Indulge me as I rant - Page 2 - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Your Blue Room > Everything You Know Is Wrong > Everything You Know Is Wrong Archive
Click Here to Login
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-22-2004, 06:22 PM   #16
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Basstrap,

Fair enough. It's nice to get honesty from people, and even U2 would have it no other way. I remember an interview from 1981 that I saw a few years back when Bono said he'd hope that the moment they became cliche "wallpaper" music, that people would come up to them and tell them so. He insisted that that day would never happen. Interesting stuff.....

Now to my opinion: I actually feel that Pop was the album where U2 began to cator a little too heavily to the commercial aspect of U2. By that I mean, they allowed the commercial necessity ("necessity" because U2 is a business as well, afterall) to overtake the artistic one. Before this, both were in balance...but with Pop I felt there was much more of a compromise than there was in the past. The songwriting suddenly had an agenda - U2 were now catering to the commercial viability of, in this case, the electronica storm (that ironically never came). Pop was an album that took a risk commercially, but not because U2 didn't want to compromise, but because electronica simply might not (and didn't) become the "next big thing" in the mainstream as they had hoped it would.

Further, songs such as 'Wake Up Dead Man', while formulated to sound desperate and intimate, were still a formulation. In other words, it sounds forced (to me), as did a few others. This trend continued with ATYCLB. It's no longer "songwriting by accident". U2 songs now sound like they've been constructed with the end in mind. To me, the magic that you find in a great song (not just U2, but anyone) usually comes when the "accident" happens - songs such as 'One', 'Bad', and probably half of The Joshua Tree and Achtung Baby were born this way. That's the U2 I miss. ATYCLB does have some accidental songwriting. 'Kite' is by no coincidence one of those songs. It's the best thing they've done since 'Stay' in my opinion.

Another point: In my opinion, the only time in the last couple years where U2 really took a break from this type of compromising was during the M$H soundtrack recordings. I adore 'Stateless'. It's got that evocative, organic feel that most closely resembles The Joshua Tree. Songs like 'Never Let Me Go' are what I used to love about U2 - songs that allow you to float down a river or a sea shore or a field or a winter night by a fire and wash you up on a beach somwhere to let you soak in the flickering light of the sublime. Songs that take you places.

The songwriting on ATYCLB is actually very subtle in some ways, but that's probably not what is meant when people complain that it is "trying too hard". Songs such as 'Stuck' and 'Wild Honey' come across as effortless, but they're highly orchestrated. This is something to be admired, yes, but it's a different kind of songwriting than I'm used to from U2. I miss the "accidents".
__________________

__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 06:51 PM   #17
War Child
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Ingerland
Posts: 658
Local Time: 08:18 AM
I'm going to be incredibly bitchy here so forgive me, but is the only reason anyone has a problem with ATYCLB is because in many ways they wish they were ten year's younger.
That album did change they way I looked at a lot of things not least of all music but are you saying I've been conned into that just by clever marketing?
__________________

__________________
tarquinsuperb is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 06:59 PM   #18
Blue Crack Addict
 
beli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In a frock in Western Australia
Posts: 15,464
Local Time: 03:18 PM
tarquinsuperb,

Wished U2 were 10 years younger?

Or the person listening wished he/she were 10 years younger?

__________________
beli is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:00 PM   #19
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Are you asking me? If so, no, that wasn't my point at all. I'm basically saying that their modus operandi has changed in that they now seem to begin an album with an agenda rather than simply letting the ebb and flow dictate the direction and course of an album. I'm not saying it's a bad thing. I'm simply saying I preferred it when U2 let the music shape itself rather than the other way around.
__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:13 PM   #20
War Child
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Ingerland
Posts: 658
Local Time: 08:18 AM
Is it that you believe the quality of music has become a secondary concern and they enter the studio and go "Well we've had fun with it in the past, but the record company President needs another 20 million record sales so go heavy on the production and we'll start promoting it ASAP....."?
The other thing that's been hinted at is that doesn't an album of 'accidents' give a really disjointed feel?
__________________
tarquinsuperb is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:19 PM   #21
Blue Crack Addict
 
beli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In a frock in Western Australia
Posts: 15,464
Local Time: 03:18 PM
Michael, sorry that was a question for Tarquin.

I do agree with you though Michael
__________________
beli is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:24 PM   #22
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by tarquinsuperb
Is it that you believe the quality of music has become a secondary concern and they enter the studio and go "Well we've had fun with it in the past, but the record company President needs another 20 million record sales so go heavy on the production and we'll start promoting it ASAP....."?
The other thing that's been hinted at is that doesn't an album of 'accidents' give a really disjointed feel?
No, I don't think the quality of music has become a secondary concern. In fact, if anything I would say that U2 have never been so concerned with "quality" as they are now. I think that's partly what I don't like. Because the stakes are so high now, U2 don't take as many artistic risks. They want the music to be accepted as classic to a mass audience. This requires an agenda, and this, in turn, requires one to craft songs in a particular mold. I don't think it's about money at all.

