Despite the doom & gloom SOI/SOE are still their most complete records since POP

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restofit

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Don't let an-tha tell you otherwise..

Even with their flaws SOI & SOE are still more complete albums than anything post-1997.

For a start, they have the least skip-worthy tracks of the band's 21st century output:

Skip-worthy tracks per-album...

SOE (2): American Soul, The Showman.

SOI (2): Song For Someone, The Miracle.

NLOTH (4): Crazy, GOYB, SUC, WAS.

HTDAAB (3): LAPOE, One Step Closer, Yahweh.

ATYCLB (3): Peace On Earth, Wild Honey, Grace.

POP (1): Miami.

Of course, this is all subjective but that's my take on it.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2021, 10:06:06 PM by restofit »

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restofit

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Ranking the albums post-POP:

1. SOI/SOE (tie).
2. ATYCLB.
3. HTDAAB (if the sound engineering & mixing wasn't so appalling it would sit higher than ATYLCB).
4. NLOTH.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2021, 10:05:40 PM by restofit »

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MPare1966

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No.

BUT, when removing the crap and filler, you can have a very good double album of 16 songs, total time 68 minutes. Mine goes like this

First Chair. Last Call.

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restofit

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No.

BUT, when removing the crap and filler, you can have a very good double album of 16 songs, total time 68 minutes. Mine goes like this



Perhaps controversially, for me 'Love Is Bigger' is actually one of the stronger tracks on Songs of Experience.
 
Deep production, powerful melody and structure. Doesn't really sound like usual anthemic U2 in any sense & that's part of what's interesting about the impression it still manages to make.

The Blackout deserves to stay due to some innovative guitar work from The Edge, he adds some interesting sounds to the mix for once, the production lets the track down though.. particularly during that tub-thumping chorus!! it completely neuters the song.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2021, 11:55:44 PM by restofit »

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Achtung Baby

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I think Love Is Bigger... is a strong track as well.  It only loses me practically right at the end when the title is sung a few times.  The title seems too long for what they were trying to go for there.  I'd likely hesitate to say that it could almost rival AIWIY with a longer run time and guitar solo, but... I'd also agree that the studio version of The Blackout definitely loses something from that music video/live version heard initially.  There are definitely some quality moments found on the Songs Of I+e.
We Get To Carry Each Other

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Larry Lovebucket

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Given the competition - ATYCLB, Bomb and NLOTH - itís not difficult to record better material. For me, SOI is a total dud of a record, SOE less so. Iíll go for :

SLABT
Cedar wood Road
The Troubles
LIAWHL
The Little Things
Summer of Love
Landlady
RFD

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an tha

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.


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restofit

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 04:33:41 AM by restofit »

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Larry Lovebucket

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

The best bits of NLOTH are as good as POP. But song for song, POP is a consistently much better record. Plus POPMART was a great tour. 360 was fucking awful.

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restofit

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

The best bits of NLOTH are as good as POP. But song for song, POP is a consistently much better record. Plus POPMART was a great tour. 360 was fucking awful.

I would say Cedars is the only track from NLOTH that's POP quality. Even stuff like Moment Of Surrender is overblown and dramatasised, for one, it's too long and meanders for far too long, doesn't really go anywhere, and two (a common theme from NLOTH..) bono ruins the track with his scratchy overbearing vocals & atrocious lyrics.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 04:46:14 AM by restofit »

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an tha

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

NLOTH is indeed light years away from Pop's quality - no argument here, it is massively inferior IMO...

But those light years still in my book put it much, much closer to u2's best work than the absolute turds that came after it.

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Larry Lovebucket

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

The best bits of NLOTH are as good as POP. But song for song, POP is a consistently much better record. Plus POPMART was a great tour. 360 was fucking awful.

I would say Cedars is the only track from NLOTH that's POP quality. Even stuff like Moment Of Surrender is overblown and dramatasised, for one, it's too long and meanders for too long and two (a common theme on NLOTH) bono ruins the track with his scratchy overbearing vocals & atrocious lyrics.

I agree in part about MOS. Itís overlong and the generic singalong in the last 1/4 is just awful. I find some of the lyrics great and some ruin it. Even so I prefer listening to that than wake up dead man or do you feel loved from POP

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restofit

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

The best bits of NLOTH are as good as POP. But song for song, POP is a consistently much better record. Plus POPMART was a great tour. 360 was fucking awful.

