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Old 07-03-2002, 11:18 AM   #1
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U2 In The Mind of Ignorance: Why Many Will Never Get 'It'

Guitarist (Issue 225 July 2002)

U2 #22 in The Top 50 Rock bands of all time - as voted for by readers of 'Guitarist' magazine.

#22 U2

Pompous Irish twats or spirited saviours of rock: discuss. Whatever you think, U2's continued presence is all about rejuvenation. From their new wave beginnings to the mega selling rediscovery of American roots rock, via modernistic disco dance to forty-something gents growing up responsibly; U2's standing - sometimes overshadowed by Bono's flag-waving(literally) for the worthy causes of the world - is hard to dispute. The Edge's delay and effects-laden soundscapes, not to mention minimalist note content, easily elevate him into Guitar God category. The 2000 album All That You Can't Leave Behind returned to the classic guitar-driven formula and is chasing The Joshua Tree in terms of sales; Achtung Baby is essential listening too.

Rock Rating:
Attitude: 9/10
Style: 6/10
Drugs: 4/10
Riffs: 6/10

Formed: 1978
Classic Guitarist Line-up: The Edge
Favoured Axes: Fender Strat/Tele, Gibson Explorer, Gibson Les Paul Goldtop
Amps: Vox AC30
Essential Listening: The Joshua Tree (1987)


I try and not get too upset when I see polls like this, considering what this magazine used for their rock rating: drugs? This magazine proved to me once again how much substance U2 has that what others see as minimal, U2 fans, or just fans of music see as substantial.

I see a lot of indifference, or just plain hate for U2, because in many instances, the word saviors are used in conjunction with their music and message on a whole. Maybe bands with substance are just a thing of the past. It's now all about promoting the persons above the music. So above, you get a good glimpse of where rock music, or just music in general is. Especially when the first 4 out of 5 sections on the rock rating our about lifestyle, as opposed to musicianship and consistency.

So please, don't get upset, many people will never get U2, because U2 is unwilling to play the game, or play by the rules that other band are expected to play, and willingly do so, but you have to asked yourselves, where will many of these bands be in 10 years? U2 is about 4 men who allow themselves to take a back seat to a music that they know is bigger than themselves, and yet, are realistic to know that to get an ego ahead of this 'big music' would be suicide for U2 and any other band for that matter.

So U2, I'm proud of the fact that your #22 in the mind of many ignorant rock fans, but we know that you stand head and shoulders above them all. Discuss.

Chris
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Old 07-03-2002, 11:44 AM   #2
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News submission

Thank you for the news.

If you see that U2NEWS.COM or U2 News in the Forum does NOT have an article/news blurb, please PM me so that I can add it.


Thank you.


~HA
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Old 07-03-2002, 12:07 PM   #3
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I think many people are used to pigeon-holing rock and roll bands into the cliched sex, drugs & r&r category. Therefore, U2 make them confused and sort of uncomfortable. They slap on U2 the label of being "pompous" or "pure" since they don't understand them.

I like them b/c of the same reasons others don't!
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Old 07-03-2002, 12:11 PM   #4
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Maybe some people don't like U2 because, well...they just don't like the music. People aren't necessarily "not getting it." I think if we start assuming that attitude, we've become more pompous and arrogant than the people who came up with this list.
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Old 07-03-2002, 12:41 PM   #5
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Totally true Mulholland Drive!

I was commenting on fiting them into the categories of "drug" rating or whatever and the obvious difference some people look for in music- some artists don't have fans that ask a lot of them~ I think U2 does and I think U2 asks a lot of themselves, which is why they didn't quite fit the mold this poll was looking for.

Chris said it perfectly:
Quote:
Especially when the first 4 out of 5 sections on the rock rating our about lifestyle, as opposed to musicianship and consistency.
if that's what people are voting on- of course U2 won't rank high. And I'm proud of that.
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Old 07-03-2002, 01:56 PM   #6
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ex-squeeze me???

*steps up to the rant podium*

Chris, I've thought this same thing for YEARS. But you know what? Music, like art, is in the "ear" of the beholder. It's the same way I'll never "get it" when it comes to country music, opera, rap, Britney, or boy bands (save ONE, of course). They're weird, they're foreign, they don't "trip my trigger" so to speak, so because I don't know much about them, perhaps I've formed opinions that may not be true. Same goes for U2. They're probably the most unusual rock band ever, and because (which I've said before) they're the type you almost have to study up on to really *understand* where they're coming from (as far as they let us anyway), most people definitely will not "get it."

