Hope this is a goodbye album? Heresy! I have seen so many comments about SoE not sounding like "U2" with most comparisons referencing the older materials. There will not be another War, Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby and nor should there be. Why do you think that U2 has been able to be as large as they are for as long as they have? Their music always changes, they always evolve. Some people hate it some people love it. Zooropa and Pop were a giant leap for alot of fans who prefer their older music. I personally love them. What band can make music in nearly any genera of rock (some blues and others) while making it their own? They still sell out concerts and win awards. They still rock your face off live. They still write good music. NLOTH had mixed reviews however it is great, yet it came out when bands like Imagine Dragons and Kings of Leon were getting big. That album reflects that. They can remain in the spot light by taking some modern flavor of the times and put the U2 spin on it. Pop, did the same for the 90s. Some albums stand out more than others, sure, and how to rank them is a matter of opinion as it is very subjective. I personally love all of the albums for their own reasons. They resonate with me because of a particular feeling they evoke or they become a soundtrack for a period of my life. To say one would hope they quit after SoE? That just doesn't make sense. They are not doing what most "classic" rock bands do when they become a tribute or release materials no one hears. They are still right up front making music that is up with the times.
SoE for one has so much heart N soul. You want vulnerability, how about the way Bono recognizes his ego and also realizes he is mortal? Also, this has some of the best drums and bass lines that they have used in a while. So much momentum.
I can see what you were saying however the godobye album part just hit me wrong. We all have our opinions though and I can respect that.