1987 Edge interview on U2 as prophetic - U2 Feedback

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Old 04-06-2002, 09:16 AM   #1
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1987 Edge interview on U2 as prophetic

I had never seen this before and find it extraordinary! It's translated from a French magazine.

Libération, 04.07.1987

THE EDGE : It’s true that I have faith, but it is confused. I don’t generally talk about it, because actually I’m incapable of describing it. It’s beyond description. Like many creators, I am conscious of God.

LIBERATION : Your concert at its high point seemed just like a Mass. This communion between your group and the public evokes liturgy. Is it a “religion without God” which you are preaching?

THE EDGE : I can’t conceive of a religion without God, any more than we are preachers. I don’t claim to have reflected profoundly on this question, but I have the sense that the message is not ours. We only pass it on. It’s a spark, I think, in the music. The words do express our thoughts, but what creates that communion in between the group and the public is the communicative power of our music. Beyond the barriers of language. Sometimes I witness a greater comprehension of our songs in countries where people don’t speak English.

LIBERATION : Maybe this power can be used for good...

THE EDGE : I hadn’t seen that before. We do, certainly, have a responsibility. Bono’s beginning to get up on stage to take on Reagan or Thatcher directly. There are moments where he has to hold himself back not to tear into American evangelists, for example.

LIBERATION : Jim Baker and his wife?

THE EDGE : Yes: they need to be corrected! But that’s not our role. I don’t see our responsibility as a religion but more – and I know this will sound rather pompous – like prophecy. To prepare the soil. Not to tell people how to live their lives but to say to them “think about it!” Not to tell them “Give your life to Jesus Christ,” but only “think about it!” To help them – and I say this without arrogance – to help them to think. We don’t have all the answers, but this life isn’t a closed book. That’s what our music is about. Bono believes that too – “there’s this thing, there, we don’t know what it is, but we’re going to try to find out.” Religion is dogmatic and fundamental. U2 is neither. U2 is just as lost, just as ravenous for spirituality as anyone. That’s why so many people have become attached to us. We don’t find our absolution in rock ‘n’ roll. Maybe rock got us known by half the world, but it isn’t our God.
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Old 04-06-2002, 11:08 AM   #2
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That's n awesome interview. I hadn't really thought of U2 as prophetic, but now I see that they are, in a sense.

I've always felt that Steve Taylor and Gary Cherone (of Extreme and Van Halen) are prophets.
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Old 04-06-2002, 11:30 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by mebythesea:
U2 is just as lost, just as ravenous for spirituality as anyone. That’s why so many people have become attached to us.
very good article
I always felt U2 lyrics resemble 'a friend' more than that they resemble 'a teacher'



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Old 04-06-2002, 12:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
originally posted by mebythesea:
I don’t see our responsibility as a religion but more – and I know this will sound rather pompous – like prophecy. To prepare the soil. Not to tell people how to live their lives but to say to them “think about it!”
Edge said something like that when they were in Rio, in November 2000, I have his interview in video. He was asked if their attitudes were meant to influence someone´s behaviour whether was about religion or political options...he said that their goal was to make people start thinking, rather than following them blindly... that life was a neverending search for its own meaning...something like that.

Thanks for posting the article

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Old 04-06-2002, 02:17 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by mebythesea:
but I have the sense that the message is not ours. We only pass it on. It’s a spark, I think, in the music.
That is partly the truth. It's the raised sevenths and the triplets and the 'positive' keys which they use at the climaxes of songs like ISHFWILF that make you feel uplifted without being told it. (musical rant, sorry)

What he said about U2's music being a push to think not an order is quite accurate as well. They don't tell you what to think at all, they just present what they think and sort of nudge you while whispering in your ear 'it's a rough yet fulfilling journey.' I love it!

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Old 04-07-2002, 04:11 AM   #6
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mebythesea--
Me too! I find it extraordinary, to hear Edge speak so bluntly about the Spirit in their shows. I don't doubt that they all discuss it amongst themselves, and God knows Bono has searched it deeply in his interviews, but man! it excites me to hear Edge dig in like that...
Thanks for sharing it here.

Deb D

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