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Old 09-13-2017, 03:16 PM   #1
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Why is your favourite U2 song your favourite?

Mine is Streets. I first heard it on the Best of 1980-1990, and I remember one day I was surprised to find the song made me really happy... Lots of the other songs seemed angsty, or sad, or angry. The song still lifts my mood every time I hear it.

What song is your favourite and why?
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Old 09-13-2017, 03:43 PM   #2
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Stay (Faraway, So Close!)

It came to me at a time where I really didn't care about U2 much anymore. I was in college, didn't care for NLOTH (the most recent release at the time), so I didn't really keep up with what was going on. Previously I had really only listened to JT, AB, and everything post ATYCLB.

I was feeling pretty shitty one day, and decided to go on a run. I did a generic rock station on Pandora, and went on my way. All of a sudden the clouds started rolling in faster and it started raining. Stay came on, and it was just a euphoric moment for me. And I was soaked to the bone. I could see beyond colors. I felt every emotion at once. It was that transcendent to me.
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Old 09-13-2017, 04:03 PM   #3
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Stay is a Top 10 U2 song for me - transcendent is the perfect way to describe it.

Streets - The first time I heard this song was while watching Elevation Boston. I was an extremely casual fan at the time, and stole my dad's DVD just to see why they were one of his favorite bands. There's just something otherworldly about that song...the way it builds up just gives me goosebumps every single time. I also discovered it at a time when I was starting to listen to different genres of music, and was looking for something that I could stick with for a long time - this song was the one that drove me straight to rock territory. It didn't make me the hardcore U2 fan that I am today (that was Ultraviolet) - but it was definitely a step in the right direction.
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Old 09-13-2017, 04:19 PM   #4
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Stay is a very good song. I used to consider it my favourite, it was really important to me at one time. I love the guitar in the chorus.

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It didn't make me the hardcore U2 fan that I am today (that was Ultraviolet) - but it was definitely a step in the right direction.
Ultraviolet... Transcendent, again. For some reason, the part that really gets to me is the repeating synth/string bit in the verses.
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Old 09-14-2017, 02:33 AM   #5
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Streets - The first time I heard this song was while watching Elevation Boston. I was an extremely casual fan at the time, and stole my dad's DVD just to see why they were one of his favorite bands. There's just something otherworldly about that song...the way it builds up just gives me goosebumps every single time. I also discovered it at a time when I was starting to listen to different genres of music, and was looking for something that I could stick with for a long time - this song was the one that drove me straight to rock territory. It didn't make me the hardcore U2 fan that I am today (that was Ultraviolet) - but it was definitely a step in the right direction.
The Boston DVD holds a very special place in my heart.
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Old 09-14-2017, 06:08 AM   #6
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My favorite always will be The Unforgettable Fire.

I love the mood, the instrumentation, and I think the lyrics are fantastic. I don't know why Bono doesn't write lyrics like this anymore. Edge's tone is sublime. I love that there's a small barely noticable mistake in the beginning left in the recording - Larry's count in with sticks and him promptly saying ('oh s--t").

In terms of live, it's not an easy one for them but there are two great versions out there (Paris 1987 and Rose Bowl 2009) and one in which Bono just can't hit the notes (R&H Outtake - Tempe AZ I think). The Paris JT Tour version has a ton of energy. I love the way he introduces the song. I feel like this Bono is light years away from what he is now.

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Old 09-14-2017, 10:19 AM   #7
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Mine is Streets. I first heard it on the Best of 1980-1990, and I remember one day I was surprised to find the song made me really happy... Lots of the other songs seemed angsty, or sad, or angry. The song still lifts my mood every time I hear it.

What song is your favourite and why?
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Stay is a Top 10 U2 song for me - transcendent is the perfect way to describe it.

Streets - The first time I heard this song was while watching Elevation Boston. I was an extremely casual fan at the time, and stole my dad's DVD just to see why they were one of his favorite bands. There's just something otherworldly about that song...the way it builds up just gives me goosebumps every single time. I also discovered it at a time when I was starting to listen to different genres of music, and was looking for something that I could stick with for a long time - this song was the one that drove me straight to rock territory. It didn't make me the hardcore U2 fan that I am today (that was Ultraviolet) - but it was definitely a step in the right direction.
I get you both on Streets.

