Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?

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Smee

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Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« on: September 13, 2020, 11:33:55 AM »
I got to thinking. U2 last album didnt sell so many copies, yet, i think was still in the top ten selling albums of that year. That is consistant with much of their career.
Live gigs is where u2 seem to be most popular. BUT, i got to wondering, how many of the people in the crowd are out and out u2 fans vs casual fans, catching a legendary band in concert. They are still filling stadiums round the world, on the scale that perhaps only the Rollings Stones manage to do.
From my own experience, u2 were at their most popular, around The Joshua Tree time. Id say the band has decreased in popularity this past 20 years?
What are your thoughts?
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riffraff

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2020, 11:40:38 AM »
They're still the biggest band in my little world.
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Smee

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2020, 11:48:40 AM »
I hear you riffy. U2 are still the BEST band around. I just wanst sure about being the biggest? Nowadays, popularity isnt about physical sales  or gig attendance. It all seems to be measured by amounts of streams you can get. On that front, u2 seem to way down the pecking order
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riffraff

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2020, 11:56:29 AM »
Yeah, they are probably far from being "the biggest" in today's world.
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So Cruel

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2020, 12:01:46 PM »
Nope.

There really arenít many bands itching for the title right now as rock music isnít at the forefront of popularity. U2 hasnít made any music thatís relevant to the general public since 2005. The biggest bands are the legacy acts, but U2 isnít the biggest legacy act, the Stones are. Stones can play a Stadium when they want to, for U2 to hit Stadiums now itís playing a nostalgia album.
Definitive U2 Top 10: 1. One, 2. Bad, 3. With Or Without You, 4. Running to Stand Still, 5. So Cruel, 6. Ultraviolet, 7. I Still Havenít Found What Iím Looking For, 8. Hawkmoon 269, 9. Red Hill Mining Town, 10. Luminous Times

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2020, 12:47:29 PM »
Measuring by live show ticket sales seems to be the metric that decides who the biggest bands are these days, but I would say that everything has been reset due to the pandemic.

Probably streaming service metrics are the more accurate gauge.

If weíre pretending itís business as usual, Iíd say they havenít been the biggest band in the world since All That You Canít Leave Behind, even with their big live show numbers.


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SwimmingSorrows

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2020, 12:57:16 PM »
Vertigo was their last true smash.  Their biggest hit of the last 15 years is a brief feature on a Kendrick Lamar track.  However, that song has 159 million Spotify streams, making it U2's 6th most streamed song on Spotify, ahead of Pride and Streets, and ahead of Vertigo for that matter. 

Spotify also lists how many monthly listeners an artist has.  U2 have 15.5 million monthly listeners.  That puts them in 210th place among all artists.

They are about in the middle when compared to the big indie bands of the past 10 years.  The Arctic Monkeys have about 14 million.  The 1975 have roughly 10 million.  twenty one pilots and Fall Out Boy both have about 17 million.  Panic at the Disco have about 20 million.

The artist with the highest monthly listeners figure right now is The Weeknd with 65 million.  The biggest band in the world by this metric is Maroon 5 with 46.6 million.

U2 are also about in the middle when it comes to big legacy acts.  They are ahead of David Bowie and Led Zeppelin, who are sitting at around 14 million and 14.5 million.  The Rolling Stones are at 19 million, and The Beatles are at 23 million.  The biggest legacy act is Queen with 33 million monthly listeners.  They are level pegging with Imagine Dragons, who are probably second to Maroon 5 in terms of monthly listeners for a band. 

These stats aren't the absolute answer to who is the biggest band on the planet, but they are interesting to consider.

I am reluctant to call either Imagine Dragons and Maroon 5 the biggest band on the planet tbh.  Both have had some big hits in recent years, but I think their fanbases are a mile wide and an inch deep.  Most music fans don't like them, and they are in about the same league as bands like the Arctic Monkeys when it comes to concert attendance.  All 3 of the bands I just mentioned sell out arenas but do not play stadiums.

