I found a discussion online regarding U2’s upcoming record and No Line On The Horizon. After reading my reply I thought it might be a good blog post, so here we go…
I’ve grown to really like No Line on the Horizon (NLOTH). It may not be U2’s best record but they took chances and changed things up and that’s what is exciting about U2. They’re one of the few bands that have figured out how to avoid using the “hit” formula and still make amazing music. The end result is that we don’t get bored with U2 because no two albums sound alike and I think they are intentional about that.
Admittedly, after hearing NLOTH for the first time I was thought to myself “oh no… what have they done!” I did not connect with it right away, with the exception of “Crazy Tonight” thanks to those opening guitar notes with that distinctive Edge tone which hooked me right away.
A radio hit is the goal of most bands, but I was surprised that the four lads or anyone else for that matter thought U2 would get a charting hit off this record. Hello? This is a generation where the likes of Justin Bieber, Lil’ Wayne and Taylor Swift rule the musical roost and folks pay hundreds of dollars to watch a DJ on stage twist some knobs and push some faders (yes I know it’s not that simple, but you get my point).
So no matter how great the next U2 record is, I think they’ll be hard-pressed to get a radio “hit.” But that won’t be a reflection on U2, their music or their relevancy. It’s more commentary on the state of the current music scene. In the prophetic words of The Who… “Rock is dead they say / Long live rock!”
That said, I will buy the new U2 record the day it is released! And I will either love it right away or learn to love it.
I will sit down with my guitars, Vox AC30 and effects and start learning each new song, obsessing over my tone and excited to get some of the new songs on UZoo’s song list.
And the day U2 tour tickets become available, I will take advantage of my U2.com membership pre-sale benefit. I’ll sit on the G.A. line and make some new “line-buddies.” We’ll talk about past shows, the latest album and start looking forward to the next record.
And the cycle will continue ’til death do us part.