By: Pat O'Brien
For maximum effect, read this while listening to the new U2 album (you have it, check your iTunes).
Let me start by saying I don’t want to be doing this. As I type these words, a man I’ve never seen before is holding a gun to the side of my head demanding that I review the new U2 album, Songs of Innocence. I don’t know who this man is or how he got into my house; all I know is that I don’t want to die. Not today and not for fucking U2. I have a wife and a three-year-old daughter so I am going to do exactly as he says.
OK so it’s playing now, the first song. Some shit about Joey Ramone ‘ I think it’s the one they played at the Apple conference. Fuck man, I don’t know. What can you even say about this shit? Oh god he keeps jabbing the gun into my temple, screaming “Review! Review!” OK let’s see ‘ there’s sort of a Coldplay vibe I guess, which is like, pretty redundant for U2 to be imitating Coldplay ‘ Coldplay is already like watered-down Radiohead and this is like watered down Coldplay ‘ maybe with like some Marilyn Manson sprinkled in there? I don’t know man, please don’t fucking kill me hdgggddghhhhhh
He says I’m going too negative ‘ “Less Pitchfork and more Entertainment Weekly” he says. He hit me with the butt end of his gun.
I guess the “whoa-ohh”s are sort of catchy. It’s better than “uno dos tres catorce” ‘ is that what you want?!
OK he seemed to accept that ‘ If I play along, maybe I’ll get out of this alive after all and get to see my sweet Caitlin grow up.
OK but this next one is just so bad though. I would call it “forgettable at best” but I have a fucking gun to my head so I certainly won’t be forgetting this moment any time sooOWWW. He just kicked me in the back, he kicked me in the back so hard with his boot. why are you forcing me to listen to this???
“ALLOWING you to listen to this” he says. “FOR FREE.” He just cocked the gun. He just cocked the fucking gun oh god oh god
OK the next one is called “California (There Is No End to Love)” and it’s pretty much like my favorite song ever. I love how they’re chanting “Santa Bar-bar-a, Santa Bar-bar-a” all cool like that and oh god he just kicked me in the back again. He can tell when I’m lying.
Look I know it’s easy to shit on U2 these days but I am honestly trying to think of something nice to say about this album and I can’t. I literally have a gun to my head and I still can’t do it. I don’t get what U2 is thinking. It’s like after they experienced their first negative response to that album POP in 1997 they were like, “Oh man we need to regroup and never, ever, EVER stray from our tried-and-true U2 formula ever again.” And then came “Beautiful Day” and it’s just been downhill ever since. It’s sad, really, because they were actually a pretty original band at one point. Sure they’ve always been a little grandiose and cheesy for some people’s tastes, but there’s nothing wrong with a little earnestness in rock ‘n’ roll once in a whAH MY BACK ‘ but when it’s this forced and formulaic it just comes off as lazy, pointless, and, honestly, condescendingOW, I love you, Jessica! I don’t know how many more kicks to the back I can take but I do know that I’m not gonna make it out of this thing alive. He’s already made his decision to kill me, I can see it in his eyes. Tell Caitlin her daddy wouldn’t lie down and just accept this vanilla-wafer-fart of an album as though it were some divine gift from the heavens (or the Cloud, I guess I should say). Tell her Daddy was brave.
He’s asking me if I have any last words, and I do: This next track, “Song for Someone” is a farted-out muzak version of “With or Without You” ‘meets-a-crappy ‘Green Day ‘slow-song with a big dollop of unflavored dog shit on top. What a fittingly lazy and half-hearted title: “Song for Someone” ‘ I can just picture The Edge or one of those fuckers dumbly asking, “Hey, Bono, who is this song for?” and Bono’s like “I dunno, fuckin’ someone,” all not giving a shit, probably fixing his sunglasses in the mirror and trying not to think about The Clash or some other musical idol he once wanted to make proud and knows he’s let down. This guy’s gonna have to go ahead and shoot me because I could literally go on forever about how mediocre this song is ‘ oh god this is it ‘ DO IT, you COWARD! Fucking do it!
Caitlin, daddy loves u
YES, DADDY LOVES U2.
WOW. TALK ABOT A MUSICAL JOURNEY ‘ AND FOR FREE? I MUST HAVE DIED AND GONE TO HEAVEN HA-HA. THAT IS FUNNY BECAUSE NO REASON.
U2 HAS DONE IT AGAIN FOLKS. TALK ABOUT A ROCKING YET ECLECTIC MIX OF ALL THE SOUNDS FROM VARIOS ERAS OF U2’S CATALOG. IT’S EASY TO UNDERSTAND WHY THESE IRISH ROCKERS HAVE WOND MOR GRAMMYS THAN ANY OTHER RECORDING ARTIST IN HISTORY! CONTINUING REVIEW AS NORMAL NOW. AND WHY NOT? I AM SAME MAN AS BEFORE JUST COME TO MY SENSES.
WAIT, OK BUT THIS NEXT ONE IS NOT SO GOOD ‘.AND ITS CALLED “IRIS”? LIKE THE FUCKING GOO GOO DOLLS SONG? YOU GOT TO BE KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW. I KNOW THEY GIVE TO CHARITY AND WERE FRIENDS WITH NELSON MANDELA SO WE CUT THEM SOME SLACK ON QUALITY BUT COME ON, IT’S LIKE THEY’RE TRYING TO BE BORING AND MIDDLE-OF-THE-ROAD WITH THIS SHIT.
OH GOD I KILLED A MAN FOR THIS. I TOOK AN INNOCENT LIFE. “SONGS OF INNOCENCE,” AN OTHRWISE COMPLETELY EMPTY AND MEANINGLESS TITLE IS NOW A BITTERLY IRONIC ONE, IF ONLY BY ACCIDENT. CRY NOT FOR MY DAMNED SOUL AND GIVE ME NO FUNERAL, BUT PUT ON MY EPITAPH THAT THE TRACKS “VOLCANO” AND “RAISED BY WOLVES” ARE STRAIGHT-UP UNLISTENABLE.
BTW, I HAVE BEEN TIM COOK THIS WHOLE TIME. PREORDER YOUR iWATCH TODAY!