Quick Review (LP): All That You Can’t Leave Behind by U2


U2
All That You Can’t Leave Behind
Interscope; 2000

My Rating: B (72/100)

Best Tracks: "Beautiful Day", "Stuck In A Moment That You Can’t Out Of", "Walk On", "In A Little While"

After Pop, U2 makes a pop record.

NOTES

  • I can remember listening to "Beautiful Day" back in 2000 and thinking "They’re back!!!"
  • "Beautiful Day" is such a great song. It’s a bit overplayed radio-wise, but it’s deserving of that status.
  • I really love the transition from the second bridge to the song’s conclusion. The Edge’s guitar work there is brilliant.
  • Sure, the video is overwrought, but, c’mon, it just makes sense to have huge jets taking off over the head of U2.
  • "Stuck In A Moment" was one of my initial favorites. It’s sort of an R&B tune isn’t it?
  • Also, I saw Bono totally butcher the words to "Stuck In A Moment" in Indianapolis in 2001. Ironic.
  • Yes, "Elevation" does contain some ridiculous lyrics, but sue me, I like it.
  • My wife once had "Elevation" as her ring tone. So, yeah, someone would call and we’d hear Bono yell "A mole! Diggin’ in a hole!"
  • While I do love "Walk On", gotta say, the promos for the Friends finale almost ruined it for me. Man, they wouldn’t stop playing that song!!!
  • Seriously though, "Walk On" is prime U2. Beautiful melody, great guitar line, an all around feel good track.
  • "Kite" is a pretty gorgeous song, but something has always seemed a bit off about it to me. I like Bono’s inspiration for the tune though. Touching.
  • The last few lyrics of "Kite" have always seemed a little awkward to me.
  • "In A Little While" is a personal favorite. It’s another cut I could see being performed by an old school soul singer.
  • "Wild Honey" is the cutest thing they’ve done since "Sweetest Thing." It’s a sleeper.
  • Given the subject matter and the lyrical content, "Peace On Earth" strikes me as a hybrid of "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and John Lennon’s "Imagine."
  • Very moving when he lists the names of the victims of the Omagh bombing.
  • While unusual, I dig the tones The Edge got out of his guitar on ATYCLB. See "When I Look At The World."
  • While I do like "New York", it does seem like it could have gone a little farther.
  • "Grace" feels like an afterthought, but it’s actually underrated.
  • It’s a return to form in certain ways, but U2 never really sounded this poppy and urban before. This is soul-pop the way only U2 could do it.
  • I think the concept here is leaving the past behind. Appropriate for U2 after Pop almost relegated them to the realm of has-beens. It may not be a critical favorite, but this is a solid, forward-looking album. Bono was fond of saying that they were reapplying for the job of world’s best band with this record. In terms of popularity, I think they got the job.
  • ATTRIBUTES
    Cohesion (5/5)
    Concept (5/5)
    Consequence (5/5)
    Consistency (3/5)
    Songs (4/5)

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