I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis

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guest28

I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« on: December 19, 2017, 05:52:07 PM »
2017, the year when my u2 fandom took its first ever dip.

Its been a strange old year for me, where u2 are concerned. First of all, my all time fave u2 song and album had been The Joshua Tree and One Tree hill and it has been like that for 30 yrs.
But having seen the TJT30th Anniversary Show, i kinda fell out of love with the album. I just felt the whole tour was bland. It didnt capture me at all. I had tickets to 2 shows in london. I ended up only going to the Joshua Tree segment of one of the shows. I left the gig after i had seen the whole Joshua Tree performed. I felt underwhelmed by some very bland versions of the songs i once adored.

Then came the lead up to the release of SoE. I pretty much disliked ALL the songs in the build up to the release. The album gets released, i find the album ok at best. There are about 6 songs i cant bear to listen to. And after only 10 days or so, I feel i have heard as much of the album as i want to hear. DOnt feel i would be too unhappy if i never heard it again.

Then came the BBC u2 special. Again, i felt underwhelmed by what i saw and heard. Ive been u2 mad, since 1982, yet this year, im finding myself having this dip. It is new to me and im not enjoying being a u2 fan so much now. Its not even as if it is a case of im all u2-ed out. I barely listen to them these days.

Its a very strange sensation. I almost feel as though i have had a bust up with a loved one.

Does this resonate with anyone out there? If so......did you get over it?

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guest4

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2017, 06:16:56 PM »
Ah, Smee...don't give up on them quite yet. No, I have never had the feelings about not caring for their music anymore. But, I DO know that many of us (including U2) are getting older. Our wants and needs change. Our outlook on life may change, and change drastically.
I lost touch with U2 for awhile back in the mid to late 80's for awhile...not by my own choice, but that's another story. I DID feel like I'd lost a loved one...so that part of your dilemma I can understand. I kept the music in my heart (of course the music was VERY different back then), and it helped me get through a very dark time in my life.
So, I guess what I might be saying is...keep the songs that you DO still enjoy in your heart. You might be surprised at what help this will be for you.

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guest94

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2017, 06:23:41 PM »
Yep, this happened to me to. It started seeping in around 2014 but the release of SOI brought me back. Then the election cycle just started getting nastier and the band couldn't resist putting down their fans on the right. That really put me off and, despite liking SOE, I don't foresee myself ever fully loving them the way I once did. It was a tough break but once it was over I've felt fine; it's getting over the initial "I've loved this band for 15 years and I don't know where to go" phase that's strange. After seeing Radiohead back in April they're my new favorite, hands down.

I just don't feel like a legitimate part of the fanbase anymore. It's like they're making music for only certain people and I'm not one of them. It's a strange realization.

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guest28

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #3 on: December 19, 2017, 06:26:00 PM »
Thats one good thing about this all....there are 13 u2 albums out there that i really enjoy. But its just been a strange year, starting with my fave u2 album and song of the last 30 yrs, getting knocked off the top spots....then the anti climatic tour, which i was so happy when it ended....and now, for the first time ever, im dealing with a disappointing u2 album.
As i say, i have NEVER felt this way in my life (regarding u2), they have always been such a hugely positive thing in my life.
I think maybe i have to go back and immerse myself in the albums i havent listened to in such a long time and remind myself of how great the band can be.
I think i just have to accept that SoE, from my point of view, is a write off

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Miami

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #4 on: December 19, 2017, 06:36:23 PM »
U2 are a band, they aren't a personal friend. You can fall out with them whenever you want, as often as you want, and no-one is ever going to be offended, so that's a good thing. It won't effect anyone else except for you.

So in the end it shouldn't feel like a big deal. I go long periods without listening to u2 but I don't feel guilty or ashamed. That's just life. It's not a good thing to overdose on just one thing (or band in this case).

You ain't a u2 fan anymore, there's nothing wrong with that. Just move on to other music.

I'll stick with buying their albums and concert tickets for as long as they offer elements of music that I like/love.

As for tonight at the BBC, they sounded really great with the orchestra and choir IMO, the three new songs especially.

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The Edges Cat

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #5 on: December 19, 2017, 06:42:41 PM »
And on the other side of the coin, there are people who are falling in love with U2 again.

Life moves on, we start new cycles. Happens with everything the older we get. I was obsessed with Haruki Murakami for a decade, and now I can't stand to read anything by him. We change. It's not an indictment on the artist, or even ourselves -- we all change.

