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Experiencing U2's Songs of Experience
Episode 226 • Published Dec 01, 2017

A quick chat about U2’s new album, Songs of Experience, that was released today.

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Transcription of Episode

[00:00:00] Chris: Hello welcome to Daily(ish) number episode number 225 for December 1st 2017. It is uh minus 7 feels like minus 13 outside but this is not a weather podcast. It is however U2 Fan party of sorts and today’s Songs of Experience day, it’s the U2’s new album has been released so in the world out on the iTunes click the link in the show notes if you’d like to buy it, which you should.

It’s a I’m about halfway through the album so far got interrupted by a little helper who’s sitting beside me listening to some of the music on her air quotes her phone and headphones, and there’s going to be two parts. I’m going to stop recording and finish listening to [00:01:00] it and then come back to finish recording after I finished listening to it if that makes any sense so no time will transpire for you, but potentially 45 minutes, two hours, who knows?

I’m just going to apologize for skipping yesterday. I everybody can get a full refund on their coupons their Cyber Monday coupons because I missed yesterday’s recording for some reason I. I just got busy with work and stuff and so didn’t get around to hitting the record button on yesterday’s Daily(ish). I hope you’ll forgive me and move on move forward.

Alright. I’ll be back after I finished listening

Bono: because this is a lot of U2 albums out there. Why would anyone want another one?

Chris: Alright I’m back having listened to the new album Songs of Experience, and I won’t bore you with a whole bunch of details right now. They’ll be a atU2 podcast coming next week where we do a full-on review discussion of the album they’ll be maybe a blog post I’m going to look look to writing sort of reviewing the [00:02:00] album on my blog Chrisenns.com and and then I tweeted a bunch of while I was listening to it as well so twitter.com/iChris if you’re curious about my thoughts.

I will say if you’ve heard any of the singles or stuff they’ve released Get out of your own way, American Soul, You’re the best thing about me, and The Blackout are the four you may have heard in some form or another. The rest of the album is similar, but definitely has some different sounds than what you’re at least whatever you it might associate with U2.

There’s a whole lot of different sort of sounds sonically sounds theme thematically the whole album really is feels like a cohesive unit in the way that they haven’t really had since I don’t know. Achtung Baby, Zooropa era it’s not that like not the same theme as those albums, but just sort of unifying vibe or theme that you get from listening the [00:03:00] record or when you listen to the record.

The standout track is actually one that’s on the deluxe edition lights of home the st. Peter’s string version to me is I’m sure there’s other songs that’ll grow on me. Don’t send me hate mail if you’re a U2 fan, but it’s a there’s lights of home is a track number two on the actual album and different version of it on the deluxe edition and that’s the one I think that is going to stick with me the most so far anyways, but yeah, they do a lot of interesting callbacks, to like obvious callbacks to the previous album Songs of Innocence in a way that is similar to what like a movie producer Edgar Wright or somebody movie maker that might do or literary folks would do maybe poetry that kind of thing and it’s based on sort of the idea of, I’m going to butcher it all here, but William Blake’s book of poetry Songs of Innocence songs experience Etc songs of ascent is the next one. And so it’s a common [00:04:00] thing in that sense and but something that I at least from what we’ve seen from U2 fans, it’s kind of like causing a bit of concentration and stuff. where like a whole chorus or type of a course from a previous song is completely included in this next one so it rings of like laziness or something like that, I guess and to some people but to me to my ears anyways, it’s it’s a brilliant way of invoking and referencing previous work without within a new context, I guess, and sort of reminding you of where they were and where they are now and then presumably someday you know if there’s been talk anyways of a third album in this series songs of ascent would come out and sort of complete that idea, so yeah, there’s a lot of… It’s a it’s a fairly heavy album if you dig into the lyrics and the liner notes that Bono wrote going into a lot of explanation of it. There’s a reference a lot of reference in in the liner notes [00:05:00] and in his sort of talk and promotion of the album of this incident a health and related incident that kind of took them to the edge almost as it were, no pun intended, and and how that influenced where the songs and the lyrics are came from and what they changed to after that happened - last Christmas is sort of the around the time frame for it it seems -and so yeah, there’s Life Death Joy. Hope love all those kind of themes that that penetrate a lot of way U2 writes about and sings about but in a way that feels very personal and and like it’s like he has said, Bono has said kind of like going on and writing this as if it’s the last album he had to write or if he wasn’t even to be here to hear it being heard played etc by friends and families, so there I ended up doing a quick little mini review.

I think it’s worth getting if you hated Songs of Innocence for some reason uh it’s completely different. Don’t sonically anyways musically. It’s it’s it’s a U2 record for sure, but don’t [00:06:00] use the past album as an indicator of this album, and if you haven’t been a fan for a while, I think it’s it’s different enough that there’s they take enough risks I guess musically, too, take a chance on it yourself if stuff like How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb or Beautiful Day that kind of era of you to was kind of like too poppy, too Top 40 hit grabbing or attention-seeking kind of music this, I think has elements of it that are different and pull you in a different direction. Plus Adam Clayton the bass player is phenomenal throats in various ways not just like obvious you know funky riff kind of stuff, but just in terms of the low end bass pedals and stuff that he’s doing lots of fun to be had there especially if you’ve got it on a good stereo so or headphones or whatever right to go back and listen again, and I hope you have a great day.

Be sure to pick up the album link is in the show notes.

[00:07:00] And if you’re a U2 fan and want to check out more what hardcore U2 fans are saying about it. Be sure to follow the U2 podcast goodstuff.fm/atU2 is where you can find all the details on that show if you’re not already listening.

Ok. Hope you have a great day. Bye.