January 19, 2009

Creative Bankruptcy Never Sounded So Desperate

U2's new single deserves every last negative review it will ever get. As a first single it's worse than "Beautiful Day" and worse than the depths of "Vertigo." It is a monstrously half-assed jalopy of suck. It's so bad, even "Undercover"-era Mick Jagger is going, "Damn, that's bad."

It really shouldn't be all that shocking—after years of flirting with the concept, they have indeed finally become the new aging Rolling Stones. If the new album is this bad then it will truly be time to hang it up. Three strikes mean you sit down, boyos.


  1. The thing that makes me sad -- and I'm not sure if this is something that works as a kind of pitiful excuse, or if it does, in fact, make the situation worse -- is that it seems like none of them even realize that their recent stuff has been (to put it kindly) sub-par. I mean, if they DO know that they're beyond their best work, why not simply wait longer between albums and try to filter out the crap, hoping more inspired songs will surface?

    Not like they're hurting for paychecks. I think they could potentially slow down their schedule without too much worry.

  2. Well, I think sometimes they know and sometimes they don't. I mean, wouldn't you like to think that you made a great record when you're 48 and still "kicking?" McGuinness, for one, still claims that "Atomic Bomb may be their best" or some such nonsense.

    As for the band, well—Bono's galavanting around the world, Edge is rightfully worried about his child's leukemia (I think that's what it is), Mullen...well, Mullen's favorite ATYCLB tune was "Elevation," and Clayton's just happy to be along for the ride, sober, at this point.

    I think they're just happy to make "good records" (whatever that means) instead of "great art."

    Their last two albums, of course, were neither. This one may not be, either.

  3. I REFUSE to hear it until it's on the radio and I have no choice.

  4. I dislike Bono so much that I can't like anything U2 does.

    I haven't heard this song, but I've hears some lovely (read: horrible) reviews of it.

    That kinda makes me smile.

  5. Krista, you know that you don't have to listen to the radio, right? :)

    Kris, I am always happy to cause smiles. However since I actually DO like much of U2's work, even in this, their current decade of neoclassical suck, well, that's just too bad for me.

    I wouldn't gripe about it if I was a true hater; the worst criticism comes from those who've been (or who perceive they've been) let down. The scary thing for me is to think that, if it's true that they've ALWAYS sucked, then I sure wasted lots of time and brainpower on them.

    But whatever. I'll probably buy the album when it's released, and return to being a weak-minded fool.

  6. Well Keir, if you enjoyed their earlier stuff, and enjoyed spending time listening to it and analyzing it, then it obviously wasn't a waste of time. We're all spouting off opinions, anyway - hell, there are plenty of bands that my opinion has changed about as time has gone on, but that doesn't cheapen the enjoyment I felt at the time.

    Reassessment doesn't necessarily render your previous opinions invalid. :)

  7. Yeah, I keep telling myself that too. It's funny how my opinions have changed for the better regarding our stuff, for example. I can find good in almost everything we've ever recorded—which is why I can sort of see why U2 would be excited all over again to release a new album.

    In other news, I am happily awaiting the new Cracker album. But more about them—or specifically, Lowery—later. Seriously.


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