2 – U2’s Achtung Baby Retrospective (Part 2 – Top Non-Single Tracks)


2 – U2’s Achtung Baby Retrospective (Part 2 – Top Non-Single Tracks)
by Aerrow Shapiro (Aerrow Shapiro’s Hour of Power)

11/15/11

Note:  The opinions of this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect KSSU.com nor the public opinion, since people’s tastes differ from each other.

Last time on Aerrow Shapiro’s Top of the List, I listed the top singles from the U2’s 1991 album Achtung Baby in celebration of its 20th Anniversary.  And now I decide to finish the two-part playlist with the tracks from the album that aren’t commercially released as singles but are worth listing.

7 – Love Is Blindness (Track 12)
While trying to listen to each track from the album, I felt that this track is at the bottom of this list because, like the other list, the other tracks stood out relatively more than this one.  I tried to grasp the details of the song, such as its instrumentation, for example.  But it’s hard to describe it other than its usage of organ and piano.  In spite of such difficulty in regards to finding many other stand-out points, at least it makes a great closer to the album.

6 – Tryin’ to Throw Your Arms Around the World (Track 9)
I found this track standing out more than the previously-mentioned song because the laid-back beat and bass groove in this one are mesmerizing.  Plus, the chorus containing the lyrics “I’m gonna run to you, run to you, run to you…” and the guitar being lightly heard also sweetens the deal.

5 – So Cruel (Track 6)
When listening to this track, I felt that this song deserves to be on this position thanks to the instrumentation and its incorporation with the lyrics.  With the heartbeat-like sound being mostly prominent in the intro, the song then kicks off with a near-loop-like drum track being one of the highlights of this song.  Other highlights worth mentioning include the use of the violin and viola, the piano and guitar tracks, and the lyrics revolving around love, jealousy, and the like.

4 – Ultra Violet (Light My Way) (Track 10)
I felt that this track also stood out in this list because of the music and lyrics.  Musically speaking, the guitar chords blending in with the drums make the song work with the song building up a climax into a good finish.  Lyrically speaking, it focuses on love and a relationship being in jeopardy.

3 – Acrobat (Track 11)
While this song was never played live at all, I put this as my Number 3 on this list because of Bono’s personal lyrics in regards to hypocrisy and moral confusion.  As noted by Assistant Professor of Philosophy Craig Delancey (State University of New York), its lyrics focus on motivation and encouragement to stand tall against the forces that involve negativity and discouragement.

2 – Until the End of the World (Track 4)
I felt that this track would be also one of the top three best non-single tracks in this album because of how the song was done.  While intended to be about Judas and his betrayal towards Jesus, there were some different interpretations as noted by Steve Morse of The Boston Globe.  With the way the guitar was played by The Edge with some groove and funk mixed with some percussion loops done by Larry Mullen, Jr., the song builds up into a climax leading to the final moments.

1 – Zoo Station (Track 1)
While it is the first track from the album, I did put it in primarily because the track signifies U2’s transition to the sound in the ‘90s, most notably in this album.  With its intro sound inspired by influences from industrial music, the instrumentation then kicks into a driving dance-like rock song, indicating the band’s reinvention of their music.

So that about wraps up my list for the top non-single album for U2’s 1991 album Achtung Baby, and, in turn, my two-part retrospective of the album.  As usual, if you have any other ideas on how your list should be, please put in your list in the comments for this article.  In the meantime, please keep your eye on the blog in two weeks for another article.
Aerrow Shapiro is a KSSU.com DJ who hosts an alt/indie show called Aerrow Shapiro’s Hour of Power.  You can find more info on that show on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/HourOfPowerKSSU) and on Twitter (@hourofpowerkssu).

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