October 04, 2011

Love as Radiation and Other Sloppy Metaphors

Well, here we are ten months down the greasy pole of 2011, looking into a rotten Fall. High time for some comfort food, right? Track 10 in my deathly nostalgic 20 years of "Achtung Baby" series is "Ultraviolet," a show-stopper from both ZooTV (1992/3)…



…and U2/360 (2009-11)…



I wrote some other stuff about it here

"Ultraviolet (Light My Way)" - I didn't think so highly of this one until I got why Bono was singing it while hiding behind those twin devils of MacPhisto and the Mirrorball Man. It's a first-person exhortation from Satan! No really, all you need to do is picture MacPhisto singing lines like "the day is dark as the night as long" and "feel like trash but you make me feel clean/I'm in the black, can't see or be seen," and the whole lyric congeals into a pretty desperate narrative. Why do you think that the nightly Zoo TV prank calls immediately preceded this song?
…and here
"Ultraviolet (Light My Way)" - This epic Achtung Baby song had been mothballed ever since the final legs of the Zoo TV tour as it went Down Under in 1993. "Ultraviolet" usually preceded "With or Without You" on that tour's encore, and it did basically the same thing on 360°, a regular feature in which Bono sang the whole second verse an octave higher. Considering how shabby his voice had been on the 1997 and 2001 tours, that was a revelation. Undoubted setlist highlight for all of the 2009 and a few of the 2010 and 2011 shows.
…and despite the inherent hideousness of immature fanboyism, that will just have to do, since I have to gear up for a potentially ugly meeting tomorrow.

In other decrepit-U2 news today, the "Achtung Baby" reissue tracklist was finally confirmed. Literally lots of reissued stuff...but I'm a fool and it will soon part me with my money. Two more U2 song posts left. Lots, lots more of infinitely interesting "30 Songs" posts left. Hang in there.

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