Although now in their later years they're beginning to become a thing of the past, U2 is still one of my favorite groups with some of the most classic songs and albums. Few groups draw as many crowds as U2 does, even when their album is a flop, and that says something about their musical power. A lot of people hate Bono and say he's arrogant and pretentious - which is true - but that still doesn't cancel out his lyrical talent or the band's amazing sounds. Larry is my favorite guy, because he's quiet, and Adam.
Here I'm gonna share some of my favorite U2 cuts that most fans don't really notice or care about. Many of them actually are songs that did make it on radio for a short time or were meant to be hits but eventually just got overlooked. Most people like the classics like "The Sweetest Thing" and "Beautiful Day" and neither of those have ever been very special to me, but I can enjoy and appreciate some of their lesser-known songs. However, I absolutely hated their '97 album Pop and was utterly disappointed with Songs of Ascent, so there are none from those albums I can include.
"A Sort Of Homecoming" - The Unforgettable Fire
This is one of the hidden jewels of U2's old stuff, with a sound that immediately hypnotizes you and makes you dreamy, as its lyrical poetry is even curious and well-crafted. I always see myself flying in the sky over a desert with a highway, and sometimes if I'm feeling romantic I will see a girl standing out there with a breeze blowing her hair.
"Lemon" - Zooropa
Zooropa was not U2's greatest album but I liked it a hell of a lot better than that garbage Pop. Both albums were done around the guys going through a phase of wanting to sound techno and clubby, which wasn't really working. However, "Lemon" excelled at that pretty well for a rock band. Techno and club as we know it now is crazier than what it was in the 90s, so their version was pretty nice.
"Yahweh" - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb
Atomic Bomb was finally a nice comeback to their heavenly style that was way more heartfelt than All That You Can't Leave Behind. "Yahweh" really resonates with me because of its spiritual context, that only U2 would never be afraid of doing and wouldn't give a shit about what the rest of the world thinks about it either. Just like "A Sort of Homecoming," "Yahweh" has a celestial sound that takes you away.
"Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses" - Achtung Baby
Another good one from Achtung Baby, this actually may be my absolute most favorite U2 song. Most fans don't really care about "Horses" but I love this song. There is the original version and a slightly faster one the band called the Temple Bar remix that I don't like as much, so the lyrical video I posted is the only original one you can hear. It definitely has something of a western sound and you can tell that the opening guitar chord is probably what Bono intended for, similar to the sounds of Johnny Cash, who he was inspired by. The part where you really get hypnotized is at 3:57 "don't turn around...don't turn around again..."
"Wire" (rare studio cut) - The Unforgettable Fire
While I do love the version they cut for the album, there's something about this rare version I really, really like, maybe because it sounds a little more raw. And something about the different guitar opening makes me think of an old Corvette speeding down a highway at night in the 80s, lol.
"Red Hill Mining Town" - The Joshua Tree
Something about "Red Hill Mining Town" really hits deep for me. It can be a very emotional song for me and if I listen to it at the wrong time it can bring me to tears and make me think of my sister. I remember as a very little boy hearing this song playing in KMart, but didn't remember until I listened to it on The Joshua Tree.
"Crumbs From Your Table" - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb
Definitely in the Top 5 for me is "Crumbs" which also has an even more radiant celestial sound that reaches deep into your mind and emotions. It's almost as if U2 purposely meant for it to be like that. The cryptic lyrics of this song has always been very fascinating to me. Some have said it's a veiled song about America, but when I try to apply that philosophy to the words when I listen, I'm not exactly seeing that. Get ready at 2:52, that's when the real hypnotic chords start.
"Fez/Being Born" - No Line On the Horizon
Next to "Get On Your Boots," "Fez/Being Born" is my second favorite song from Horizon, which overall was not a very strong album to me despite it being a pretty big success. But what I love about it most is the way the words tell a story, and it's the only song where they say the album's name in it.
"Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out" - All That You Can't Leave Behind
This actually is one of their well-liked songs, but most U2 fans would rather overlook it for the overexposed "Beautiful Day." The video is pretty cool too, but what makes this song mean so much to me is because the message really resonated with me years ago at a time in my life full of dullness, difficulty, and depression.
"Electrical Storm" - The Best of 1990 - 2000
I never knew anything about this song until I found it on YouTube back in 2010. I fell in love with both the song and the video instantly. I loved that they used Larry as the lover and the woman who's a Scandinavian actress. The song really made me contemplate the troubles that can happen in relationships and how there really is or can be both good times and bad, and that you don't always give up.
"A Man and A Woman" - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb
I like to think of this song as a hidden nugget on Atomic Bomb that few people can really appreciate or get in on, like a secret club. I always thought it should've made it onto radio but for whatever reason it didn't. Makes me think of two lovers secretly slipping away in one of those lavish hotels in some place like southern France, where the walls and curtains and carpet on the stairs are scarlett red, and the lady is wearing a red dress and red lipstick. Lol.
Hope you enjoyed. Tell me what your favorites were. Tell me what all your favorite U2 songs are.