U2 are perhaps the only music act to which I come close to having a religious experience with and Streets along with many more of their songs provides that to me. Similar to prbiker the moment Streets really got to me was when I bought the Zoo TV Live From Sydney dvd. That transition from Running to Stand Still was as unexpected as it was beautiful and made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

It's amazing for a band so well known for their communal experiences in a live setting, songs sung and shared amongst thousands, that they can provide the same satisfaction, if not more, for those looking for liberated isolation and seclusion - in fact that's where their real power lies. They have songs that appeal to the bleak along with songs that realise the beaming elements of life but this is the one song that actively moves you from the darker side of your soul to the brighter side. I love it's power to take you far away from any travails or worries in your present situation to a place, either imagined or real, that makes you feel better, more alive and optimistic for life. It is pure and glorious escapism.

Where The Streets Have No Name. Good call!


Btw - first post on here. Read this forum countless times over the years and thought it would be good to share my two cents.
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Old 09-14-2017, 11:07 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by prbiker15 View Post
Stay is a Top 10 U2 song for me - transcendent is the perfect way to describe it.

Streets - The first time I heard this song was while watching Elevation Boston. I was an extremely casual fan at the time, and stole my dad's DVD just to see why they were one of his favorite bands. There's just something otherworldly about that song...the way it builds up just gives me goosebumps every single time. I also discovered it at a time when I was starting to listen to different genres of music, and was looking for something that I could stick with for a long time - this song was the one that drove me straight to rock territory. It didn't make me the hardcore U2 fan that I am today (that was Ultraviolet) - but it was definitely a step in the right direction.


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Originally Posted by bono_man2002 View Post
The Boston DVD holds a very special place in my heart.


I wouldn't be a fan without the Boston DVD. I watched it when I was 6 and I've been a fan ever since. Streets in particular is the song that did it for me. That long intro and then the moment when every light in the arena lights up it's just surreal and amazing. My favorite song is still Stay, but I think it's tied with Streets
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Old 09-14-2017, 12:43 PM   #9
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My favorite always will be The Unforgettable Fire.

I love the mood, the instrumentation, and I think the lyrics are fantastic. I don't know why Bono doesn't write lyrics like this anymore. Edge's tone is sublime. I love that there's a small barely noticable mistake in the beginning left in the recording - Larry's count in with sticks and him promptly saying ('oh s--t").

I've NEVER noticed Larry saying shit. That's hilarious.

I love this song too. It's always my go-to example of sublime Bono lyrics.
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Old 09-15-2017, 01:06 AM   #10
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For me it's Bad.

This was the song that truly captivated me when I first watched the Rattle & Hum film back in the mid-2000's as I was just getting into the band. I kept going back to this song as I'd never heard anything like it (and was so disappointed that it wasn't on the R&H CD!). The album version from Unforgettable Fire to me is U2 at their atmospheric and ethereal best (and the centerpiece of the album), with the imagery that Bono's haunting singing evokes accompanyed by what is to me the finest example of Edge's textural guitar work. It's so simple if you know what he's actually playing, yet the end result is so brilliantly effective. The sound is hypnotic and practically puts me in a trance every time I hear it. I love how the song progressively builds up with Larry's drumming, and in the live versions it finally reaches its high point and full potential. That riff that Edge plays during this part (not on the original studio recording) could go on forever and I'd still listen. The raw power and emotion that Bono sang Bad with during the 80's is just so incredible and epic, the way he belted out the 'Wide Awake' parts, not to mention some of the best snippets he's done have been featured in this song. Every performance of it has little nuances that make each one different. To me it's up there with Streets as the quintessential U2 song and it really deserves to be played at every show.

Bad is truly the one U2 song I've always been kinda borderline obsessed with, having listened to endless live recordings of it, and I still have yet to experience the song in the flesh! I'm hoping that changes when I see them in San Diego next week.
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Old 09-15-2017, 08:03 AM   #11
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For me it's Bad.

