Achtung, Baby' where they indeed abandoned a sizeable chunk of their following for greener pastures and, yes...  it was a wise gamble...  unfortunately, it hasn't worked out for them since...  the shift to 'POP' was near a disaster...  the album's a mess and the tour cost more to stage than it took in...  the PopMart show I attended in Vancouver was maybe 2/3 full, and that's being generous...  this was their first Vancouver show in over 5 years and should've sold out in hours...  for every fan that they supposedly gained, there's probably close to a dozen that were completely turned off...  the next shift saw them scrambling to win back the hearts of those that they abandoned long ago by declaring themselves a "rock'n'roll band" again...  this was a safe gamble for it's not like the PopMartians were exactly an astronomical demographic to abandon anyway...  all they had to do was to release a 'Best Of' compilation to reacquaint themselves with their old following and get back to playing some good old rock'n'roll…

the band would try to gamble their past away yet again with the more experimental 'No Line On The Horizon' record after two really solid rock albums, but it was a much more safer approach than completely disregarding their rock'n'roll bread & butter...  the album was companioned with their most commercially successful tour, and one that relied heavily on their well known classics...  the experimental album was kinda lost throughout the 360 spectacle...  most fans remember 'Magnificent' and that's about it...  the next shifting of gears was to attempt to become more "relevant" to today's scene which meant, yet again...  abandoning their rock'n'roll roots and partnering with today's stars/producers...  except that they didn't completely abandon their rock'n'roll bloodlines and tried to mash it up with modern day sounds/technologies and it hasn't really worked out for them...  if it wasn't for the 30th Anniversary tour of 2017 to remind their audiences of their classics, I'd hate to see the state of their "legacy" right now...  the 'e+i' tour didn't sell as well as it should've and neither did the recent 2019 tour where only a handful of shows sold out, and this is a part of the world that hadn't seen them tour in ages...  they're losing fans considerably more than they are gaining them...  this is OK if they're staying true to their art but by their own admission they're not...  that "relevant" word keeps coming to mind...  they're trying to be something that they're not and it's not working...  they've become followers instead of leaders...:-)
Now all this, Mr Rhythm, I agree with.


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: pan360 on January 09, 2020, 11:18:45 PM
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If they renewed their contract as u2songs article claims we can expect two more albums

I'm thinking that U2 have some sort of "break up/retirement clause" penciled in there somewhere but for argument's sake, let's just say that they are in fact committed to "two more albums"...  U2 have an extensive archive to draw from all ready...  they could easily release "two more albums" of material without ever having to play another note together...  contract completed...

You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
hopefully the Songs of Ascent as a final cooperation with Brian Eno

bad idea...  the 'iNNOCENCE' album was given away for free to the masses and they still had trouble selling out arenas afterwards...  'eXPERIENCE' didn't fare any better so why continue down an 'aSCENT' road?...  you're all ready putting limits on your creativity by declaring this as your intention...  sure, it's just a title and could mean nothing but that might even play out worse for them...  'i+e' are albums that are two halves of one whole...  there are multiple references to each other, such as 'Volcano'/'American Soul' (you are rock'n'roll), 'Iris (Hold Me Close)'/'Lights of Home' (free yourself to be yourself), etc. and the only way to "ascend" from this is to move on...  the title and lyrics are your best starting point...  why title your new album (potentially your last hurrah) as some sort of connecting chapter to an entirely different book?  and one that didn't even sell all that well to begin with...  is the next tour supposed to be call 'i+e+a'?!  or wait...  since we're going on about continuity, how about 'a+e+i'?  the 'e+i' U.S. tour saw a lot of empty seats throughout, they'll be reduced to playing theatres if they go this route...

