brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014

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restofit

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We all thought Danger Mouse hadn't made any comment about U2 after the band finished SOI, well not exactly..

In August 2014 Broken Bells (DM and James Mercer's band) did a live session and interview with NPR's Sound Opinions show. (The show itself aired in November, go to about the 41 minute mark if you want to hear it in complete context:

https://www.soundopinions.org/show/467

One of the hosts, Jim DeRogatis, asked DM how he balances being in-demand as a perceived 'hitmaker' particularly with U2, and his own career as an avant-garde artist. This was DM's response:

"The thing is, you have to figure out: do you want to be celebrated or discovered? I think that you spend so much of your time at the beginning trying to be discovered, that once you start to be celebrated, you just want to keep that. And that’s boring. The sound of that is pretty boring."

"I think that if you want to be discovered, then that takes balls, it takes another risk, and you can lose a lot if you do that. But the sound of people holding on to what they have is usually not very good.”

Obviously, no one who hasn't heard the Danger Mouse sessions can really say what they sound like, and even if we all heard them I'm sure there would be a multiplicity of opinions about their value like with anything else. But it seems to me like they left more adventurous, ballsy stuff on the cutting room floor in favor of their hallmark sounds.







« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 06:11:32 PM by restofit »

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laoghaire

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Great find. Interesting.

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an tha

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"But it seems to me like they left more adventurous, ballsy stuff on the cutting room floor in favor of their hallmark sounds."

There would be a surprise!

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Shank Asu

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Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.

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Smee

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Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.

I firmly believe that Bono should have little say in what sound the band go for. he has a thing for acceptance from the Pop crowd. But he has an overpowering Influence.
I reckon that if it was left to the other 3, we wouldnt get drivel like The Best Thing and such like.
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Twilight

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We all thought Danger Mouse hadn't made any comment about U2 after the band finished SOI, well not exactly..

In August 2014 Broken Bells (DM and James Mercer's band) did a live session and interview with NPR's Sound Opinions show. (The show itself aired in November, go to about the 41 minute mark if you want to hear it in complete context: Yo

https://www.soundopinions.org/show/467

One of the hosts, Jim DeRogatis, asked DM how he balances being in-demand as a perceived 'hitmaker' particularly with U2, and his own career as an avant-garde artist. This was DM's response:

"The thing is, you have to figure out: do you want to be celebrated or discovered? I think that you spend so much of your time at the beginning trying to be discovered, that once you start to be celebrated, you just want to keep that. And that’s boring. The sound of that is pretty boring."

"I think that if you want to be discovered, then that takes balls, it takes another risk, and you can lose a lot if you do that. But the sound of people holding on to what they have is usually not very good.”

Obviously, no one who hasn't heard the Danger Mouse sessions can really say what they sound like, and even if we all heard them I'm sure there would be a multiplicity of opinions about their value like with anything else. But it seems to me like they left more adventurous, ballsy stuff on the cutting room floor in favor of their hallmark sounds.

I think that's oversimplifying it.

As an artist myself, I can say that it doesn't really come down to preferring "hallmark" over "ballsy". (Or "celebrated" over "discovered.") It's more unquantifiable than that. It's an ongoing exploration of what you know and what you still have to learn, and how to make them work ... according to your own sensibilities.

I've been at it long enough that I've developed a style. I know how to make a painting look like THAT. But I've also been at it long enough to know that I will never stop evolving. Not because I'm consciously trying to (except when I am :) ) but because I can't help it; evolution is the nature of art. Every painting you attempt changes the way you attempt the next one.

But that doesn't mean that every new direction I try is superior to the "old way" just because it's new. I can stick in the color orange over here, and yes, that's very exciting, but the composition as a whole falls apart unless I compliment it with that tried and true blue over there. The individual bits and pieces may be brilliant; but the whole is what matters. And if I have to toss out the new to make the whole work ... out it goes. To be saved for another day, if it's really valid. Sometimes new ideas are just that; new. Nothing else.

It also doesn't mean that if I fall back on the tried and true to make something work, I've stopped experimenting. Every painting is an experiment. I never copy myself; I can't, I've tried; they always fail, they have no life. But I can use what I already know to make something new but incomplete into something whole.

There are many people who are bored silly by the kind of work I do. There's others, fortunately, that think it's great. And there's others still that, every once in awhile, see more in a painting than I actually put there. I did one of my sister one time, and did the most traditional layout, color, brushstrokes, etc. I could muster, because I had no other goal than to make something pretty for her. But the response I got to it blew me away; people were talking about how emotional it was, how it drew them in, how it challenged them, how original it was. Who knew? I entered it in an art show and won a lot of money. It was a critical and commercial success!

And the next show I submitted it to, it was rejected.

So which show organizers got it right?
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Twilight

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Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.
Oh geez. There was a interview, somewhere, not too long ago, where Bono and Edge were saying what they were listening to. I'll see if I can find it.