Regarding your 2nd point: I don't think accidental songwriting would necessarily result in a disjointed feel. Look at The Unforgettable Fire, for example. Many of the tracks were improvised. The only real songwriter's song is 'Pride'. The rest were born through experimenting while jamming and coming up with atmospheres and ideas on the spot. The music was born out of "feeling" and hoping the next step would lead to a place where a song would begin to take shape. Just as 'Bad' did. That's where the magic comes in (for me anyway).
__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:27 PM   #23
Rock n' Roll Doggie
VIP PASS
 
Bono's shades's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: The back of beyond
Posts: 5,038
Local Time: 02:18 AM
I understand how you feel, Basstrap. I have moments when I wonder if U2 really have the fire and passion that they used to have. I didn't hear a whole lot of that in ATYCLB, although Electrical Storm was a nice improvement, IMHO. I'm genuinely excited about the new album, but this tiny little voice in my head keeps warning me not to get my hopes up too high. I guess I'm afraid of another letdown.
__________________
Bono's shades is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:29 PM   #24
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Quote:
Originally posted by beli
Michael, sorry that was a question for Tarquin.

I do agree with you though Michael
haha, beli, the funny part is that my response was also for Tarquin! I really must use the quote feature more!
__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:38 PM   #25
Blue Crack Addict
 
beli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In a frock in Western Australia
Posts: 15,464
Local Time: 03:18 PM


ditto re the quote feature. We shall just sit and wait for tarquin, then
__________________
beli is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:39 PM   #26
War Child
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Ingerland
Posts: 658
Local Time: 08:18 AM
Sorry I don't normally get involved in stand up rows with people on here, I'm normal very uncontraversial so agologies for that.
I don't actually know how to use the quote mark things but I think in the second last post we found why we disagree, for me and maybe this displays my relative youth I don't know, but the only U2 I've not 'got' (don't quite understand) is UF.
Sure I adore Pride but the album like so many of U2's has never been close to hair's on the back of the neck for me.
I don't know maybe we could divert the forum and someone could explain it to me.
PS I think I've been further and unnecessarily put off by the fact that it's Chris Martin's favourite U2 album.
__________________
tarquinsuperb is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:41 PM   #27
Blue Crack Addict
 
beli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: In a frock in Western Australia
Posts: 15,464
Local Time: 03:18 PM
to use the quote thingies - go to the bottom right hand corner of the post you want to quote and hit the quote button
__________________
beli is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 07:54 PM   #28
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Tarquin - you know, our tastes...it's all subjective. You do raise an interesting thought for me though: I wonder if U2 has simply adapted to the modern world, leaving us fans of not just a different style, but a different time. Perhaps it is U2 who should be commended if this is the case. They've managed to stay current, while the rest of us yearn for a different time and, in some ways, a different band. I suppose it's a commentary on how our society has evolved (or maybe devolved) when a band has to rearrange their philosophy on how to write great music in order to stay relavent. This is all theory, mind you. Simply put, I prefer the magic - man.
__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 08:02 PM   #29
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
Michael Griffiths's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Playa Del Carmen, Mexico
Posts: 3,925
Local Time: 07:18 AM
Oh, I forgot to add, tarquin - I think you not "getting" The Unforgettable Fire is perhaps case in point of my theory that U2 have adapted to changing times. Art imitates life, they say, and U2 imitate a different life now. But you will get UF one day, don't you worry! It's one of those albums that kind of sneaks up, settles down, and dissolves into your skin, eventually making its way to your heart. It's the innocence of that record that gets me everytime - it's U2 before they had any influences....U2 writing songs that reminded you of no one but them and your deepest emotions. I don't think any band today, including U2, would ever put a song like 'Elvis Presely and America' on it. But on UF, it's seductive...a language all its own that we all somehow understand (don't worry, you will! )
__________________
Michael Griffiths is offline  
Old 08-22-2004, 08:09 PM   #30
She's the One
 
martha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Orange County and all over the goddamn place
Posts: 42,358
Local Time: 11:18 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Griffiths
I wonder if U2 has simply adapted to the modern world, leaving us fans of not just a different style, but a different time. Perhaps it is U2 who should be commended if this is the case. They've managed to stay current, while the rest of us yearn for a different time and, in some ways, a different band.
Evolution and adaptation are fine, but if it means making records that don't challenge the ears and the head, then I'll walk on all fours, thanks. Staying current shouldn't mean making records that get played to soothe and pacify, and that's what I heard with ATYCLB.

I'm with you, Michael, Basstrap, beli, and the rest. I want the new record to knock me back in my chair with the power of the words, the music, and the commitment. I don't want to "feel ten years younger" (whatever that means); I want music that makes my heart race and my mind boggle.
__________________

__________________
martha is offline  
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:18 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com