You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
In every U2 era fans have been lost but new have been gained

this notion is often overplayed...  it all stems from the big shift between 'The Joshua Tree' & 'Achtung, Baby' where they indeed abandoned a sizeable chunk of their following for greener pastures and, yes...  it was a wise gamble...  unfortunately, it hasn't worked out for them since...  the shift to 'POP' was near a disaster...  the album's a mess and the tour cost more to stage than it took in...  the PopMart show I attended in Vancouver was maybe 2/3 full, and that's being generous...  this was their first Vancouver show in over 5 years and should've sold out in hours...  for every fan that they supposedly gained, there's probably close to a dozen that were completely turned off...  the next shift saw them scrambling to win back the hearts of those that they abandoned long ago by declaring themselves a "rock'n'roll band" again...  this was a safe gamble for it's not like the PopMartians were exactly an astronomical demographic to abandon anyway...  all they had to do was to release a 'Best Of' compilation to reacquaint themselves with their old following and get back to playing some good old rock'n'roll…

the band would try to gamble their past away yet again with the more experimental 'No Line On The Horizon' record after two really solid rock albums, but it was a much more safer approach than completely disregarding their rock'n'roll bread & butter...  the album was companioned with their most commercially successful tour, and one that relied heavily on their well known classics...  the experimental album was kinda lost throughout the 360 spectacle...  most fans remember 'Magnificent' and that's about it...  the next shifting of gears was to attempt to become more "relevant" to today's scene which meant, yet again...  abandoning their rock'n'roll roots and partnering with today's stars/producers...  except that they didn't completely abandon their rock'n'roll bloodlines and tried to mash it up with modern day sounds/technologies and it hasn't really worked out for them...  if it wasn't for the 30th Anniversary tour of 2017 to remind their audiences of their classics, I'd hate to see the state of their "legacy" right now...  the 'e+i' tour didn't sell as well as it should've and neither did the recent 2019 tour where only a handful of shows sold out, and this is a part of the world that hadn't seen them tour in ages...  they're losing fans considerably more than they are gaining them...  this is OK if they're staying true to their art but by their own admission they're not...  that "relevant" word keeps coming to mind...  they're trying to be something that they're not and it's not working...  they've become followers instead of leaders...:-)

You have some good points here.

Regarding Songs of Ascent: From a marketing perspective may be not a good idea but then if they think this way it means they let business get in the way of their creativity. I would not expect bridges between SOA and SOI/SOE because it is a product from NLOTH era. But even if there were any, it would not necessarily limit their creativity.

Regarding POP: the “disaster” you mention had nothing to do with the music itself but with the marketing and the overall “packaging”. The music is just fine and the album is not so experimental as many people were led to believe. They were not brave enough to create an album sounding like MOFO and they ended up creating a U2 rock album influenced by electronica.

You mention “the next shifting of gears was to attempt to become more "relevant" to today's scene which meant, yet again...  abandoning their rock'n'roll roots and partnering with today's stars/producers.” Wanting to stay relevant is not necessarily a bad thing and it is not the first time U2 attempt something like this. Working with Howie B during POP is a similar case of them wanting to incorporate that time’s scene in their music. And for many POP is a great album. But even then as I mentioned before they didn’t really abandon their rock'n'roll roots. From the very beginning U2 were influenced by their producers and this is not a bad thing as it delivered albums such as UF, POP and NLOTH. Even the idea of working with multiple producers to add variety in their sound is not new. If I am not wrong I was reading about it in the Bill Flanagan’s book.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 09, 2020, 11:57:29 PM
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Regarding POP: the “disaster” you mention had nothing to do with the music itself but with the marketing and the overall “packaging”. The music is just fine and the album is not so experimental as many people were led to believe

I'd have to disagree there...  the album itself was clearly the problem...  it was marketed/promoted quite intensely in fact...  the lead off single went to number one and was played everywhere, whether visually on MTV or heard on the airwaves...  'Discotheque' is arguably their one perfected studio track that leaves very little for improvement and it promised great things to come...  except that the album tracks which followed it don't come anywhere near measuring up to the high standard that it set...  yes, some very good songs but the sound/production and performances are all over the place...  the band themselves admit that they ran out of time finishing it and it shows...

