Sunday, February 15, 2009

Take Me Higher

Christ. It's been OVER A YEAR since anyone last posted on these here Catalogues.

Le roi round these parts, and myself, have been heavily involved in a hockey blog for the past year. You can check it out here. I'm also writing a blog about culture and politics that may not go anywhere, really; if you want to check it out, it's here.

Now then. In an effort to get the Catalogues going again, I figured I'd talk about the impending new album from U2, No Line on the Horizon.

All the noises coming from Hanover Quays have been very encouraging: Eno and Lanois producing, a globe-trotting recording schedule (Morocco, London, Dublin, south of France) reminiscent of Achtung Baby and POP. Not to say that No Line will be anything near the level of those two albums (POP is a criminally underrated, if slightly flawed, masterpiece; Achtung is simply one of the greatest albums ever made); but if reports like this article in the Guardian are any indication, we have an experimental and interesting album to look forward to.

Neither of those adjectives could be applied to U2's last two outings. Don't get me wrong: I did really like All That You Can't Leave Behind. That was a truly moving, soulful album with great melodies, as bright and clear and filled with summer light as that picture of the band at Charles de Gaulle Airport on the cover. I'll never forget the first time I hear "Beautiful Day" on the radio: to me, it was one of those rare songs that made everything around it in the playlist seem horrifically bland and stupid. I didn't think it sounded like the "classic" 80's U2; to me, it sounded wonderfully modern and new, something entirely fresh and different. A pop song for the 21st century.

How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb wasn't so interesting. In fact, I think it's a pretty dull, and at time embarassing, album. Not a fan.

No Line on the Horizon seems to promise a better time. I can't wait.

No comments: