- Audio CD (March 4 1997)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Label: Universal Music Canada
- ASIN: B000001EAQ
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette | LP Record
- Average Customer Review: 260 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #19,505 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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The Japanese Version of Pop with One Extra Track- 'Holy Joe'(Guilty Mix).
Get one thing straight: Techno is merely the fairy dust sprinkled atop another massive, brilliantly conceived slab of dense, drug-like rock & roll from the only band this side of the Smashing Pumpkins who could pull off such a feat. Mainstream audiences are desperate for something fresh yet familiar, and this Warholian treatise on the plasticity of pop culture expertly mixes new sonic colors with the band's signature art-rock genius. "Discotheque" is an exhilarating opener, "Staring at the Sun" is their answer to relative upstarts Oasis's hit "Wonderwall," and "If God Will Send His Angels" has the makings of a crossover anthem. This is U2 in peak unit-shifting form. --Jeff Bateman
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The answer is: U2. Ever-evolving, never-satisfied U2. Since War, U2 has shown incredible innovation in their music. This fact is lost on many listeners who started with Achtung Baby or The Joshua Tree and looked backwards, but if you start with Boy (U2's first studio album) and continue through All That You Can't Leave Behind (U2's most recent release), a line of progress is clearly delineated from start to finish.
U2 has always been interested in ideas, both musical and lyrical. From The Unforgettable Fire through Rattle and Hum, the ideas were inspired by America: country and blues, America's foreign policy, Elvis Presley, "democracy", civil rights, religion. On Achtung Baby and Zooropa, the ideas were a result of the new, unified Europe: disco sounds, seamy political dealings in the old east, unity, commercialism.
It was based on the culmination of these explorations and the completion of the ZooTV tour that U2 pulled back a notch and created Pop. Their vocabulary at this point was infused with techno rhythms and synthesized drum loops. For these effects to be used as the primary instrumental vocabulary of Pop, then, was completely natural.
There's another issue in addition to the ideas and themes that are explored on Pop - the loss of a mother, search for a god, excesses, and lack of direction: the music rocks. You'd be hard-pressed to find songs even on Achtung Baby that rock harder than "Discoteque", "Do You Feel Loved" (whose rock-solid intro was even used to get fans juiced up during the '97 and '98 NBA Championship games in Chicago), "Mofo" (a frequent concert-opener on the PopMart tour), or "Gone".
There have been albums where U2 have focused more on details or added more finishing touches (like Achtung or Zooropa). There have been better messages in Bono's lyrics (Joshua Tree or Unforgettable Fire). However, U2 have never played better rock and roll before or since.
Many U2 fans were shocked by such a transition and dismissed the band for turning into a 'techno' act. Of course, change was nothing new to U2, considering that The Unforgettable Fire, Achtung Baby, and Zooropa all signaled changes in their sound. But my qualms with Pop do not stem from the style of the music, but rather the songs themselves.
After listening to Pop over and over since 1997, I have come to this conclusion: Pop suffers because U2 created music from the head rather than the heart. This was a point in their career where their image seemed to matter more than their ambitions, and much of Pop sounds like music that U2 felt that they had to do rather than wanted to do. So as a result, the album sort of feels half-baked and unfulfilled.
No, the album is not unlistenable. I can listen to it straight through and restrain myself from skipping any tracks. There are lots of fine moments, including the dramatic single 'Please' and the rousing dance number 'Mofo.' But U2 are capable of so much more than this. Perhaps it was the next natural step in their evolutionary stage to get such trendy tendencies out of their system. But you can hear a far more comfortable U2 in All That You Can't Leave Behind. The reason? It came from the heart and not the head.
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Get the import w 'holy joe'.
Crystal Method is a perfect example of what happens when poor musicians attempt to...Read more