the marketing itself however, was full scale and matched up with the colossal tour production...  opening night in Vegas was a brilliant marketing move...  the giant lemon fit right into the Vegas skyline...  people just weren't into what they were doing at the time...  the Seattle grunge scene and garage bands ruled the day, the exact opposite of what U2 were up to...  people were curious about the album but lost interest in it almost immediately after release...  the blame has to lie with the music for it was heavily promoted with no shortage of cash...:-) 
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: pan360 on January 10, 2020, 01:38:39 AM
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Regarding POP: the “disaster” you mention had nothing to do with the music itself but with the marketing and the overall “packaging”. The music is just fine and the album is not so experimental as many people were led to believe

I'd have to disagree there...  the album itself was clearly the problem...  it was marketed/promoted quite intensely in fact...  the lead off single went to number one and was played everywhere, whether visually on MTV or heard on the airwaves...  'Discotheque' is arguably their one perfected studio track that leaves very little for improvement and it promised great things to come...  except that the album tracks which followed it don't come anywhere near measuring up to the high standard that it set...  yes, some very good songs but the sound/production and performances are all over the place...  the band themselves admit that they ran out of time finishing it and it shows...

the marketing itself however, was full scale and matched up with the colossal tour production...  opening night in Vegas was a brilliant marketing move...  the giant lemon fit right into the Vegas skyline...  people just weren't into what they were doing at the time...  the Seattle grunge scene and garage bands ruled the day, the exact opposite of what U2 were up to...  people were curious about the album but lost interest in it almost immediately after release...  the blame has to lie with the music for it was heavily promoted with no shortage of cash...:-)

It is a fact that people in the US did not understand what U2 were doing at that time and this is why the tour was not well received. However, the album as well as the first three singles did well in the US charts. This is why I believe that the problem was not in the music but in the overall concept of the tour, the pop packaging thing. I believe things were better in Europe. I am happy that they did not have more time to finish the album. If the had it would probably sound even less experimental. The mixes of the three songs ended up in the Best Of confirm it.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 10, 2020, 10:27:12 AM
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It is a fact that people in the US did not understand what U2 were doing at that time and this is why the tour was not well received. However, the album as well as the first three singles did well in the US charts. This is why I believe that the problem was not in the music but in the overall concept of the tour, the pop packaging thing. I believe things were better in Europe. I am happy that they did not have more time to finish the album. If the had it would probably sound even less experimental. The mixes of the three songs ended up in the Best Of confirm it.

I don't recall that "the tour was not well received", in fact, most who had the pleasure marveled at the elaborate stage production...  the complaints I recalled were all about the music...  you had alot of hype there and lack of substance to justify it... the "classics" (The Joshua Tree was barely 10 years young) sounded out of place amongst throwaways like 'If You Wear That Velvet Dress' and no guargantuan lemon could mask it...  'Wake Up Dead Man' is probably their worst album/concert closer ever...  the show I attended saw the stadium empty out before it even was over...  there's a reason why they've abandoned these songs...  yes, the diehards here sing 'Pop's praises but the casual U2 fans who rarely post don't give it the time of day...

the 'eXPERIENCE' tour saw better returns in Europe as well, but they were smart enough to change things up after poor reviews in Copenhagen...  again, no complaints about the stageshow, the disappointment was with the 'iNNOCENCE' material that was showcased during the first half of the show...  by tour's end all 'iNNOCENCE' songs were rightfully jettisoned in favour of material people actually came to hear...  the 'PopMart' set didn't vary much after opening night through to 1998...  atleast they knew to drop 'Miami' & 'If God Would Send His Angels' early on...

'PopMart' seemed a natural progression of the 'ZooTV' production that proceeded it...  Bigger TV (Biggest Ever at the time), flashy costumes (especially in juxtaposition to 'The Joshua Tree') while further cementing the 'B-Stage' concept as a new staple of their shows...  the music suffered from over-saturation and over-indulgence...  most got a good laugh out of the mockery of themselves with the elaborate visuals and it's probably the music's saving grace...  the clash of sounds found on the album make most want to turn it down instead of up, yes it's a "mess"...

