U2 has a new song out in anticipation of their album being released next month. Get ready for the onslaught! The video is available on MySpace this time, probably chosen because the service has the youngest, most independent musicians on it. U2′s participation thereby reminds us they were young and innocent once and how much they conjure the pre-Joshua Tree image is usually directly proportional to how essential their new music is.
The video is incredible looking, as the band romps through a collage of images, as if influenced by Roy Lichtenstein and James Rosenquist. Seems like they are headed towards the Pop/Zooropa – “cooked” version of U2 (i.e., incorporating new trends, being electronic instead of playing instruments). I like the raw version better, which is what the last two albums were, but at the same time, Unforgettable Fire is my favorite of theirs, and it’s where they were first exposed to “treatments,” recording in a castle, etc.
I guess if you are in a studio with Eno and Lanois for two years, some weird stuff can happen. Lanois made a movie, did a solo album and toured in the middle of it, and even Eno went a little nuts with his whole Israel rap.
This could just be “Numb” or “Discotheque” — an attempt to put out a weird, attention-grabbing song in anticipation of a “real” single, but it’s no coincidence that there is no iPod or VW commercial attached to “Get On Your Boots.” It sounds like a misfire.
Incidentally, U2 is opening the Grammy® Awards with this song tonight — another sign of their considerable clout. Look for more opportunities that are bigger than the song deserves in the coming weeks.