Is it wrong that I’m happy that Cal’s not in the Rose Bowl? Oh well, I’m happy. I’m not into the 2nd place Pac-10 team playing in the Rose anyway. You should have to earn your way in. But whatever, Stanford sucks so who really cares anyway.

For no particular reason, my 5 favorite U2 songs. In honor of Dave, the number of songs on my top 5 list is not equal to 5. The cool thing would be to list obscure songs, to say like I love Salome from their Zoo TV Tour promo CD. But all the ones I like are all fairly well known. C’est la vie.

  1. Pride (In The Name Of Love) – My fave, the quintessential U2 song. Simple but interesting chords (the same 4 chords pretty much the entire song. Two of those are E and A, open strings on the bass, and often in concert Adam Clayton takes his left hand completely off the bass while picking his lines as if to emphasize how easy the song is. That kills me.), quintessential the Edge (his name is the Edge, not Edge, so I’m sticking with it no matter how grammatically awful it sounds) guitar delay, anthemic vocals, pseudo religious, somewhat bombastic, and ultimately indecipherable lyrics.

    I mean, seriously, what is this song about? Jesus? MLK Jr.? What do they have to do with pride? And what the heck does pride have to do with the name of love? Absolutely no clue. But dang, I love this song. Passion and energy. If I recall correctly, the tempos are totally different on the Unforgettable Fire and Rattle and Hum versions. I think I prefer the Unforgettable Fire version.

  2. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – More anthemic pseudo religious vocals. I love this song because it communicates such longing. I also like it because it uses less is more guitar wise, just sparse delayed guitars. Good stuffs.
  3. Elevation – I’m not exactly sure why I like this song so much, it just has this energy. Seriously, I’m shocked it wasn’t more popular than it was. It didn’t even make their 2nd best of album. But I dunno, I love it. Like I mentioned, you have to see their performance of this song on SNL with Val Kilmer. Incredible energy. People were about to jump out of the balcony.
  4. Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me – I just find this song really interesting and captivating. It’s off the Batman Forever soundtrack. (Also has Kiss From A Rose by Seal, another great song.) I love the vibe of this song, kind of exotic and swirling. Another song I don’t think gets enough respect.
  5. One – Something about this song feels healing to me. I’ve heard the story of how this song came about and it’s pretty interesting. Something about Bono wanted them to record this album in Berlin to catpure the vibe of the times in that city, and things were going very very badly, then one session they come up with this song and it kind of brings them together. That comes through in the song, I think.
  6. All I Want Is You – Adrian I think doesn’t understand why I like this song. But it’s a great melody, and most importantly, it’s an understated U2 song, which is a nice contrast to their normal anthemic style. Something about that resonates with me. So many of their songs are so overwhelming and bombastic, this is a nice song that’s almost conversational. It doesn’t fit on the Reality Bites soundtrack though. A great soundtrack.
  7. Where The Streets Have No Name – An amazing song, it’s like the perfect introductory song to basically anything in life. Start with silence, then sweeping keyboard, then a moody delayed electric playing in 6/8, then doing a brilliant transition to energetic 4/4. Is it possible to hear this song and by the end not be totally up? That’s impressive. In concert it’s also a fascinating study on the musical power of U2. Larry Mullen Jr. and Adam Clayton pretty much define “driving”, and that’s evident in this song, so the Edge in the chorus just needs to add sparse stuff for flavor. It’s not easy for bass and drums to carry a song by itself without feeling totally empty, so the interplay with them and the Edge’s playing is educational.