Bri Blahg… U2’s Flat Line On The Horizon

23 02 2009

by Brian Phillips (@BrianBlahg)

The story goes that an Aussie online music vendor accidentally started selling the new U2 album early. Soon the net was awash with “No Line On The Horizon.” Surrendering to the leakers, the band today put the record up on their Myspace to stream in its entirety. Above you’ll note the cover. I keep staring at it hoping that a good U2 album will bob to the surface.

I’m growing tired of the U2 pre-release bait and switch. Rolling Stone will do a breathless piece reporting The Edge laying down some vicious guitar shredding whilst Bono furiously conjures lyrics on a wine stained cocktail napkin. Producers Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois are in the control room meanwhile bringing form to U2’s magic pixie dust. It would be nice if it were all true (or even half). Sadly “No Line On The Horizon” is as awful as you can imagine; a truly dull and dimwitted record.

“I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight” will go down as the band’s dumbest song since that mumbling thing The Edge did on Zooropa. “Every beauty needs to go out with an idiot?” Unless that lyric is about Chris Martin of Coldplay it doesn’t work. And what about Coldplay? Brian Eno has been working with them too, and to save time he’s apparently encouraging U2 to sound like them. There’s something even more disturbing here though. “No Line On The Horizon” makes me think of records made while U2 were reeling off “War,” “The Unforgettable Fire” and “Joshua Tree.” I’m talking Simple Minds here, or for God sakes Paul Young. (Don’t know who Paul Young was? exactly…)

“No Line On The Horizon” sounds tired and lazy to me. Bloodless, gutless, pointless.

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