I also think "intelligent" music/rock scares people because it's so foreign....the music mainstream audience just wants entertainment they don't want to have to think about too deeply. U2 really is almost a music genre of its own making, to the point that they completely throw the typical music critic for a loop....so then critics have nothing more intelligent to do than to either pigeon-hole them into another style of music (a square peg in a round hole), or to make up some inane explanation to why they don't "get it" without actually owning up to the fact, and giving them props for being the great band they are!
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Old 07-03-2002, 04:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I was commenting on fiting them into the categories of "drug" rating or whatever and the obvious difference some people look for in music- some artists don't have fans that ask a lot of them~ I think U2 does and I think U2 asks a lot of themselves, which is why they didn't quite fit the mold this poll was looking for.
Well put Carrie, and yes, by saying that some people won't get it was in no way a put down, or sounding pompous. I was simply stating this so that many U2 fans who seem to think the band doesn't get its fair share of kudos will realize that U2 just doesn't fit the mold of many other bands out their, and for this reason, people don't seem to take them seriously, when in fact, U2's music is some of the most serious music both lyrically and musically I've ever heard.

Chris
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Old 07-03-2002, 04:45 PM   #8
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Re: U2 In The Mind of Ignorance: Why Many Will Never Get 'It'

Quote:
Originally posted by spanisheyes
[B]


Pompous Irish twats or spirited saviours of rock: discuss.

Sorry but i read that in the music lib last week and i laughed
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Old 07-03-2002, 06:37 PM   #9
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I think that a lot of people get their panties in a bundle over how well U2 does with their music. I never pay ne attention to polls like this because they arent very important to me because I know what I like and polls wont change my mind.
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Old 07-03-2002, 06:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I think many people are used to pigeon-holing rock and roll bands into the cliched sex, drugs & r&r category. Therefore, U2 make them confused and sort of uncomfortable. They slap on U2 the label of being "pompous" or "pure" since they don't understand them.

I like them b/c of the same reasons others don't!
What olive said.
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Old 07-03-2002, 07:24 PM   #11
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I think it is for the most part of matter of taste. For me, the draw of U2 was the sound: The music was just fun to listen to. The more I got into them, the more involved I became with their messages. The deeper I got the more I fell in love with not only the music but the whole persona of the band as a whole and the members.

So my thinking is (and yes I do have a point ) is that most likely the U2-haters didn't like the music to begin with, and thus disregarded all things about them. For someone who initially does not like the music they are going to find ways to take pot shots at them. Like those morons in Rolling Stone who in their column make sure to say something bad about Bono. I noticed that they are always making the comments to the effect of him being pompous windbag, however, the column has no real substance to it.
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Old 07-03-2002, 07:45 PM   #12
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Re: ex-squeeze me???

Quote:
Originally posted by Discoteque
U2 really is almost a music genre of its own making, to the point that they completely throw the typical music critic for a loop....so then critics have nothing more intelligent to do than to either pigeon-hole them into another style of music (a square peg in a round hole), or to make up some inane explanation to why they don't "get it" without actually owning up to the fact, and giving them props for being the great band they are!
I completely agree, Disco. U2 is incredibly unique as a rock band- I can't think of any other band that has such a diverse collection of albums. Some people enjoy this kind of uniqueness while others don't (I once had a friend tell me that she hates it when bands try to have really different sounding albums, and I was thinking "but that's what I love about U2!"). I guess it just boils down to a matter of opinion, but it makes me wonder why some people "get it" and some don't.
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Old 07-03-2002, 11:36 PM   #13
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Some people are uncomfortable with stars that won't stay in what I call a "guilded cage", i.e, a gold cage. Rock stars or movie stars are supposed to be strictly that, and they're assigned very scripted roles as such. The second they step out of that role, they're doing something "wrong" because it's not in the script. It's not even particularly in the script for them to have brains or to have anything meaningful to say or do. They're just supposed to look at you and smile or whatever. In that sense, Britney is the perfect star. She fits the "guilded cage" stereotype to the core. She's *just* a star. And they are supposed to stay *just* stars, in their particular place on the social stratum. U2 don't do that, they're not afraid to step outside of the guilded cage and show brains and intentions beyond fame, fortune and glamor. This scares some people. They can't handle this kind of nonconformist behavior. This behavior is actually very rock 'n roll because it breaks the rules and gets under peoples' skin. But--to hell with them, if you stereotype people you pay a price in the cultural stakes. I don't pay any attention to these people because quite frankly I consider them idiots.
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Old 07-05-2002, 07:46 AM   #14
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I didn't really see anything terribly offensive about that poll. Most of these parametres have very little to do with U2's merits and style. And I agree that U2 and Bono especially can be terribly pretencious and even pompous sometimes, I just don't see that as a reason to dislike them,
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Old 07-05-2002, 02:46 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Saracene
I didn't really see anything terribly offensive about that poll. Most of these parametres have very little to do with U2's merits and style. And I agree that U2 and Bono especially can be terribly pretencious and even pompous sometimes, I just don't see that as a reason to dislike them,