TJT to Zooropa... that is U2 for me, because they were my formative years. I reconciled the fact I'm not an obsessive fan anymore a while ago, probably HTDAAB was the turning point. And I have to admit, listening to TJT to Zooropa, that period -- is the music really that good, or is it all member berries? Bit of both, but there's no denying I can listen to AB any time of the day mostly because it takes me back to a time when I was young, everything was a new discovery, and the future was a bright unknown full of possibilities.

Now I feel like An Tha's profile pic, and U2's music post ATYCLB isn't helping me de-age.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2017, 06:46:58 PM by The Edges Cat »
The Edge: ď[Eno] would love to see us making albums a bit more like [Zooropa]. Where we go, ĎYou know what? Weíre not going to second-guess any of this. Letís just go for it.íĒ

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

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DoYouFeelLoved

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #6 on: December 19, 2017, 07:00:47 PM »
I just don't feel like a legitimate part of the fanbase anymore. It's like they're making music for only certain people and I'm not one of them. It's a strange realization.
I feel the same way too, it is indeed a strange thought (and also kinda sad).
In a way, it's like they have moved on from a certain chunk of the fanbase, burning the bridges behind them in the process.
It's just the way it is. They've changed. Evolved (?)
No one stays in their 30s forever.
I am genuinely envious about the fans that can still find the recent material exciting.

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ShadowMac

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #7 on: December 19, 2017, 07:12:55 PM »
U2 are a band, they aren't a personal friend. You can fall out with them whenever you want, as often as you want, and no-one is ever going to be offended, so that's a good thing. It won't effect anyone else except for you.

So in the end it shouldn't feel like a big deal. I go long periods without listening to u2 but I don't feel guilty or ashamed. That's just life. It's not a good thing to overdose on just one thing (or band in this case).

You ain't a u2 fan anymore, there's nothing wrong with that. Just move on to other music.

I'll stick with buying their albums and concert tickets for as long as they offer elements of music that I like/love.

As for tonight at the BBC, they sounded really great with the orchestra and choir IMO, the three new songs especially.

This exactly. I like to call it phases. I'll have a U2 phase for several months and then I'll be burnt out on them to the point where I just need a break for many months. I'll listen to other bands, but I almost always end up revisiting AB at some point and I'm pulled back in. I'd say if you're burnt out on the music, you're burnt out on it and should take a break. Then when it feels right, give your favorite album of theirs a spin and see if the music grabs you again.

Even though I started this site and even though I remain an active member of it (and will always), I don't feel guilty for not listening to SoE every day or for pretty much taking a hiatus from their music for a bit. It happens. Even with bands you really love, at some point you just gotta take a break and listen to other stuff out there.

I don't dislike SoE, I happen to like it a lot. Lyrically, many of the songs grabbed me because I can relate to them with everything that has changed in my life the last year (even a song like "Landlady" grabs me because I know what it's like to have a SO who has carried me--not necessarily financially, but emotionally--a lot). Musically there's a lot to at least like, maybe even love. But again, I'm at the point where I want/need a break. So I'll take it and so should anyone else who needs one.

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guest4

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #8 on: December 19, 2017, 07:14:42 PM »
I just don't feel like a legitimate part of the fanbase anymore. It's like they're making music for only certain people and I'm not one of them. It's a strange realization.
I feel the same way too, it is indeed a strange thought (and also kinda sad).
In a way, it's like they have moved on from a certain chunk of the fanbase, burning the bridges behind them in the process.
It's just the way it is. They've changed. Evolved (?)
No one stays in their 30s forever.
I am genuinely envious about the fans that can still find the recent material exciting.
Don't be envious...just be glad you're still around, at least on this forum you are still a part of it all!
I'm taking the new album like this: okay, it's got a LOT of mellow stuff on it, with hints of really good rock jumping out now and then. Ok...I like it. A LOT. More with every listen.
Does that make me lucky? I don't know. I just know that they are older; I am older; things change. So, as a good friend of our has recently said...don't do, just be.

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JTNash

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #9 on: December 19, 2017, 07:21:16 PM »
I stop liking think I love when I get depressed.  With that said I do take U2 breaks I get sick of listing to the same stuff over and over.

I like the new stuff though
Plant a demon seed raise a flower of fire

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sashlon

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2017, 08:21:39 PM »
This all sounds like fan entitlement.
Let the past die. kill it if you have to.

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guest20

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2017, 12:15:23 AM »
I'm undergoing the same sort of crisis myself, Smee. It's disheartening enough to witness this downfall as a younger fan... but it must be harsher for you, knowing your stronger historical ties to the band.