One band does spring to mind though.  They have a massive and passionate fanbase, a monthly listener count of 27 million, which is pretty high up there, and they've had a pretty big hit recently.  They also happen to be leading the Billboard Artist 100 right now.  That band is BTS.
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laoghaire

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2020, 01:32:37 PM »
The stat about monthly listeners interested me. Where do some other legacy artists fall, if you don't mind checking?

I'm guessing plenty of other legacy rock artists score much higher. Queen for sure. Pink Floyd. The Beatles. Led Zeppelin.

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imaginary friend

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2020, 02:17:18 PM »
This last decade, it's been Metallica.

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Magnificence

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2020, 02:40:53 PM »
imagine dragons and maroon 5 are terrible

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John Galt

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2020, 03:08:36 PM »
Nope.

There really arenít many bands itching for the title right now as rock music isnít at the forefront of popularity. U2 hasnít made any music thatís relevant to the general public since 2005. The biggest bands are the legacy acts, but U2 isnít the biggest legacy act, the Stones are. Stones can play a Stadium when they want to, for U2 to hit Stadiums now itís playing a nostalgia album.

Ed Sheeran, Adele, Beyonce and Taylor Swift can and do fill stadiums.

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laoghaire

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2020, 03:25:04 PM »
They aren't bands.

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John Galt

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2020, 03:26:59 PM »
They're acts and they're not considered legacy acts.


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MPare1966

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2020, 03:38:27 PM »
Vertigo was their last true smash.  Their biggest hit of the last 15 years is a brief feature on a Kendrick Lamar track.  However, that song has 159 million Spotify streams, making it U2's 6th most streamed song on Spotify, ahead of Pride and Streets, and ahead of Vertigo for that matter. 

Spotify also lists how many monthly listeners an artist has.  U2 have 15.5 million monthly listeners.  That puts them in 210th place among all artists.

They are about in the middle when compared to the big indie bands of the past 10 years.  The Arctic Monkeys have about 14 million.  The 1975 have roughly 10 million.  twenty one pilots and Fall Out Boy both have about 17 million.  Panic at the Disco have about 20 million.

The artist with the highest monthly listeners figure right now is The Weeknd with 65 million.  The biggest band in the world by this metric is Maroon 5 with 46.6 million.

U2 are also about in the middle when it comes to big legacy acts.  They are ahead of David Bowie and Led Zeppelin, who are sitting at around 14 million and 14.5 million.  The Rolling Stones are at 19 million, and The Beatles are at 23 million.  The biggest legacy act is Queen with 33 million monthly listeners.  They are level pegging with Imagine Dragons, who are probably second to Maroon 5 in terms of monthly listeners for a band. 

These stats aren't the absolute answer to who is the biggest band on the planet, but they are interesting to consider.

I am reluctant to call either Imagine Dragons and Maroon 5 the biggest band on the planet tbh.  Both have had some big hits in recent years, but I think their fanbases are a mile wide and an inch deep.  Most music fans don't like them, and they are in about the same league as bands like the Arctic Monkeys when it comes to concert attendance.  All 3 of the bands I just mentioned sell out arenas but do not play stadiums.

One band does spring to mind though.  They have a massive and passionate fanbase, a monthly listener count of 27 million, which is pretty high up there, and they've had a pretty big hit recently.  They also happen to be leading the Billboard Artist 100 right now.  That band is BTS.

I think the Spotify metric is flawed, SS. Many older U2fans donít use that platform, like me for example. I think Spotify stats can be a good metric for current popular acts, but thatís about it.
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Achtung Baby

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Re: Are u2 still the biggest band on the planet?
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2020, 04:43:27 PM »
Probably not.  Rock isn't what it once was as a genre.  The band will also obviously be known more for the classics even though they still do make new music.  They arguably peaked in popularity as a studio band with The Joshua Tree.  As a live band, it was arguably with the 360 Tour.  They will always be my favourite band.  "Best" and "biggest" are much more subjective and cover the opinions of many.
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