U2TOURFANS Back from Vacation

Greetings this has been a summer of getting our heads on straight. Our publisher got married and some of us kicked around the world traveling and just chilling out. Back in New York now and starting to really focus on 2014 and our plans for going forward. In our meetings we have come to find out we have our challenges to keep the doors open. We have reached a high over the summer of over 50 million visitors per day. That does not include the over all fan base that visits the community. We have lots of work in the coming months as to how we want to manage our community. Know this our publisher stated we are a free site and we will remain a free site. We  will look to you for donations to keep us going.  We know that with a new project we will be kicking our reporting in high gear and we will have our tour team hit the street if and when a tour kicks off. We will be ready to give you the best we can give you.  Thank you for all your support. We wish you a happy U2tober.   If you would like to make a donation let us know we will send you the link or you can find it on our site.

War Turns 30

U2 War Album Cover

U2 War Album Cover

War is the third studio album by Irish rock band U2, released on 28 February 1983. The album has come to be regarded as U2's first overtly political album, in part because of songs like "Sunday Bloody Sunday", "New Year's Day", as well as the title, which stems from the band's perception of the world at the time; Bono stated that "war seemed to be the motif for 1982." While the central themes of their earlier albums Boy and October focused on adolescence and spirituality, respectively, War focused on both the physical aspects of warfare, and the emotional after-effects.  Musically, it is also harsher than the band's previous releases. The album has been described as the record where the band "turned pacifism itself into a crusade." War was a commercial success for the band, knocking Michael Jackson's Thriller from the top of the charts to become the band's first #1 album in the UK. It reached #12 in the U.S. and became their first Gold-certified album there. War has received critical acclaim. In 2012, the album was ranked number 223 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time".

U2 began recording War on 17 May 1982. The band took a break soon afterwards, as newlyweds Bono and Ali honeymooned in Jamaica. It has been noted that it was not a typical honeymoon, as Bono reportedly worked on the lyrics for the upcoming album. The lyrics to "New Year's Day" had its origins in a love song Bono wrote for his wife,but the song was reshaped and inspired by the Polish Solidarity movement.

War
By u2

The album's opener, "Sunday Bloody Sunday", an ardent protest song, stems from a guitar riff and lyric written by The Edge in 1982. Following an argument with his girlfriend, and a period of doubt in his own song-writing abilities, The Edge — "feeling depressed... channeled [his] fear and frustration and self-loathing into a piece of music." Early versions of the song opened with the line,

"Don't talk to me about the rights of the IRA, UDA"

 After Bono had reworked the lyrics, the band recorded the song at Windmill Lane Studios in Dublin. The opening drum pattern soon developed into the song's hook. A local violinist, Steve Wickham, approached The Edge one morning at a bus stop and asked if U2 had any need for a violin on their next album. In the studio for only half a day, Wickham's electric violin became the final instrumental contribution to the song.

During the sessions for "Sunday Bloody Sunday", producer Steve Lillywhite encouraged drummer Larry Mullen, Jr. to use a click track, but Mullen was firmly against the idea. A chance meeting with Andy Newmark (of Sly & the Family Stone) — a drummer who used a click track religiously — changed Mullen's mind. Mullen used the click track to stay in time for other songs on the album.Mullen said of the album in a 1983 interview, "I think the drumming has always been pretty simple, I don't think it needs to be flashy. For War I use a click track, something I haven't used before, it's a way of keeping time in my headphones. When I listened to the music in time with the click track I knew I had to bring it down to the real basics. Hopefully for the next LP it will be more complicated, I'll move on. I think of it as a musical progression for myself because I learned a lot recording this album, just about my own style and that's what I wanted to do. I think there is a definite style on War where there isn't on the previous albums."

The studio version of "40" was recorded right at the end of the recording sessions for War. Bassist Adam Clayton had already left the studio, and the three remaining band members decided they didn't have a good song to end the album. Bono, The Edge, and Mullen Jr. quickly recorded the song with The Edge switching off to both the electric and bass guitar. Bono called the song "40" as he based the lyrics on Psalm 40. In live versions of the song, The Edge and Clayton switch roles, as Clayton plays guitar and Edge plays the bass.

