Pop 25th Anniversary Thread... What do you want?

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Sep 6, 2004
3rd march 1997 was the release date for this stone cold classic, meaning we're only 9 weeks away from its 25th birthday ??????

Like Zooropa, I think Pop is one of my favourite U2 albums, despite it not being widely regarded as being one of their best albums. I love that whole period from Achtung Baby to Pop ( including Passengers), where they were at the absolute peak of their powers onstage and in the studio.

We all know the stories about booking the tour before the album was finished (did we recently learn that decision was down to Edge or did we always know that)... how the band don't seem to acknowledge either actually happened... just how "onboard" was Larry with the Discotheque view?

We know they've tinkered with some songs for the 1990-2000 Best Of as well as the single releases and of course how the tour got off to a very rough start in Las Vegas, but Pop Mart is still one of my favourite tours with an amazing opening which comes second only to the Zoo TV ones.

So what does everyone want from the 25th anniversary re-release (which I think is a stick-on given the ongoing pandemic and where U2 seem to be in the recording process at the moment)?

And what does everyone think we'll get?

Will it be a half-assed reissue of the original album plus some b-sides and the inevitable remixes, or will there be an opening of the U2 vault to let us see some of the early/alternate versions which we know exist?

There were also sessions without Larry due to his injury, so could there be anything from those that the band would see fit to release? Or will those be considered too unfinished?

One thing I noticed with the recent AB anniversary was that I'd pretty much heard all the stories and soundbites about that album before. There were some nice articles and shows like the Jo Whiley one, but so much has been said and written about how that album came together that I didn't learn anything. It would be good to see Pop getting a proper deep dive from some journalists and the band themselves.
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I’ve never cared for the Best Of versions, so if they go further down that road I would hope it’s supplemental, as opposed to “…a New, Definitive Pop!”

My ideal release would give us three versions;

- Pre-Pop - demos, Larry-less sessions, alternate versions

- Pop - remix it, remaster it, just don’t add anything to retcon the actual release

- Post-Pop - the rest

I don’t really remember any inspired remixes from the era, but I’ve never been much into the clubby mixes from any era.

I don’t think alternate Popmart shows are as enticing as getting those extra ZooTV shows we keep hoping for. Although it’s not regarded well, a super cut of Edge Karaoke could be fun.

The thing with Pop is that they could have a lot of fun with a reissue. IMHO U2 merch is generally terrible, but it was - also IMHO - at its peak with Popmart. The vibrant veneer hiding the inherent darkness of the album is so cool.

Anyway, I just had a thought that maybe the stripped down sessions that Adam has alluded to are… for acoustic Pop? I’d be intrigued. Skeptical, but intrigued.
Also, I’d like to replace the lemon shopping cart shirt I got at the Philly Popmart stop that DIDN’T have tour dates on the back. I may be wrong but I believe all of the reprints of that shirt have had dates and boy do I hate tour date shirts.
Looking at that article above, it would seem there were 3-6 months of Larry-less sessions and sessions where they were re-integrating him. Those sessions sound really interesting for fans like us, but I guess they would never see the light of day.

Of course, there's bits of early songs in the promo video that's been on YT for years.

You're right Pacemaker, there was some cool merchandise from that era - they really leaned in to it from the album design, tour staging, merchandise, tour programme etc.
One thing that is pretty cool to hear is the Woody Harrelson interview to Edge about Pop. Woody sounds like any of us talking Pop (fanboy) and we get some great info from Edge. Could've been longer but still good.

I hope they do something the 25th. It deserves a box set of some sort with all the B Sides and maybe a demo album (like AB 20th received). And there are quite a few pro shot shows taken around that time.

The concert from Mexico is remastered and looked awesome. Maybe release it on 4K.

We shall hope and see
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I hope we'll get a superdeluxe version from this great album in cd/bluray with an unreleased popmartconcert. Extras like demos and alternate versions, or songs that didn't make the album.

We'll get nothing or a 'superdeluxe version' on streaming services with the same old stuff. And yes, Popmart Mexico for one day streaming on u2.com. Mayby some dull remixes from that era. And another vinylversion in rainbowcolours.

No confidence at all in their release-strategy. They care about money, not their fans anymore.
I'd be pleasantly surprised by anything because I'm expecting nothing. Sorry to be the pessimist.

I have the POP guitar tab book and have been practicing these songs so much that I'm considering commemorating the 25th with a livestream of acoustic versions; just in a way that doesn't collect profit from it or get taken down immediately for infringement.

It's my favorite album of all time and I'd hate to see the anniversary pass with nothing more than an "On this day 25 years ago" social media post with link to listen to the album; which is what I'm thinking we'll get.
After not releasing a vinyl box for AB that included a zootv show, and ATYCLB not having anything new and only having Boston, I am not overly optimistic this release will have anything interesting on it
No matter what they do, they ain't going to release video of any live shows not already out there. So that's Mexico City - I guess most people on here now have the "remastered" version from the YouTube virtual road thing this year.

I can only guess that their reason for this is the same thinking that stops them releasing any sort of unfinished/un-polished audio which I think is a shame.
March 3rd will go past without the slightest mention from the band. I doubt they even have much input into what gets posted on their social media anyway.
They'll share only the Bono/Edge acoustic Staring at the Sun from the Popmart tour, with the caption "More of this kind of thing coming soon!"
I don’t really remember any inspired remixes from the era, but I’ve never been much into the clubby mixes from any era.

The Howie B. Remix of Discotheque is quite unique and definitely not your ordinary dance mix of a U2 song. The Mofo mixes were nothing special. I remember hearing Miami thinking they would remix the hell out of it. Lo and behold, I have yet to hear a remix of it. What do I know?
The Howie B. Remix of Discotheque is quite unique and definitely not your ordinary dance mix of a U2 song. The Mofo mixes were nothing special. I remember hearing Miami thinking they would remix the hell out of it. Lo and behold, I have yet to hear a remix of it. What do I know?

One of the Disco remixes was like 10 minutes long and I used to play it all the time.
Off the top of my head, the only U2 remixes worth listening to are that Lady With The Spinning Head one and the New Year’s Day one by Kevorkian.
As a gigantic aside, I realized this year also happens to be the 30th anniversary of Army of Darkness, and am now imagining and U2xAsh Williams "collab":

"Pop Smart... Pop S-Mart!"

Anyhoo, happy new year everyone.
I’m sure we’d get a lesser version of a 1996 demo with 2022 Bono lyrics and vocals.

I’d be shocked if we got many - if any - true work-in-progress versions. I’m sure we’ll get 2 CDs full of 42 shitty remix versions instead.

Even worse, we’ll get some sort of soundbite in the press from Bono explaining how Pop was where they pushed it too far, and how it taught them to get back to the “basics,” like everything they’ve done for the last 20+ years.
This would be The Monkey's Paw outcome, and what bums me out the most is that this is one of the more likely scenarios if we get anything at all.


Miami and Pop Mart Bullet had so much swagger & funk to them. Brilliant stuff.

It’s damn true.
So, if nothing else, I’d love an earlier-in-tour pro-shot release (Leeds or Rotterdam come to mind) that gets a nice visual remaster.
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