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Old 01-25-2002, 05:05 PM   #1
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Best Album Trilogy

Whenever I think about U2's albums, I think of them in trilogies. Boy, Ocotber, and War are one, The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree, and Rattle and Hum the second, and Achtung Baby, Zooropa, and POP the third (ATYCLB doesn't figure in yet, that would blow my whole theroy )

Anyway, I was thinking about how I would rate them, and how the band progressed in those periods. This is how I see it.

Boy, October, War: The weakest trilogy. Boy I love, October and War I can barely stand to listen to. I think of this era, Boy, Gloria, SBS, and New Year's Day is pretty much the bulk of everything that's worth anything in the long run (those non-Boy songs mainly because of how they've evolved over time in live shows and in meaning). I would chock it up to youth, but I think Boy sounds just as good as any of their albums, so I just think October and War are slight bumps in the road.

Unforgettable Fire, Joshua Tree, Rattle and Hum: The middle of the pack, in ever sense. UF is where the band really started to hone their own sound in my opinion, and stood out of the crowd a bit. Joshua Tree is pure rock and roll at its finest, and obviously put U2 on the map. Rattle and Hum was a "glorious failure" as Bono put it, a growing pain that had to happen for the future brilliance to happen.

Achtung Baby, Zooropa, POP: Hands down the best to me. Achtung Baby is my favorite album by any humans in the of the world, so enough said there. Zooropa takes the idea of Zoo TV and puts it to a tune, and is a weird, trippy masterpiece. Though not extremely commercial success, it looked like a Star Wars movie in sales next to POP (at least that's how the media spun it). POP, the red-headed stepchild of U2 albums, is the darkest, pessimistic, intelligient album U2 ever made, which is one of the reasons it gets wasted by so many people I think.

And with ATYCLB we apparently have the beginning of a new trilogy. Will it top the first three? We'll have to wait and see.

So does anyone else think this way, and if so, how do you rate them?
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Old 01-25-2002, 05:24 PM   #2
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Well, since the third one contains two of my three favorite U2 albums (AB at #2 and Pop at #3), I'll go with that one. I don't know, I always considered Zooropa to be the weak link there, but I think it's really the glue holding those two albums together. It really is a very good transition, and solidified that they weren't coming out from the ether. I like those three albums cause you can play them at parties too.

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Old 01-25-2002, 05:40 PM   #3
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What Foxxern said.
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Old 01-25-2002, 05:50 PM   #4
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I also would rank the Achtung Baby, Zooropa, Pop trilogy as the best. But I think War is much more than a "bump in the road." In fact, I think it's one of their best albums. I agree with you that SBS and New Year's Day are the standouts, but the rest of the songs are, I would argue, equally superb. Drowning Man, Surrender, Like a Song, Two Hearts Beat as One, '40'...this is raw, powerful, beautiful music. Just my opinion
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Old 01-25-2002, 06:09 PM   #5
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Even tho R&H is a weak "album," I would definitely go with that trilogy, because of UF and JT. I actually think more of those two as a pair, R&H more like a project that had elements of those albums, a little bit of a look to the future, and some slightly misguided live stuff. I just love the UF/JT pair because JT seems to grow out of UF, they are different yet similar, and their different strengths fill in each other's gaps.

And those two records have Bono's most moving, meaningful and poetic lyrics ever, IMHO.

Man, it makes me sad to think of October and War as nearly worthless throwaways. Those used to be two of my top three U2 albums--and I'm a young fan, I became a fan in 1994 when I was 15. (And I hated what they were doing at the time. I've mellowed somewhat since.) I would much rather listen to October or War than Boy. Those are amazing albums, and Bono's singing is better on October than on Boy, and better than on much of War.

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[This message has been edited by scatteroflight (edited 01-25-2002).]
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:01 PM   #6
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See, I listen to Boy and I hear freshness, innocence, and a band exploring what they're capable of musically. October feels like nothing but rehashed Boy with less urgency and resonance. It just feels forced. But if you like it, more power to you.

War seems to take things a baby step forward. The sound is still somewhat "blah" and typical of the sound of rock at that time, but the message packs more of a punch. SBS and New Year's Day are exceptions, and though they can be written off as the "popular" ones, I do think they're hands down the best tracks of the album. Still feels a little forced and not all that inspired to me though as a whole.