1995's 'Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me' hors d'oeuvre is a prime example of an artist using way too much paint on the canvass to create a "mess"...  it was one of the highlights of the 'PopMart' set...  it was heavy as hell while the Bono 'BatSignal' got quite the reaction from the sparse crowd...  quite a contrast to the annoying screeching violins that litter the studio release...  you had a great song aided by immense marketing from the blockbuster comic franchise played by one of the most popular bands ever that failed to blow away the record buying public...  was promotion to blame there?...  the songs on the 'Pop' record received this same amateurish treatment and suffered as a result...  their laughable cover of The Beatles' classic 'Happiness Is A Warm Gun' from this period is an extreme example, yikes...  you mentioned the 'Best Of' and I believe that the live version of 'Gone' is the one that they opted for...  yes, the rocking version without that irratating siren sound muddying up the chorus, there's actually a great U2 song underneath all that somewhere...  I stand by the album shouldering all of the blame for 'PopMart's failures..:-)
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Vox on January 10, 2020, 10:44:13 AM
I agree with a lot of what Billy Rhythm says.  This is the first time in my life where I’d be “okay” if U2 never released another album.  For my taste, I’d put No Line on the Horizon in my upper third tier of U2 albums, but that’s just me.  I’ve held out hope that U2 could still release something artistically, commercially, and critically lauded, but I’m not so sure they have that in them, at this point.  Just my opinion.  All that being said, there isn’t a U2 album that I don’t like.   

Honestly, I’d be curious to see what the individual members of U2 did on their own.  I’ve always said I could see Bono having a career as a lounge crooner, i.e. “Two Shots of Happy, One Shot of Sad.”  I could envision The Edge coming up with an experimental, interesting album of sounds.  Heck, I could even see Adam and Larry come together and make interesting music – people tend to forget that the last time a component of U2 had a top 10 in the States were these two with “Mission Impossible.”   

All that being said, this band has given me so much, they can do whatever the hell they want.
Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 10, 2020, 12:39:22 PM
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I agree with a lot of what Billy Rhythm says.  This is the first time in my life where I’d be “okay” if U2 never released another album.  For my taste, I’d put No Line on the Horizon in my upper third tier of U2 albums, but that’s just me.  I’ve held out hope that U2 could still release something artistically, commercially, and critically lauded, but I’m not so sure they have that in them, at this point.  Just my opinion.  All that being said, there isn’t a U2 album that I don’t like.   

Honestly, I’d be curious to see what the individual members of U2 did on their own.  I’ve always said I could see Bono having a career as a lounge crooner, i.e. “Two Shots of Happy, One Shot of Sad.”  I could envision The Edge coming up with an experimental, interesting album of sounds.  Heck, I could even see Adam and Larry come together and make interesting music – people tend to forget that the last time a component of U2 had a top 10 in the States were these two with “Mission Impossible.”   

All that being said, this band has given me so much, they can do whatever the hell they want.
So what if they ARE capable of producing another artistic masterpiece?  Are you saying you’re so afraid of them missing the mark that you prefer they don’t even try???  What on God’s earth do you have to lose?  If they fail no one is going to make you listen to it.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Vox on January 11, 2020, 01:48:47 PM
Jayzus Tortuga - if you want to know what I’m saying, just read my post. Lol!
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: habib2343 on January 14, 2020, 03:15:27 PM
I think as the band approaches 60, I think we are hoping in vain for another artistic masterpiece  or shift like joshua tree or achtung baby. I expect the next U2 album (if there is one ) to be met with the tepid response of at least the last three. Bono will hype it as the best album  since music was first put to tape but it will be met with  a meh response from the wider public. U2 fans, such as ourselves,  will think its the best thing since slice bread, but it won't caputre the public imagination like JT and AB, generally accepted as their most accessible albums.