I would say Cedars is the only track from NLOTH that's POP quality. Even stuff like Moment Of Surrender is overblown and dramatasised, for one, it's too long and meanders for too long and two (a common theme on NLOTH) bono ruins the track with his scratchy overbearing vocals & atrocious lyrics.

I agree in part about MOS. Itís overlong and the generic singalong in the last 1/4 is just awful. I find some of the lyrics great and some ruin it. Even so I prefer listening to that than wake up dead man or do you feel loved from POP

Woah, I've got to disagree with you there. For me, those two tracks are among the best on the album. So many layers. It's like a wonderful sonic-concoction.

Anyway, basically, I think POP is all production.

'Staring at the Sun' aside, I donít think there is a lot of good song-writing on the album. At the time I remember thinking that it sounded like they wrote all the songs in two days and then spent two years recording them. I am not a fan of words like 'over-produced' - it reminds me of that 'too many notes, sire' joke from Milos Forman's Amadeus.

But I feel like the production is so much better than the songwriting, unlike, say Achtung Baby, where I feel that they were perfectly balanced between first-rate song-writing and first-rate production.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 05:27:35 AM by restofit »

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Larry Lovebucket

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An Tha will tell you otherwise.

In his opinion SOI and SOE are shite - absolute garbage.

U2's best album post Pop even with the unholy trinity is for me NLOTH.

The only songs from SOI and SOE i'd even consider listening to now are SLABT and erm that is probably it....

Different strokes and all that of course.

NLOTH is light-years away from POP's quality. It's not even funny & it would be rather insulting to compare the two. POP is unequivocally their 3rd best record after AB & JT.. meanwhile NLOTH is lucky to even make the bottom 5!

It would be generous to put it above War & October.

an tha, that reminds me, I need to make that 'NLOTH is overrated' thread, I was meaning to get round to doing it last week but I forgot. thanks for reminding me!

The best bits of NLOTH are as good as POP. But song for song, POP is a consistently much better record. Plus POPMART was a great tour. 360 was fucking awful.

I would say Cedars is the only track from NLOTH that's POP quality. Even stuff like Moment Of Surrender is overblown and dramatasised, for one, it's too long and meanders for too long and two (a common theme on NLOTH) bono ruins the track with his scratchy overbearing vocals & atrocious lyrics.

I agree in part about MOS. Itís overlong and the generic singalong in the last 1/4 is just awful. I find some of the lyrics great and some ruin it. Even so I prefer listening to that than wake up dead man or do you feel loved from POP

Woah, I've got to disagree with you there. For me, those two tracks are among the best on the album. So many layers. It's like a wonderful sonic concoction.

Anyway, basically, I think POP is all production.

'Staring at the Sun' aside, I donít think there is a lot of good song-writing on the album. At the time I remember thinking that it sounded like they wrote all the songs in two days and then spent two years recording them. I am not a fan of words like 'over-produced' - it reminds me of that 'too many notes, sire' joke from Milos Forman's Amadeus.

But I feel like the production is so much better than the songwriting, unlike, say Achtung Baby, where I feel that they were perfectly balanced between first-rate song-writing and first-rate production.

POP is patchy for sure and the production is pretty dodgy. I think itís looked kindly upon because of the subsequent nosedive. Even so, they had balls and vision at that point which has since completely disappeared. Plus the tour rocked.

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restofit

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Given the competition - ATYCLB, Bomb and NLOTH - it's not difficult to record better material. For me, SOI is a total dud of a record, SOE less so.

SOI is my favorite (by far) of the 5 albums from the last twenty years. Songs like California, Iris, Cedarwood Road, Raised By Wolves, Sleep Like a Baby Tonight, This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now, The Troubles & The Crystal Ballroom are as energetic, melodic, and interesting as the band have been in ages. They also followed it up with a tour that was, I think, a far more coherent production than 360.

But U2 are their own worst enemies, and managed to spoil the era with 3 key mis-steps: Apple, Bono's accident, and (I think mentioned far too little) sending Bono and The Edge out on a ludicrous 'singer-songwriter..' promo tour which missed everything good about SOI. It was a *band* album, first & foremost, right at it's core.

Apple launch drama aside.. this was easily their best (post-1997) late-career work. Thematically tight, and bringing new blood in producers helped. A really good example how much a difference an inspired Bono brings to U2 albums, since The Edge (seemingly) just stopped trying after ATYCLB to mix things up (well, the majority of the time)..
« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 06:13:24 AM by restofit »