I'm not saying War is a throwaway. I think it was a substantial step for the band, and let them in the right direction musicaly. I do reluctantly think October is 90% throwaway. And it really pains me to say that because I really want to like every U2 song, but it just doesn't click at all for me. Again, if you like these, more power to you, this is just how I feel.

I don't think the 80's work comes anywhere close to equalling the 90's.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:03 PM   #7
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Quote:
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What Foxxern said.
Kewl, I've been quoted, sort of.



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Old 01-25-2002, 07:10 PM   #8
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I don't consider October and War to just be "bumps in the road". I think from Boy through Joshua Tree, they improved with every album. I actually can't listen to Boy and October all the way through though. I like maybe 5 songs on each album. War, I like most of the album. I think Refugee and Red Light are a bit weak, but the rest I think is great. Sunday Bloody Sunday and New Year's Day are the standouts, but Two Hearts Beat As One and Like A Song rock! I'd like to see either of those played live again.

My favorite trilogy is UF/JT/R+H. UF and JT just kind of flow together. They have the same sound. I love it.

My favorite album is Achtung Baby, but Zooropa is my least favorite, and Pop I'm kind of in between with. I like a lot of songs on all 3 albums, but as a trilogy, it is not my favorite.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:14 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dustybot:


I don't think the 80's work comes anywhere close to equalling the 90's.
I think the opposite, but to each their own. Except I find Achtung more and more amazing, espec. Edge's guitar work, probably his best ever--but still I usually only listen to a few songs on it. Definitely more people on this forum seem to agree with you.

Like you, I really want to like everything by U2 but so much of the 90's stuff leaves me totally cold or irritates me. But I hope to give it all another chance soon, which I haven't done in a while--and you should do the same with October and War!



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Old 01-25-2002, 07:17 PM   #10
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Although AB is my favorite album, I would have to vote for UF/JT/RH because all three of those together are the best trilogy.

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Old 01-25-2002, 07:22 PM   #11
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Scatteroflight, you are in fact the exact opposite of me when it comes to U2 preference. Which is cool, to see a totally different opinion trying to be justified. I respect everyone's opinions, no matter how much I disagree with them (I disagree with your a lot, hehe).


How's this for an opinion: Those four drunk Irish men can make some nifty rock music.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:23 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dustybot:
Scatteroflight, you are in fact the exact opposite of me when it comes to U2 preference. Which is cool, to see a totally different opinion trying to be justified. I respect everyone's opinions, no matter how much I disagree with them (I disagree with your a lot, hehe).


How's this for an opinion: Those four drunk Irish men can make some nifty rock music.
Yep.

I'm working on tolerance--I think I have improved a lot--I've made the mistake too many times of getting involved in Pop-related threads or even starting them



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Old 01-25-2002, 07:24 PM   #13
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hands down the AB/Zooropa/POP trilogy for my tastes.

That said, I must weigh in and add that October is one of my favorite U2 albums. I like it much better than Boy and listen to it on a weekly if not daily basis.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:28 PM   #14
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I don't get it. I just don't get it. I have gone over October with a fine toothed comb and can't figure out what people see in it. Maybe it's my lack of Christian mentalities, I dunno. It's just never struck me the right way. Ah well, I guess that's why they made 9 other albums, huh?
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dustybot:
I don't get it. I just don't get it. I have gone over October with a fine toothed comb and can't figure out what people see in it. Maybe it's my lack of Christian mentalities, I dunno. It's just never struck me the right way. Ah well, I guess that's why they made 9 other albums, huh?
pssst...It's because you must not be a "true fan".
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:35 PM   #16
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pssst...It's because you must not be a "true fan".
NOOOO!!!! I can't live anymore! Someone end the pain!!!!!
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:37 PM   #17
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NOOOO!!!! I can't live anymore! Someone end the pain!!!!!
bwahahaha.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:38 PM   #18
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Does this mean I have to live in the Radiohead forum now?
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:41 PM   #19
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Does this mean I have to live in the Radiohead forum now?
You might be fitter, happier and more productive if you did.
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Old 01-25-2002, 07:42 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by scatteroflight:
Even tho R&H is a weak "album," I would definitely go with that trilogy, because of UF and JT. I actually think more of those two as a pair, R&H more like a project that had elements of those albums, a little bit of a look to the future, and some slightly misguided live stuff.


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