It's typical of artists to release progressively shoddier music with age, but U2 is following this sentiment in an unprecedented manner. What artist has released an album as prolific as Achtung Baby only to eventually drop a deuce like Songs of Experience however many years down the line? It truly is disheartening.

U2 was the zeitgeist in the 90s. U2 did its part in creating the mainstream. Now the band mimics its contemporaries and writes off of cliches and platitudes.

Achtung Baby, Zooropa, and Pop are easily some of the greatest albums that I have ever heard. No other records can compare sonically. There are some albums that I enjoy to a similar degree, but none that can truly elicit the same euphoric feelings from me. Coincidentally, these were some of the first records that I ever listened to. Unfortunately, nothing can match the bar that they set.

I listen to a plethora of other groups, but none can match U2 in its prime. There is this intangible facet to U2 that is simply indescribable... maybe it's that unique mixture of talent and luck that, when coming from a genuine place, makes the band's music feel so relatable and just comprehensive enough.

I've been harping on this a bit much now... time to enjoy some Achtung Baby.  :)

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So Cruel

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2017, 12:44:44 AM »
Iíve come to accept U2 are not close to peak form any more, on recordings and as a live act.

I enjoyed the JT show I saw, more then I&E which I was pretty disappointed with, but while the JT show was enjoyable, it wasnít great or special. My buddy said to me as we left ďthat certainly wasnít worth $300Ē. It comes down to Bono in my opinion. He is a shadow of his former live self, both in terms of voice and energy. During the JT show he stood in one place for many songs and his voice just isnít that great anymore, especially live. Heís getting old and has had health issues. Sucks but thatís reality.

For SOI and SOE, there are some real gems (Sleep like a Baby, Love is All..., Litttle Things, Landlady) but there are also a lot of lacklustre songs as well. Iím happy they are still putting music out and Iím really enjoying about half the albums. They arenít great like they were in their prime, but thereís some really solid material.

My suggestion Smee is to curb your expectations and if there are a few songs on SOE you like then enjoy those ones. Maybe take a page out of Exiles book and create your own playlist. You can combine the best songs from SOI and SOE and create 1 damn good 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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Aviastar

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Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2017, 08:18:31 AM »
I had a "mini" breakup with U2 around 1997-1999. I still listened to there old stuff during that time, but I just stopped following the band for a while. Pop did not interest me at all - I felt they had strayed so far from their roots of rock & roll and the Discotheque video just sealed it for me.  I was 18 - 20 during that time and had other things to distract me with (college, girls, parties, booze, bad grades...not neccesarily in that order). I came back to the group with the release of ATYCLB, though there was a bit of a dip in my interest level around Bomb.

To this day I can't really get into late 90s U2. I have the album, I listen to it very sporadically. I love the song Please and Gone and IGWSHA and WUDM but for me it's not the same band as the one I fell in love with listening to War, TUF, TJT and R&H (which actually was my favorite album when I was a kid and probably the one I spent the most time with). Where AB was a rewarding reachable stretch for me, Zooropa was barely fingertip reachable and the payoff was not as great...and Pop was just...not within grasp.

I would say going through phases of liking/not liking U2 is probably natural. Perhaps because of their varied career and their ability to shift directions a bit...and their desire to follow popular trends. If they kept making variations of TUF, TJT, and R&H for 30 years I would have LOVED it...but I know that they would not have been nearly as popular for as long...and probably would have run out of steam in 1995 or so.

Maybe you'll get back into them at some point but I would say don't abandon them entirely.  I nearly did 20 years ago and I think that maybe I'd like Pop a bit better if I had given it more of a chance/been a little more open-minded.
« Last Edit: December 20, 2017, 08:24:32 AM by Aviastar »
Hold on, people! The man's talking about waste management. That affects the whole damn planet.

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guest87

Re: I think im having a Mid Life u2 Crisis
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2017, 08:26:33 AM »
I can't disagree with this famous general observation from Trainspotting about ageing.  (I mean it applies to Trainspotting 2 as well.)

Sick Boy: It's certainly a phenomenon in all walks of life.

Mark "Rent-boy" Renton: What do you mean?

Sick Boy: Well, at one time, you've got it, and then you lose it, and it's gone forever. All walks of life: George Best, for example. Had it, lost it. Or David Bowie, or Lou Reed...

Mark "Rent-boy" Renton: Some of his solo stuff's not bad.

Sick Boy: No, it's not bad, but it's not great either. And in your heart you kind of know that although it sounds all right, it's actually just shite.