Jump to content

Rediscovering a classic again- Pop


BulletTheRedSky
 Share

Recommended Posts

Last weekend, I took the time to go listen to "Pop". And I cannot understand the hate.

 

It is a truly epic album in every sense of the word. From first track to the last, it's a fun and epic experience. Here we have an album that's catchy, trancy and irresistible, yet simultaneously cold, hard, and angry. There are plenty memorable songs on the album, that it makes for a good hour.

 

I mean, you have the fun opener "Discotheque" which puts you in a party mood. "If God Will Send His Angels" and "Staring at the Sun" are both reflective and excellent tracks. But the best song is "Mofo", a very personal song with a catchy and trancy beat, mixed with an adrenaline rush of a bassline. The chorus "Mother...am I still your son?" sends shivers down my spine.

 

Also, "If You Wear that Velvet Dress" brings back memories- it was my first U2 song i heard as a small kid. It was an amazing time as a kid.

 

The whole album to me is amazing. What about you?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 25
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • Subscriber

I completely agree - 'Pop' is by far their most undeservedly underrated album. I loved it the first time I heard it, I still love it, and I will always love it.

 

It was a very ballsy move of them back when they were recording the album in 1996-97 to incorporate some of the techno-tinged sounds of the time. They could have stuck to their more established songwriting styles very easily, but, for the second time in the 90's, they revamped and expanded their group sound.

 

Those who were quick to dismiss 'Pop' back then claimed not to like the "techno songs" on the album (i.e., the first three songs on 'Pop'). Well, really, none of them are techno songs - they still have that undeniable U2 sound to them, and they rock - just because they used a few sounds and samples of that genre in those songs doesn't make them techno songs. (The only song that truly approaches that style is 'Mofo', and even then I'd say that only the remixes of that song are close to it.)

 

The PopMart tour was wonderful as well! I laughed at those who boycotted the tour because they didn't particularly care for the new album - as always, the large majority of the show featured songs which came out before the new album, and they were done in such a stunning way (e.g., I still have very pleasant flashbacks to the doves flying in tracer fashion on the gigantic screen at the end of WTSHNN during that tour). Even if you didn't like 'Pop', I bet anyone that the live versions of the new songs would have pleased your ears - another example, the opening of the show was one of my favorites ever: the 'Mission Impossible' theme/'Pop Musik'/'Mofo'/'I Will Follow' intro to PopMart shows was spine-tinglingly good! Truly, one of my favorite tours, not just of theirs, but ever.

 

My only complaint about 'Pop', and I do think this hurt their chances of its being more warmly embraced at the time, was their choice of singles and songs released to radio, esp. in America. 'Discotheque' was the obvious first single - no problem there - but 'Staring At The Sun' (the second single) always sounded more like an album track than a single (I've always liked this song live or remixed more than the regular studio version). 'Please' was a good single in Ireland/UK, but, in the US, there was no way that was going to be a hit as a single (and it wasn't). 'Last Night On Earth' was a song I really liked, but, like 'Staring At The Sun', it's more an album track than a single. Finally, IGWSHA was eventually released as a single to coincide with the 'City of Angels' movie, but why didn't they release it earlier? That's an obvious single (I still prefer the original version on 'Pop', though, to the remixed version done for the movie soundtrack).

 

Other songs, had they been singles or just songs released to radio, would have positively increased the album's profile. There are many examples here - 1) 'Do You Feel Loved' (an absolute tragedy that this song was not released one way or another), 2) 'Mofo' (outside the US, this was a single, but it ought to have been promoted more on the radio in the US - I think many people would have liked it had they had the opportunity to hear it), 3) 'Gone' (every bit as big a tragedy as DYFL for not being released to radio and/or as a single - this is one of their best songs from the 90's, period), 4) 'The Playboy Mansion' (IMHO, this is another obvious single, or at least a song that should have been played more on the radio - it would have had fans), and finally 5) 'If Your Wear That Velvet Dress' (I always thought this would have been a great soundtrack song for a movie with a romantic storyline - in any case, if it had had any airplay at all, it certainly would have found fans).

 

Well, there's my dissertation on 'Pop'! happy.gif As I have already said (and proved hopefully with my analysis), I love it! Some albums never get the props that they deserve when originally released, but, IMHO, this album deserves a warm place in the hearts of music fans, not just U2 fans. Had it been promoted more skillfully on the radio and/or in the stores at the time, I think it would have found a wider audience. Well, in any case, I'm just glad it's an enjoyable part of the U2 catalogue. smile.gif

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree that "Pop" is an underrated album!! I absolutely love 3/4 of the album, and think that "Mofo" is one of their all-time best songs!! I listen to the first eight tracks frequently, more so than even "Achtung Baby." However, I will have to say that the three songs in the middle, "Velvet Dress", "Playboy Mansion" and "Miami" diverged too much from the U2 sound for me. . . Personally, I think those songs are just boring and below par for the boys. But, the album finishes strong with "Please" and "Wake-Up Dead Man". . . two powerful and convicting songs!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Subscriber

I've said it more than once... U2 HAVE to play POP this next tour!! I can understand that some songs (aka Discothèque) they prefer to forget them (couldn't understand why!) but come on, Please or Gone, two of the best U2 songs ever done... I hereby rally everyone to fill this post with pro-POP candidatures... haha

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I do think that the "new mixes" on the Best of 1990-2000 are better than the originals (SATS, Gone, Discotheque). 

I did not care for this album when it first came out, but I was very young. But I gave it a listen again last fall and now I am obsessed with it. The themes are very mature, and even the sound takes a more mature pallet to appreciate. I don't know that it will ever be my all-around favorite U2 album, but it is definitely not a throw away like many people think it is.

My favorites on the album are:
Do You Feel Loved
IGWSHA
Gone
Miami
Velvet Dress
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Subscriber

I would really want to see some of the songs, i agree full heartedly it needs to  be back tho.

I dont want to see Miami or Playboy nor would i really care if i see Discotheque or not.

Velvet could be cool, Please DEFINITELY, i heard they originally did IGWSHA acoustically, Wake up Dead man would be great to see, and Do you feel loved was awesome during Popmart.

Gone. Have to bring that back.

My three: Gone, Please and most of all, before any others and more than any other song really

 


Mofo

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Subscriber
http://community.u2.com/domainskins/bypass/img/smileys/smile.gif">dmway[/img] As I have already said (and proved hopefully with my analysis), I love it! Some albums never get the props that they deserve when originally released, but, IMHO, this album deserves a warm place in the hearts of music fans, not just U2 fans. Had it been promoted more skillfully on the radio and/or in the stores at the time, I think it would have found a wider audience. Well, in any case, I'm just glad it's an enjoyable part of the U2 catalogue. smile.gif

great piece of writing that sums it up to me too, wish i could write like that
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Subscriber

POP is way ahead of it's time and it's about time it was brought back into the fold on the next leg of the tour. Everytime I listen to it, it still sounds as fresh as the 1st time I heared it. I would go as far as to say it cemented my following of the band for the last 26 years.

I've alway's thought it was the right direction for the band to take at the time, just to prove they could do a master work and have fun whilst doing it.

If the next album was a mix of Achtung Baby, Zooropa & POP it would be one shit hot recording. Failing that a mix of these live this year would be a dream come true.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...