This was the song that truly captivated me when I first watched the Rattle & Hum film back in the mid-2000's as I was just getting into the band. I kept going back to this song as I'd never heard anything like it (and was so disappointed that it wasn't on the R&H CD!). The album version from Unforgettable Fire to me is U2 at their atmospheric and ethereal best (and the centerpiece of the album), with the imagery that Bono's haunting singing evokes accompanyed by what is to me the finest example of Edge's textural guitar work. It's so simple if you know what he's actually playing, yet the end result is so brilliantly effective. The sound is hypnotic and practically puts me in a trance every time I hear it. I love how the song progressively builds up with Larry's drumming, and in the live versions it finally reaches its high point and full potential. That riff that Edge plays during this part (not on the original studio recording) could go on forever and I'd still listen. The raw power and emotion that Bono sang Bad with during the 80's is just so incredible and epic, the way he belted out the 'Wide Awake' parts, not to mention some of the best snippets he's done have been featured in this song. Every performance of it has little nuances that make each one different. To me it's up there with Streets as the quintessential U2 song and it really deserves to be played at every show.

Bad is truly the one U2 song I've always been kinda borderline obsessed with, having listened to endless live recordings of it, and I still have yet to experience the song in the flesh! I'm hoping that changes when I see them in San Diego next week.

It's hard to say which version I like best - record or live? Both stand out on their own qualities unique to themselves. As you say on record it's one of their most ethereal efforts but live it has that raw power that only U2 could pull off.

Also along with Pride it seems to be the only track that gets a frequent outing but I do wonder, without it's passage into live folklore thanks to Live Aid, whether it would have been performed as much. I suspect it would have been another A Sort of Homecoming ie criminally overlooked by the band!
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Old 09-15-2017, 08:57 AM   #12
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All of you in this thread have amazing taste. Stay, Ultra Violet, The Unforgettable Fire... I mean you guys are mentionong what is in my opinion some of their best work. The traditional U2 classics are awesome, but it's nice to see some of my favorites getting some love.

For me, it's a hard choice. There are a many candidates: the ones I mentioned earlier, If God Will Send His Angels, Red Hill Mining Town, and several others. But I'm going to go with Stay. The song is just perfect to me. Everytime I listen to it I just enjoy the whole experience. It has some of my favorite U2 lyrics and probably my favorite ending to a song.
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:53 AM   #13
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Where the Streets Have No Name has for a very long time been my favourite song of all time, and it always will be, but it's kind of like a #0 favourite. Like, there's Streets, and then the list starts.

So for me it's Running to Stand Still. I still remember the exact circumstances of when I listened to The Joshua Tree for the first time - it was the afternoon of my dad's 50th. I'd heard the first three tracks a ton of times before, so after loving Bullet, Running to Stand Still was the first time I had a really visceral reaction to a track on the album.

I could spend 10,000 words talking about it.

The acoustic guitar at the start foretells your heart ripping four minutes later. That soft, contemplative piano and Edge's chipped guitar. Bono's vocals; when they came from nowhere else but the depths of his heart, not from endless focus group workshopping or with a goal to hit the top of the charts in mind.

Ha la la la de day.........

The story is a fucking tragedy, through and through. I'll never do heroin, and this song, like Bad, is of course about how society created a monster scourge. But maybe my absolute favourite thing about Running to Stand Still is that it is completely neutral. This is a place of non-judgement. And the outro captures that perfectly: Running to Stand Still is U2 painting a very unflattering picture of drug abuse in Dublin. But it doesn't demean those who fell under its spell.

Bono summed it up perfectly: "If you can't change the world you're living in, seeing through different eyes is the only alternative. And heroin gives you heroin eyes to see the world with."

That's the Bono and U2 that I love. Empathy. Heroin is awful, but, if it's the only way you can be happy, then fuck it, go for it. And that's how I've felt with a lot of my anxiety and my coping mechanisms as well.

I can barely get through the song without breaking down. To see it live earlier this year, when I pretty much flew from Melbourne to LA solely for this one song, was beyond words.

Now Bono's harmonica, the piano, take me away......
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Old 09-17-2017, 07:59 AM   #14
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Where the Streets Have No Name has for a very long time been my favourite song of all time, and it always will be, but it's kind of like a #0 favourite. Like, there's Streets, and then the list starts.

So for me it's Running to Stand Still. I still remember the exact circumstances of when I listened to The Joshua Tree for the first time - it was the afternoon of my dad's 50th. I'd heard the first three tracks a ton of times before, so after loving Bullet, Running to Stand Still was the first time I had a really visceral reaction to a track on the album.