U2 by U2
By U2, Neil McCormick

Three of the tracks featured backing vocals by The Coconuts, of Kid Creole and the Coconuts. In the words of Steve Lillywhite, "they just happened to be in Dublin on tour, so we hung out with them and they came in and sang on "Surrender." So it was sort of random - this serious Irish rock band having the Coconuts on their album."

The album was titled War for several reasons; in 1982, Bono said that the album was called War because "War seemed to be the motif for 1982," adding that "Everywhere you looked, from the Falklands to the Middle East and South Africa, there was war. By calling the album War we're giving people a slap in the face and at the same time getting away from the cosy image a lot of people have of U2."The Edge said that "It's a heavy title. It's blunt. It's not something that's safe, so it could backfire. It's the sort of subject matter that people can really take a dislike to. But we wanted to take a more dangerous course, fly a bit closer to the wind, so I think the title is appropriate."

October

 

 

October

And the trees are stripped bare

Of all they wear

What do I care

October

And kingdoms rise

And kingdoms fall

But you go on…

 

At the beginning of every October, I play this track. I don’t know why, but I just do. The song is a haunting song, consisting of 26 words and two themes. 

The first theme has to do with death. Obviously, it’s Bono’s reflection of a tree losing its leaves, which I think is a metaphor about losing his mother. The mother I feel he is speaking of is Mother Nature, stripping us bear of our emotional being as we take on winter. As I listen to the track, I envision a heavy, grey sky above me, almost suffocating. A lone tree, away from the forest on the horizon, stands naked before me.

The image is not in color but in high contrast black and white. The starkness reminds me of those days trekking across the University of Iowa campus as fall slipped into winter. Harsh wind, howling through the through the streets flanked by buildings made of brick and limestone, wisps dry leaves from unsecured spot to another.  

The second theme spoken here is one of kingdoms and very little has been said about this other that it may be a reference to the Russian revolution. It’s interesting how these two themes meet in this song, especially when the band was still in their religious phase as the album October was being worked on. Kingdoms could also loosely refer to the Kingdom of God or Jerusalem or Babylon or Rome for that matter. Yet, it is has been said that Bono was reflecting on the Bolshevik October uprising and how that intertwines with the emotions of losing a mother is the biggest mystery here.

I will say this, October, for this U2 fan, has been the biggest month of my life. I saw th Irish quartet in concert for the first time on October 20th, 1987. I was just a sophomore in college at the University of Iowa when Bono et al came to Iowa City to play on the Joshua Tree tour. Our campus wasn’t on the initial tour schedule. We got the show by default thanks to the University of Northern Iowa not allowing the band to set-up their outdoor stage.

It was a stroke of luck that they came and played Carver Hawkeye Arena on that foggy night where trees were stripped bare of all they wore much like in the song. A year later, I relived my Joshua Tree tour experience when the band released Rattle & Hum on compact disc.  It would be another three Octobers before their next release, Achtung Baby, and I waited them out – patiently and impatiently.

Eric Shivvers is the author of I’m a Fan: How I married U2 into my life without going to the altar. You may find him on Facebook: I’m a U2 fan or on Twitter: @iamau2fan. His book is available at Amazon.com.

The Unforgettable Fire

25th anniversary of their 1984 classic, The Unforgettable Fire, with an expanded reissue. Due out on October 27th via Island/Universal, the release will consist of b-sides, rarities, alternate versions, and previously unreleased songs, including “Disappearing Act” (a.k.a. “White City”), which according to Billboard, was only recently finished.

As for configurations, fans will be able to choose between a 180 gram vinyl album version, a standard re-mastered CD version, a deluxe double version with a 36 page bound book, and a limited edition super deluxe box set, which includes the two disc version, a 56 page bound book, 5 portfolio prints, and a DVD that will feature rare videos, concert footage and a “Making of” documentary of the album.

So for the real U2 fan expect that everything you would expect to be included to be. remember the reissued The Joshua Tree  in 2009 and War, Boy and October (2008)

Remember we had reported sometime back the the boys planned a follow up to No Line on the horizon due out sooner, which we can expect more tour dates. Our sources suggest all the way to the end of 2010. U2 PR train is leaving the station and its a rolling along. Full speed ahead !

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