I don't expect them to engage in another marketing gimmick as with the release of Songs of Innocence. They will want continue to preserve the music juggernaut they have built over the last four decades-crusing down main street. That said it would be interesting to know the SOI and SOE official physical sales since their respective releases. I suspect this motivated the JT tour revival.

. I know the industry now counts downloads and streams  as the equivalent of one physical album sold but with the very nature of streams and downloads, those figures can easily be distorted and manipulated to be higher ( or lower) than they actually are.

Of course I could be wrong and they end up producing another standout album to sit proudly among the two peaks of their career- the joshua tree and achtung baby. But realistically the odds are stacked against them. I'm not being pessimistic but being realistic.  I expect the band to announce a AB30 retrospective tour of some sort..maybe not as big as JT30 but some acknowledgement in the next 12-18 months.   Another box set will follow  but this will be the most comprehensive of their career covering every b side and outakes from 1976 along with a re-release of the best of compilations they released.

now excuse me iim going to least to exit-acrobat-bullet the blue sky-until the end of the world medley before bed...
Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 14, 2020, 05:41:27 PM
I really enjoyed all the albums before JT and AB.  Except for NYD and a few tracks off UF I don’t think you could say any of those captured the interest of the wider public.  I don’t think expectations need to be set so high.  I would be happy with anything equal to their past catalog, with the exception of HTDAAB, SOI, and SOE.  Those are the only albums I really found disappointing.


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: habib2343 on January 24, 2020, 02:53:18 PM
We shouldn't overlook the commerical aspect of whatever is left of U2 as a going concern. If I was LiveNation, I would think it is unlikely at this stage that the returns of any new material will be minimal at best.-what were the official SOI and SOE sales figures - how many physical albums were sold worldwide - a few million at best ? i don't count the Apple downloads of SOI as that was forced on people who didnt willingly buy a new u2 album.

Thats way below U2 at their peak from late 80#s to early 00's. I would be thinking what could the band do that would line my company's coffers to the max ? The answer is of course an AB30 anniversary tour. They will leave enough time for people to miss them before launching another tour as we've just come to an end of five years of U2 live..they need a break and so do we. Don't leave it too late and I'm not too sure about the idea of Bono in leather pants in his 60's recalling The Fly, they have to pull it off convincingly, with dignity and without coming across as too despearate and immersed in nostalgia -something Bono rebelled against in his lyrics.

Still like the U2 sheep i am, i will lap up any compilation/tour/album come's our way before its all over...
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 24, 2020, 03:20:40 PM
I wish they would totally overlook the commercial aspect and create some good art. 


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: habib2343 on January 24, 2020, 03:31:27 PM
yes but they and their families have lifestyles to maintain which i think will override the pursuit of good experimental art. They did that in the mid 90's with the lacklustre reception to Passengers and Popmart . They pushed the boat out too far and have by and large played it safe over the last 20 years. If they could maintain their current lifestyles ( millions in the bank, homes all over the world etc ) and pursue their art, they would, but they are also business men as well as rockstars..

I hope im wrong--i enjoyed passengers, the millon dollar hotel soundtrack and the Pop era.  As much as they try to deny it, they are slowly but surely embracing nostalgia but they will go into the graveyard of rock kicking and screaming, rather then reluctance and acceptance, if only we could stay young and invincible forever...
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 24, 2020, 03:54:41 PM
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if only we could stay young and invincible forever...

The Beatles & Abba have...  because they knew when to call it a night...:-)
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 24, 2020, 07:31:11 PM
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yes but they and their families have lifestyles to maintain which i think will override the pursuit of good experimental art. They did that in the mid 90's with the lacklustre reception to Passengers and Popmart . They pushed the boat out too far and have by and large played it safe over the last 20 years. If they could maintain their current lifestyles ( millions in the bank, homes all over the world etc ) and pursue their art, they would, but they are also business men as well as rockstars..

I hope im wrong--i enjoyed passengers, the millon dollar hotel soundtrack and the Pop era.  As much as they try to deny it, they are slowly but surely embracing nostalgia but they will go into the graveyard of rock kicking and screaming, rather then reluctance and acceptance, if only we could stay young and invincible forever...

