Welp, I survived it all: 3250m in the pool, 44.5k on the bike and a 1.16k brick run AND I feel pretty good. Oh, and there some planking and squatting and plyometrics thrown in for good measure. It’s time now then for some grilled sausage on a bun, some of Kelly’s amazing steak fries (a possible wobbly pop or two) and ‘The Unforgettable Fire‘ album by U2.
Don’t judge – U2 had their moments.
In fact, if you have to own just one U2 album this is it. ‘Rattle and Hum‘ and the ‘Joshua Tree‘ were really great albums in their own forthright – I might even acknowledge some fun moments on ‘Achtung Baby‘ – but this album would be my Desert Island choice for sure.
Lucky for me because it’s the U2 only album I own on vinyl.
In many ways, U2 took their fondness for sonic bombast as far as it could go on ‘War‘, so it isn’t a complete surprise that they chose to explore the intricacies of the Edge’s layered, effects-laden guitar on this follow-up album released in 1984.
Working with producers Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois, U2 created a dark, near-hallucinatory series of interlocking soundscapes that are occasionally punctuated by recognizable songs and melodies.
In such a setting, the band both flourishes and flounders, creating some of their greatest music, as well as some of their worst. ‘Elvis Presley and America‘ may well be Bono’s most embarrassing attempt at poetry, yet it is redeemed by the chilling and wonderful ‘Bad‘, a two-chord elegy for an addict that is stunning in its control and mastery. Similarly, the wet, shimmering textures of the title track, the charging ‘A Sort of Homecoming’, and the surging Martin Luther King, Jr. tribute ‘Pride (In the Name of Love)‘ are all remarkable, ranking among U2’s very best music, making the missteps that clutter the remainder of the album somewhat forgivable.
Oh, and did you know that the actual recording of the album was done in part at Slane Castle? However, the castle on the album is cover is actually that of Moydrum Castle, located just outside the town of Athlone, County Westmeath, Ireland.
Take that knowledge to your next Music Trivia Night!