I could spend 10,000 words talking about it.

The acoustic guitar at the start foretells your heart ripping four minutes later. That soft, contemplative piano and Edge's chipped guitar. Bono's vocals; when they came from nowhere else but the depths of his heart, not from endless focus group workshopping or with a goal to hit the top of the charts in mind.

Ha la la la de day.........

The story is a fucking tragedy, through and through. I'll never do heroin, and this song, like Bad, is of course about how society created a monster scourge. But maybe my absolute favourite thing about Running to Stand Still is that it is completely neutral. This is a place of non-judgement. And the outro captures that perfectly: Running to Stand Still is U2 painting a very unflattering picture of drug abuse in Dublin. But it doesn't demean those who fell under its spell.

Bono summed it up perfectly: "If you can't change the world you're living in, seeing through different eyes is the only alternative. And heroin gives you heroin eyes to see the world with."

That's the Bono and U2 that I love. Empathy. Heroin is awful, but, if it's the only way you can be happy, then fuck it, go for it. And that's how I've felt with a lot of my anxiety and my coping mechanisms as well.

I can barely get through the song without breaking down. To see it live earlier this year, when I pretty much flew from Melbourne to LA solely for this one song, was beyond words.

Now Bono's harmonica, the piano, take me away......
I always enjoy reading passionate responses like yours. I already liked that song a lot, but your post will likely make me appreciate it even more now.
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Old 09-17-2017, 08:11 AM   #15
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Thanks, friend

I deeply appreciate the responses to my responses, if that makes sense.

And you should visit the video game thread, because clearly we're in sync video-game wise.
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Old 09-17-2017, 09:16 AM   #16
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For me, it's Lemon. I've never been one to see U2 as particularly experimental, but on Lemon they hit the sweet spot of traditional song structure and forward-looking atmosphere. What really makes it work is the contrast of the icy instrumentation and the emotional subject matter. I appreciate that Bono keeps the lyrics abstract enough to allow for some interpretative room, letting the delivery rather than the words make the case for the personal resonance. Pretty effortless how he shifts between the falsetto and normal register, and the interaction later in the song between Bono's fills and the mechanical backing vocals from Edge and co. Basically this song is a masterclass in contrasts.
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Old 09-17-2017, 09:46 AM   #17
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Thanks, friend

I deeply appreciate the responses to my responses, if that makes sense.

And you should visit the video game thread, because clearly we're in sync video-game wise.
Your welcome! And thanks for the suggestion, I'll check it out! 👍
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Old 09-19-2017, 01:55 AM   #18
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Streets. It's the 'left field' of it - no one else was putting out music like that. It's the tone of that guitar, the way he's scraping his pick up the strings. It's the perfect use of delay, the switch from 6/8 to 4/4.
It's also just an awesome song. And unlike most U2 songs, I'm not sure I've ever come across any negativity re Streets. It's universally respected, if not adored.
I got my first U2 tape (I'm that old) Christmas morning 1987. I'd been begging and begging for it. I got a crusty old second hand tape player too.
Unwrapped them, jumped and shouted with joy, and put it on - side 1 track 1. That intro, the build up, while the rest of the family begrudgingly accepted my music taste was good, takes me back to that morning every time. I was 8 and in awe of the power of music. I'm still 8 and in awe when that song comes on.
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Old 09-20-2017, 08:59 AM   #19
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Streets - The first time I heard this song was while watching Elevation Boston. I was an extremely casual fan at the time, and stole my dad's DVD just to see why they were one of his favorite bands.
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The Boston DVD holds a very special place in my heart.
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I wouldn't be a fan without the Boston DVD. I watched it when I was 6 and I've been a fan ever since.
I had the exact same experience. I borrowed the Boston DVD from my brother and watching it was the turning point for me, where I went from casual fan to superfan. That Bad->40->Streets segue has to be the most powerful live moment they've ever conjured up.
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Old 09-20-2017, 09:16 AM   #20
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RTSS - Streets

(infinitely sized gap)

Please - Streets
AIWIY - Streets
Bad - Streets
Zooropa - Streets

Then the rest.
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