Achtung Baby and Zooropa as Natural Progrssions From Lovetown - U2 Feedback

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Old 08-26-2008, 02:14 PM   #1
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Achtung Baby and Zooropa as Natural Progrssions From Lovetown

Now, I fully understand if most of you are ready to draw and quarter me after I post this. But what if U2 hadn't decided to go and completely dream it up again? What if they had just taken the sound of Lovetown and pushed it one step toward where Achtung Baby went, and not gone the whole way? What if Achtung Baby was a natural seque from Lovetown with bits of electronic added in, instead of something completely different? And then if Zooropa was the natural progression from that alternate Achtung Baby?

Here's how I see how it could have worked:

Lovetown'd version of Achtung Baby:
(all guitars sounding like Lovetown guitars, tonewise, and without any modulation--delay, reverb and tremelo, however, are used extensively on the guitars)

01. Zoo Station (with a big organ intro and with a solid All Along The Watchtower-esque beat)
02. The Fly (with less "dancy" drums, but more "pounding-away" drums)*
03. Until The End Of The World (with God Part II-esque drums)*
04. She's Gonna Blow Your House Down (a much refined version from Salome tapes)
05. Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses? (close to the Temple Bar version)
06. Mysterious Ways (with a Desire vibe to it)*
07. She's A Mystery Girl (with a Dancing Barefoot vibe to it)
08. Wild Irish Rose (a somewhat refined version of what we've heard)
09. One (with a much more grand, important, urgent With Or Without You sense to it)*
10. Ultraviolet (with better lyrics and Where The Streets Have No Name drums)
11. Acrobat (just as it is, but with better production)
12. Love Is Blindness (with a better outro)

*singles
all with a bit more poetic/Lovetown'd lyrics.
This would be my favourite U2 album.

In a natural progression world pt. 2: ZOOROPA
(all guitars sounding like Lovetown guitars, tonewise, and with no modulation--only the "sparkly" pitch shift sound as used in HMTMKMKM, and on songs like Slug and When I Look At The World's solo)

01. Zooropa (not quite so muddled, still just as ethereal)
02. Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me (exactly as it is)*
03. Some Days Are Better Than Others (with all real drums which are both creative and solid and without the random digital shit going on in the background, but with a layer of All I Want Is You-esque keyboards, and a layer of Always Forever Now-esque keyboards--oh and better lyrics)
04. The First Time (exactly as it is except for better quality production--very Running To Stand Still)
05. Stay (like With Or Without You and One--with a much more grand, important, urgent sense to it)*
06. Where Did It All Go Wrong? (a refined, Lovetown'd version of what we have)
07. Even Better Than The Real Thing (straight up ballsy rock with another All Along The Watchtower beat)*
08. Numb (with both electronic drums and real drums, the real drums played furiously like in Race Against Time)
09. Lemon (sung in full voice, not falsetto, and with guitar added, both rhythm and lead)*
10. Dirty Day (exactly like how it was done on ZooTV)
11. Slow Dancing (darker than the two versions we've heard--a sinister bit of Exit involved)
12. The Wanderer (the darkest song yet done by U2, musically more similar to Mothers Of The Disappeared and Love Is Blindness)

*singles
This would probably be in my top 4 U2 albums.
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Old 08-26-2008, 02:21 PM   #2
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Now, I fully understand if most of you are ready to draw and quarter me after I post this.
You're much brighter than your tastes indicate.

Quote:
But what if U2 hadn't decided to go and completely dream it up again?
U2 probably wouldn't be here anymore, and McGuinne$$ would have released a specially-made U2 jukebox to make up for the lack of new albums.

Quote:
What if they had just taken the sound of Lovetown and pushed it one step toward where Achtung Baby went, and not gone the whole way?
I'm not much for compromise, so the idea seems rather blah to me.

Quote:
What if Achtung Baby was a natural seque from Lovetown with bits of electronic added in, instead of something completely different?
Compared to real electronica, that's precisely what Achtung Baby already is.

Quote:
all with a bit more poetic/Lovetown'd lyrics
What are Lovetown'd lyrics?
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Old 08-26-2008, 03:11 PM   #3
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The thing is I already feel that Achtung Baby was a natural progression for the band and Zooropa a natural progression from that.
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Old 08-26-2008, 03:17 PM   #4
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What if Bono was born a woman? Would Boy have been named Girl? The first two albums probably would have sounded the same...

Would she have written "I Kissed a Girl" decades before Katy Perry?
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Old 08-26-2008, 03:18 PM   #5
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What if interference had never existed?

Would this thread have been created?
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:31 PM   #6
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I personally think that Achtung was a very natural progression from the Lovetown era already.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:31 PM   #7
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The thing is I already feel that Achtung Baby was a natural progression for the band and Zooropa a natural progression from that.
Zooropa is a natural progression from Achtung Baby, yes. But you really think Achtung Baby is the natural progression from The Joshua Tree/Rattle & Hum? You do know The Fly is the sound that cut down the Joshua Tree, right?