They have more than enough money to maintain their lifestyle’s. I don’t think that’s what they are worried about.  It’s the desire to remain relevant.
Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 24, 2020, 07:32:40 PM
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if only we could stay young and invincible forever...

The Beatles & Abba have...  because they knew when to call it a night...:-)
You mean they gave up and quit.  Quitting is their legacy.  This idea that you should quit if you can’t do as well as your best work is ridiculous.  U2 made a lot of great music before they peaked in late 80s/early 90s and they’ve made a lot of good music since then.


 I would argue that the Beatles never quit, they just went in different directions.


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 24, 2020, 08:36:59 PM
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if only we could stay young and invincible forever...

The Beatles & Abba have...  because they knew when to call it a night...:-)
You mean they gave up and quit.
No...  that's your own interpretation...  when people think of The Beatles they don't think of Paul McCartney vomitting out the chorus to 'Sgt. Pepper' in his 70's, or Ringo half-heartedly grinning onstage while someone else plays the drums in 2020...  they think of The Beatles, as they were and always will be...  Their Legacy is 4-Ever cemented...  their final album together is their most successful, commercially and artistically...:-)
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 24, 2020, 10:14:05 PM
Wow.  The 1.4 million people that watched him “vomit” up Sgt Peppers on his 2016-2017 tour at age 74 might disagree with you.  Did you even listen to Egypt Station to see what someone can create in their 70s?


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 25, 2020, 12:09:28 AM
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Did you even listen to Egypt Station to see what someone can create in their 70s?

yes...  and it's crap...  hard to believe that this is the same person who wrote classics like 'Eleanor Rigby'...  Paul lost his pension for writing decades ago, and even then his gems were few and far between...  if his name weren't Paul McCartney he would've faded after his second solo album and been relieved of his recording contract...  all of The Beatles' solo works show flashes of their former brilliance together but the quality of their recordings have steadily declined almost immediately since disbanding...  breaking up when they did was one of the best moves that they ever made...:-)
Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 25, 2020, 06:16:12 AM
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Did you even listen to Egypt Station to see what someone can create in their 70s?

yes...  and it's crap...  hard to believe that this is the same person who wrote classics like 'Eleanor Rigby'...  Paul lost his pension for writing decades ago, and even then his gems were few and far between...  if his name weren't Paul McCartney he would've faded after his second solo album and been relieved of his recording contract...  all of The Beatles' solo works show flashes of their former brilliance together but the quality of their recordings have steadily declined almost immediately since disbanding...  breaking up when they did was one of the best moves that they ever made...:-)

Of course you did, five times with an open mind, right?  Do you really expect that once an artist writes an Eleanor Rigby, that they can keep creating additional Eleanor Rigby after Eleanor Rigby?  And if they can’t they should just hang it up?  An artist writes potentially hundreds of songs over their career.  What are the odds their last one will be their best?  And why on earth would the people not want pretty good better than average music from someone just because they wrote some unbelievably good stuff on their prior album?

Glad artists don’t listen to you because I enjoyed Egypt Station thoroughly.  So did lots of other people.

Most critics would disagree with you that its crap.

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic74/100[13]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic3.5/5 stars[14]
The Guardian4/5 stars[15]
NME4/5 stars[16]
The Observer4/5 stars[17]
Pitchfork5.8/10[18]
Rolling Stone4/5 stars[19]
Slant Magazine2.5/5 stars[20]



Egypt Station has been well received by music critics. On Metacritic, the album has an overall score of 74 out of 100 compiled from the scores of 25 music critics, indicating "generally favourable reviews".[13]