ETA: just remembered, one was Cage the Elephant.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 02:31:47 PM by Twilight »
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Twilight

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I firmly believe that Bono should have little say in what sound the band go for. he has a thing for acceptance from the Pop crowd. But he has an overpowering Influence.
I reckon that if it was left to the other 3, we wouldnt get drivel like The Best Thing and such like.
I've heard the same kind of thing said elsewhere; only that person was referring to Larry. And I've seen more than one comment to the effect that The Edge has "stopped trying." The only person that seems avoid spitballs is Adam.

And a lot of comments could be interpreted to mean some fans think the band should have no say, the producer should make all the decisions.

All I'm saying is; be careful what you wish for. Passengers, anyone?
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laoghaire

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I consider Edge to be a Bono sycophant. Sorry.

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restofit

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Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.
Oh geez. There was a interview, somewhere, not too long ago, where Bono and Edge were saying what they were listening to. I'll see if I can find it.

ETA: just remembered, one was Cage the Elephant.


An interview a few years back I remember Bono saying he was a big fan of The Weeknd and Kendrick Lamar. Edge talked about Lamar as an innovator in today's music scene.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 06:20:42 PM by restofit »

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Twilight

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Re: brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014
« Reply #10 on: March 23, 2020, 06:36:46 PM »
Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.
Oh geez. There was a interview, somewhere, not too long ago, where Bono and Edge were saying what they were listening to. I'll see if I can find it.

ETA: just remembered, one was Cage the Elephant.

Well, I can't find the interview/s, but I found part of a list I made, probably thinking I'd check out the bands and see if I liked them. If I remember, the interviews went about 3-4 years back; here's what's on the list: Future Islands, Haim, Cage the Elephant, Teenage Fanclub, I Break Horses. I also saw where Edge  said he's a fan of Radiohead.

I consider Edge to be a Bono sycophant. Sorry.
Wow, that's harsh. :o Okay, but I'm not sure what I said to prompt that response.

An interview a few years back I remember Bono saying he was a big fan of The Weeknd and Kendrick Lamar. Edge talked about Lamar as an innovator in today's music scene.
Ah yes, I remember that too, thanks.
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restofit

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Re: brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014
« Reply #11 on: March 23, 2020, 06:44:43 PM »
Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.
Oh geez. There was a interview, somewhere, not too long ago, where Bono and Edge were saying what they were listening to. I'll see if I can find it.

ETA: just remembered, one was Cage the Elephant.

Well, I can't find the interview/s, but I found part of a list I made, probably thinking I'd check out the bands and see if I liked them. If I remember, the interviews went about 3-4 years back; here's what's on the list: Future Islands, Haim, Cage the Elephant, Teenage Fanclub, I Break Horses. I also saw where Edge  said he's a fan of Radiohead.

I consider Edge to be a Bono sycophant. Sorry.
Wow, that's harsh. :o Okay, but I'm not sure what I said to prompt that response.

An interview a few years back I remember Bono saying he was a big fan of The Weeknd and Kendrick Lamar. Edge talked about Lamar as an innovator in today's music scene.
Ah yes, I remember that too, thanks.

also I remember hearing recently that Adam is really into lcd soundsystem which pleases me immensely as they're probably my favourite group after U2.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 06:46:32 PM by restofit »

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Twilight

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Re: brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014
« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2020, 07:06:05 PM »
Nice, thanks!
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laoghaire

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Re: brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014
« Reply #13 on: March 23, 2020, 07:59:50 PM »
Sorry, I was replying to Smee. I think I had my reply queued up and then the Internet died and it submitted after other posts came in.

Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.

I firmly believe that Bono should have little say in what sound the band go for. he has a thing for acceptance from the Pop crowd. But he has an overpowering Influence.
I reckon that if it was left to the other 3, we wouldnt get drivel like The Best Thing and such like.

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The Edges Cat

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Re: brutally honest advice for U2 from Danger Mouse in radio interview 2014
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2020, 08:27:51 PM »
Interesting.  I'm curious what artists and sounds U2 finds inspiring for them now or if there's anything new at this point.

I firmly believe that The Edge should have little say in what sound the band go for. he has a thing for acceptance from the Pop crowd. But he has an overpowering Influence.
I reckon that if it was left to the other 3, we wouldnt get drivel like The Best Thing and such like.

Fixed that for you. See my quote. The full quote (I can't find it right now) Edge says he could give fans what they want, blow our minds sonically, but he's only interested in song writing. ;)

Bono has said he'd love to record like Zooropa again, and he'd love to make a balls-to-the-wall rock album (Glastonbury). Bono gets all the crap flung at him, but Edge deserves a bit more flak. It's not Bono who's still fucking around with the album when it's at the presser and ready to go.
« Last Edit: March 23, 2020, 08:34:34 PM by The Edges Cat »
The Edge: “[Eno] would love to see us making albums a bit more like [Zooropa]. Where we go, ‘You know what? We’re not going to second-guess any of this. Let’s just go for it.’”

U2 Fans: We'd all love to see that, Edge.