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I personally think that Achtung was a very natural progression from the Lovetown era already.
I could see it being a semi-natural progression from God Part II, but that's all.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:33 PM   #8
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What are Lovetown'd lyrics?
Lyrics which come from a less direct, more poetic Bono.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:42 PM   #9
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Lyrics which come from a less direct, more poetic Bono.
If I wanted cryptic ambiguity at all times, I would listen to Radiohead 24/7. Achtung Baby is far from my favorite U2 album, but the lyrics are amazing.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:49 PM   #10
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If I wanted cryptic ambiguity at all times, I would listen to Radiohead 24/7. Achtung Baby is far from my favorite U2 album, but the lyrics are amazing.
So.... You don't like the lyrics from Rattle & Hum or The Joshua Tree? Or lines from their subsequent tours like the "fiberless roman candles" line from Streets or the "shine like stars" lines from With Or Without You? Because yes, Achtung Baby has some good lyrics, yes, but they're part of a progression which leads us to where we are now: intellectual tortoise.
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:03 PM   #11
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Zooropa is a natural progression from Achtung Baby, yes. But you really think Achtung Baby is the natural progression from The Joshua Tree/Rattle & Hum? You do know The Fly is the sound that cut down the Joshua Tree, right?
Read my posts in the Zoo World Order thread.
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:12 PM   #12
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Read my posts in the Zoo World Order thread.
After reading your post, I can agree that the themes of the songs are a natural progression. I can't, however, agree that the music was a natural progression. And that's what this whole thread really gets down to, mostly. An Achtung Baby and a Zooropa mixed with the pounding drums of the 80s, a little bit more poetic lyrics (but virtually the same on most songs except for maybe SDABTO and Ultraviolet), and without some of the dated keyboards or warbling guitar effects. I think the darkness would have stood out more with the desperate sounds of The Joshua Tree mixed in instead of the dance/remixability musical themes of Achtung Baby and Zooropa.
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:20 PM   #13
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So.... You don't like the lyrics from Rattle & Hum or The Joshua Tree? Or lines from their subsequent tours like the "fiberless roman candles" line from Streets or the "shine like stars" lines from With Or Without You? Because yes, Achtung Baby has some good lyrics, yes, but they're part of a progression which leads us to where we are now: intellectual tortoise.
You got that from what I said? There's a place for everything. Your post screams "blunt lyrical statements are always a bad thing" (as if Achtung's lyrics are fully and completely heart-on-sleeve), plus you're punishing Achtung for "spawning" lyrics you don't really care for on future albums. I don't really understand where you're coming from here.
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:50 PM   #14
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I could see it being a semi-natural progression from God Part II, but that's all.
No, God Part II was just the first time that Achtung Baby-esque themes were actually appearing in their work, but I'd argue that the roots of Achtung Baby stretch well into the JT era, and musically to TUF.

TUF proved that U2 are not tied to one musical idea. TUF brought us Brian and Danny, and that is really where the 'experimentation' began. Lyrically, I see both JT and AB in TUF... you get some of the poetic beauty that is (most of) JT, but you also get a lot of the intra-personalism that AB and Pop had (Bad, anyone?). The Eno-esque 'weirdness' was tapped into strongly in Zooropa... I'd argue that the two most Eno-esque U2 albums (other than OS1) are Zooropa and TUF. They are two different realizations of the same basic principle.

Thematically, the AB era began around the time when TUF tour ended. Why did the band choose to abandon its old sound? Because their lives were getting more complex and dark. Similarly to what happened between War and TUF, the naïveté of the past began to give way to a much more dark realization of the present. Simply put, the band was going through a bit of personal hell, and put that into the album. Bono was really at his best; he wrote the lyrics poetically and beautifully, but realistically. And somewhat philosophically. Zooropa continued this in some places (Lemon, especially), and was somewhere between AB and just a big satire of pop culture by the end. Pop took this sort of lyric writing to the extreme, and is one of their biggest lyrical gyms forever, even though it started out trying to be Zooropa. However, even I, an ardent critic of ATYCLB, realize that they couldn't survive on the sort of cynicism that was omnipresent in Pop, so ATYCLB is a much more light-hearted, less dark, less deep, and much less philosophical record than Pop. Bomb continued this, although, thematically, it is easily the weakest in the U2 cannon. It is a collection of songs with some gems... the only connecting theme at all is youth and innocence, but it doesn't flow nearly as well as... anything. R&H is the only album that I would say might be thematically weaker than Bomb.
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Old 08-26-2008, 06:43 PM   #15
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We really need some new material to discuss.
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