Pop, Pop, Pop Music

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Q Magazine, March 1997


Pop, Pop, Pop Music

U2's New Album, Track by Track

DISCOTHEQUE The first single, complete with "boom"-enriched outro and accompanying video featuring soon-to-be-legendary appearance of U2 as the Village People. Bono: "When we were recording that, we had the whole studio in mirrorballs and disco lights."

DO YOU FEEL LOVED Heavy groove-based rocker in the tradition of "Even Better Than The Real Thing." Very likely single. Wry personal reference suspected in the opening lines:"Take these hands they're good for nothing/You know these hands never worked a day."

MOFO Sonic assault as U2 are possessed by the twin spirits of Underworld and The Prodigy, with Bono at his most cathartic. Breakneck double-tracked drumming quite likely the highlight of Larry Mullen's recorded career.

IF GOD WILL SEND HIS ANGELS Slow-winding ballad constructed around a title that existed during Zooropa sessions. Bono: "It's this guy beating up his girlfriend about her searching for answers and just telling her to look around. It's like science fiction gospel. Edge is calling it country hip-hop."

STARING AT THE SUN Infectious, sky-scraping pop song with echoes of Ray Davies and Bowie's Soul Love. Notable alone for middle eight couplet, "referee won't blow the whistle/God is good but will he listen?" Dead-cert summer number one.

LAST NIGHT ON EARTH U2 play Oasis at their own game. Steaming rocker with powerful Beatle-y chorus. The last track to be finished, with vocals recorded at 7am on the day of the album cut. Bono: "It felt like the last night on earth, alright."

GONE Soaring uplifter oddly reminiscent of The Verve, replete with darkly spiritual lyric. Likely to be emotional highpoint of candlelight vigil if U2's plane ever goes down. Edge: "There's many layers to that song and there's another level to it which I haven't figured yet."

MIAMI The strangest track of all. Electro experimental before Mullen kicks in with weighty John Bonham-styled groove. Lyrical snapshots of a band trip to Florida in spring '96. Edge: "It's sort of creative tourism."

THE PLAYBOY MANSION Touching tale of lottery playing average Joe fantasising about gaining entry to Hugh Hefner's private Disneyland, set to '60's flavoured trip-hop. Return to knowingly delivered truisms in verses, including the maybe libellous, "If coke is a mystery/Michael Jackson.....History."

IF YOU WEAR THAT VELVET DRESS Muted and frankly, horny ballad with echoes of Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game." Something for the weekend. Edge: "That was a song that basically came out of improvisation with Nellee Hooper."

PLEASE Shuffly meandering and moody bid-pacer. Edge: "One of the most intricate pieces of music we've ever written."

WAKE UP DEAD MAN Spaghetti-western atmosphere bristling with distant radio voices. A distorted Bono voices his frustration to Jesus "I'm alone in this world/And a f*cked up world it is too."

Copyright © 1997 Q Magazine. All rights reserved.

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on March 1, 1997 4:28 AM.

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