Oh, I don't care about the poll, either. It's just an article. Hell, when you're famous, people will write good, bad and indifferent opinions about you. I don't sweat it but I do sometimes have opinions on what they write. It's apples and oranges: what do you like? I love apples but personally I don't give a damn if someone else hates them.
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Old 07-05-2002, 02:49 PM   #16
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I find this post to be offensive. Calling people ignorant because they "don't get" U2? There's nothing to get. You either like them or you don't. The fact that they do something for me is all I need. I couldn't care less if they do that for anyone else.
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Old 07-05-2002, 02:56 PM   #17
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Hmmm well with that kind of categories no wonder they aren't recognised.

Like others said, what is probably puzzling about U2 is the un-clicheness (is that a word?) of the band: yes, there's the attitude and the ego, but also, there are messages and causes they fight for.

I mean, maybe one of the things (along with Bono's activism which so many use as an excuse to not listen to U2) about U2 that is preventing them from getting even more acclaim is the (compared to most popular bands) relative high complexness of the lyrics and messages - there are still U2 songs where i'm not sure i know what Bono's trying to get across.
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Old 07-05-2002, 03:03 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mulholland Drive
I find this post to be offensive. Calling people ignorant because they "don't get" U2? There's nothing to get. You either like them or you don't. The fact that they do something for me is all I need. I couldn't care less if they do that for anyone else.
ig∑no∑rance
The condition of being uneducated, unaware, or uninformed.

I'm sorry you find this post so offensive. It wasn't meant to be. I was simply stating that what we have hear is ignorance in the most positive of state Mulholland Drive. I still stick with my original opinion, and it is only an opinion at that, that the criteria that makes a great rock band went unnoticed. Now I would have been ill advised to use the word stupid as opposed to ignorance, but again it wasn't meant to sound or be belittling. But there is some ignorance involved when you pigeonhole a band like U2 with the criteria mentioned above, that is all I was stating.

Chris
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Old 07-05-2002, 03:04 PM   #19
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Re: U2 In The Mind of Ignorance: Why Many Will Never Get 'It'

Quote:
Originally posted by spanisheyes
[B]Guitarist (Issue 225 July 2002)
So U2, I'm proud of the fact that your #22 in the mind of many ignorant rock fans, but we know that you stand head and shoulders above them all. Discuss.
#22? That's blasphemy if you ask me!

There was a really good essay on atu2.com a few months back called "Keeping the U2 Secret Again." I really related to that one. Have you read it?
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Old 07-05-2002, 03:10 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by spanisheyes


ig∑no∑rance
The condition of being uneducated, unaware, or uninformed.

I'm sorry you find this post so offensive. It wasn't meant to be. I was simply stating that what we have hear is ignorance in the most positive of state Mulholland Drive. I still stick with my original opinion, and it is only an opinion at that, that the criteria that makes a great rock band went unnoticed. Now I would have been ill advised to use the word stupid as opposed to ignorance, but again it wasn't meant to sound or be belittling. But there is some ignorance involved when you pigeonhole a band like U2 with the criteria mentioned above, that is all I was stating.

Chris
Thanks for clarifying.
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