In the review for AllMusic, Stephen Thomas Erlewine opined that "all the slower songs are peppered with haunting images of darkness creeping at the edges, while McCartney revives the carnality that marked 'Press' – not just on the straightforward 'Fuh You,' but 'Come on to Me,' a considerably better song than the Tedder exercise. Such twists are welcome, but what's satisfying about Egypt Station is what's always satisfying about a McCartney record: the hooks and imagination that are so rampant they seem effortless."[14] Dan Stubbs from NME gave the album 4 out of 5 stars, saying, "McCartney’s always been about inclusivity and openness, but this latest glimpse into his life feels like a particularly enlightening one."[16] Reviewing the album for The Observer, Kitty Empire also gave the album 4 out of 5 stars. In the review she states that "the finest songs here land immediately and hum with urgency."[17]

Writing a four-star review in Rolling Stone, Rob Sheffield claimed, "Make a list of all the songwriters who were composing great tunes in 1958. Now make an overlapping list of the ones who are still writing brilliant songs in 2018. Your list reads: Paul McCartney."[19] Chris Willman at Variety stated, "If it doesn't make for McCartney's most coherent collection, it's endearing how enthusiastically he strives, at 76, to avoid doing just one thing when he can do a dozen. b****, he's Macca."[21]

ClassicRockHistory wrote in their review of the album, "This is great songwriting; it’s pop perfection. If we were living in the era in which radio used to play music other than hip hop and rap, these new Paul McCartney songs would become staples of pop culture like so many of the Beatles classics did. However, times have changed and so sadly these great records can get lost."[22]

In 2019, Egypt Station was nominated for the Fryderyk Music Award for the best foreign album of 2018, but did not win, losing the award to Anthem of the Peaceful Army by Greta Van Fleet.[23]
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Billy Rhythm on January 25, 2020, 11:59:07 AM
you obviously put more stock into what the critics say than I do, but at the end of the day their opinions don't mean anymore than yours or mine...  doesn't change the sound comin' outta the speakers for my ears...  getting back to U2 now, yes they should seriously consider retiring and ending on a higher note, in my opinion...  never heard of "the Fryderyk Music Award" (which he didn't even win?!) before, but then again I pay about as much attention to Awards Shows as I do Reviews...  I make my own opinions...:-)
Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 25, 2020, 04:39:11 PM
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you obviously put more stock into what the critics say than I do, but at the end of the day their opinions don't mean anymore than yours or mine...  doesn't change the sound comin' outta the speakers for my ears...  getting back to U2 now, yes they should seriously consider retiring and ending on a higher note, in my opinion...  never heard of "the Fryderyk Music Award" (which he didn't even win?!) before, but then again I pay about as much attention to Awards Shows as I do Reviews...  I make my own opinions...:-)

Again you miss my point.  As long as there are people enjoying U2’s or Paul McCartney’s music why should they quit?  It shouldn’t bother you if they make music other people like just because you don’t like it.

I came back to edit my own post.  An artist should keep making music as long as THEY enjoy it, whether anyone else does or not.  True artists create because its in their soul, not for some ego trip of being a legend.

Instead of romanticizing someone going out on top like James Dean, I’d rather aspire to be the person who keeps on going as long as they feel the desire.  Rock N’ Roll is not about beauty and perfection.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Boba Fett on January 27, 2020, 08:23:03 PM
They have never done this.

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I wish they would totally overlook the commercial aspect and create some good art. 


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Title: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 28, 2020, 12:02:18 AM
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They have never done this.

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I wish they would totally overlook the commercial aspect and create some good art. 


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They did it all the way from Boy to Pop.

Now, like some others, they are too worried about their legacy and they have defined a successful legacy as huge commercial success.  And they have decided that commercial success comes from trying to sound like the mainstream, which ironically is the opposite of what made them commercially successful in the first place.


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Boba Fett on January 28, 2020, 02:10:02 PM
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They have never done this.

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I wish they would totally overlook the commercial aspect and create some good art. 


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They did it all the way from Boy to Pop.

Now, like some others, they are too worried about their legacy and they have defined a successful legacy as huge commercial success.  And they have decided that commercial success comes from trying to sound like the mainstream, which ironically is the opposite of what made them commercially successful in the first place.


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Nope. Pretty much everything they did, right from the start, was done with the aim of selling as many albums as possible and as many concert tickets as possible. Along the way they managed to create some great art. But to pretend it was all about the art at ANY point in their career is just silly. And just to be clear, I don't have the slightest problem with that approach. I personally think they succeeded on both aims - and congratulations to them for doing so!
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on January 28, 2020, 03:42:18 PM
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They have never done this.

You are not allowed to view links. Register or Login
I wish they would totally overlook the commercial aspect and create some good art. 


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They did it all the way from Boy to Pop.

Now, like some others, they are too worried about their legacy and they have defined a successful legacy as huge commercial success.  And they have decided that commercial success comes from trying to sound like the mainstream, which ironically is the opposite of what made them commercially successful in the first place.


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Nope. Pretty much everything they did, right from the start, was done with the aim of selling as many albums as possible and as many concert tickets as possible. Along the way they managed to create some great art. But to pretend it was all about the art at ANY point in their career is just silly. And just to be clear, I don't have the slightest problem with that approach. I personally think they succeeded on both aims - and congratulations to them for doing so!

I think in the early years they were conscious of it and were making compromises but they often sacrificed commercial viability for vision.  If not you never would have had an album like UF or Pop. 


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Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: truthsfate on January 31, 2020, 08:31:58 PM
To me it's more a matter of what I would call the artists' prerogative. The whole notion of a pre-determined legacy is a bit pretentious. Any artist in any medium may have a time when their work resonates with a general audience whether it be at the beginning, middle, or end of their career.

An artist creates for the sake of the art, no matter if it's for commercial or personal satisfaction. There is no debt owed, nor is there any obligation.

It's a gift to us if an artist creates something that resonates and holds meaning..

It's definitely human nature to attach our own fears and desires upon others. It's ok to feel something and have an opinion. But to expect something is dangerous.

U2 should do whatever it is they desire to do, or not to do. It's us, the fans, the critics, who ultimately determine a how their legacy will evolve, only by how we remember them, and how we pass it along to future generations.

I personally hope U2 continues to create new art, whether it be music, or tours, or both.   

       
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on February 01, 2020, 01:11:33 PM
I’m with you truthsfate.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: laoghaire on February 01, 2020, 05:17:15 PM
Speaking for myself, if U2 want to make another album, I would like for them to do it.

I don't want to be disappointed. True, a crappy album does not erase great work. Still, I don't want to feel disappointed in them.

They disappointed me once, with Bomb. But I am very happy with what followed. No, not every song, but I am wowed by several songs from each album. Yes, wowed. My life is better for having them. I feel sure they can make more.

I got a kick out of Egypt Station. I think the world is better for having that album than not. It's not Sgt Pepper but it's enjoyable. He makes music that makes people smile, that's our Paul.
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Tortuga on February 01, 2020, 05:52:38 PM
McCartney was better with Lennon but the world is better with his solo work than without it.  I love my Wings albums.  They are good fun pop music.  You would think the world might have had enough of that kind of music but there is never too much.  And what’s wrong with that?
Title: Re: U2 2020-2030
Post by: Luzita on February 02, 2020, 03:43:26 PM
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To me it's more a matter of what I would call the artists' prerogative. The whole notion of a pre-determined legacy is a bit pretentious. Any artist in any medium may have a time when their work resonates with a general audience whether it be at the beginning, middle, or end of their career.

An artist creates for the sake of the art, no matter if it's for commercial or personal satisfaction. There is no debt owed, nor is there any obligation.

It's a gift to us if an artist creates something that resonates and holds meaning..

It's definitely human nature to attach our own fears and desires upon others. It's ok to feel something and have an opinion. But to expect something is dangerous.

U2 should do whatever it is they desire to do, or not to do. It's us, the fans, the critics, who ultimately determine a how their legacy will evolve, only by how we remember them, and how we pass it along to future generations.

I personally hope U2 continues to create new art, whether it be music, or tours, or both.   

       
Absolutely agree


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