betz.zoo ([email protected])
Sat, 22 Aug 1998 17:41:53 -0400
I was on the Rolling Stone site and found this about U2.
"With their third album. War, U2 have found just such a perspective and
with it, have generated their most fulfilling work yet. War makes for
impressive listening, but more important, it deals with a difficult subject
in a sensible way. That subject is the sectarian strife in Northern
Ireland, or what the Irish call "the troubles." U2 are not the first group
to play soldiers with this topic; Belfast's Stiff Little Fingers have dealt
with the problem explicitly, the Clash somewhat more obliquely. But no one
has caught the paradox between stance and action so accurately.
"Sunday Bloody Sunday," which opens the album, apparently addresses Bloody
Sunday, a 1972 incident in which British paratroopers killed thirteen
civilians in an illegal civil-rights demonstration in Londonderry. As an
acoustic guitar and a sizzling hi-hat build tension, vocalist Bono Vox
sings, "I can't believe the news today . . . . " The band slips into some
lush, sustained chords as he wonders, "How long? How long must we sing this
song?" then jumps back into a militant, jagged dance beat.
It's great drama, and it lends a certain amount of credence to the song's
wistful chorus, "Tonight, we can be as one. Tonight!" But Vox tips his hand
when he sings the urgent disclaimer, "I won't heed the battle call/It puts
my back up, puts my back up against the wall."
What Vox and the band are saying, then, is that it's pointless to take
irresponsible risks when confronting irresponsible authority - but one must
still take some sort of stance.
Unlike the Clash, who wrestle with imperialist foreign policy, or the Gang
of Four, who try to transfer a Marxist dialectic to the dance floor, U2
don't pretend to have the answers to the world's troubles. Instead, they
devote their energies to letting us know that they are concerned and to
creating an awareness about those problems. And not only is that
refreshing, but it makes sense, because U2 understand that it's the
gesture, not the message, that counts."...etc
"For once, not having all the answers seems a bonus." (RS 392)
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* * * * *
The part I love is the line "U2 don't pretend to have the answers to the
world's troubles. Instead, they devote their energies to letting us know
that they are converned as to creating an awareness about those problems !
! ! ! !
Can we all get along ?? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
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