What if I told you: "After a five year gap between albums - the band's longest ever - U2 is about to make an airwaves-bursting, stadium-filling return with their new album, "No Line on the Horizon"?"
"Okay, that's not an awful title at all", you'd think. "And why not burst some airwaves, fill some stadiums, that's OK by me, I mean, c'mon, it's U2 for Christ's sake, they're like the most biggest, gigantic band on earth." And you'd be right. It is an okay title (hey, at least it's not "All That You Can't Leave Behind", amirite?)
"But wait!" I'd tell you, "Bono says it's got trance influences! And like that wouldn't be an awesome enough idea, Grammy-winning, highly overrated rock producer Steve Lilliwhite thinks it's U2's best ever, a return to Achtung Baby-style experimentalism." If you had any love left for U2 and even a thread of imagination to go with, you'd probably be like: "Whoah, trance influences? That sounds cool. And yeah, I can't stomach their post-"POP", "ballad to my dead father" type adult contemporary period either. So Achtung Baby's alright by me!" By this time I'd probably introduce you to "No Line's" artwork, that Hiroshi Sugimoto bit on the left. You'd go: "That's nice. Very trendy! Kinda´ looks like a minimal house record, but that's okay by me, I like minimal." And I wouldn't hold that against you. A lot. Well, okay, may-be I'd slip in a sly remark about sushi. But THEN! Then I would tell you this is is their album cover, but check out this esthetically inferior single cover over here! What's this, then? Ominous, isn't it?"
Judging by your confused face, I'd then explain: "Yeah, there's a single too! And it's called "Get on your boots" or "Get yer boots on" or something like that. And it's GHASTLY! It's a fucking embarrassment, that's what it is! There's this cheesy muscle-rock guitar riff that makes you think "Where's Edge's HEAD? What happened to his sound, man? Where'd his sound go?" And then, even before that, even before that god-awful "hey, look! I'm young again and I'm totally ripping off Bob Dylan and some bloke from the eighties who's name I don't even know"... Even before that cheesy Bono lyric comes in, even before that muscle-riff, there's this break Larry Mullen does. It's lifted verbatim from Peter Bjorn and John's happy-crap 2007 summer hit "Young Folks"." You'd be like: "Hey man, don't spew your vile hatred on "Young Folks"! I liked that song." And I'd say: "You would, wouldn't you?" And then we'd go off on a completely different discussion. Because "Get Yer Sexy Boots On" is by far the most disappointing opening single U2 has ever delivered. It's a schizophrenic b-side medley, barely held together by FM Morning Show production values; it's embarrassingly eastern-flavoured bridge segues into a chorus completely lacking in melody, much like the rest of the song. While Bono lays down gibberish about politics and that dreaded "Do you know how beautiful you are?" line, no doubt adressed at a stadium filled with people waving cell-phone cameras at him. Sounds like they went back and re-did something they already accomplished with "Achtung Baby". I mean, literally: they time-travelled back and failed at something they were succesful at before.
But I wouldn't really say all that, because we'd be talking about bands that still sound like they care about their music, not use it as some kind of platform for humanitarian work. Why most critics have been so kind to this turd, is beyond me. Even a passing look at fan opinions is devastating. They really don't like it and neither should you. But what about the album then? Well, there's still hope "Boots" is an inexplicably awful single-choice and those promised trance influences are in there somewhere. Though - when I start to think about it now - they might not sound as I imagined they would. 2/10
Oh yeah, here's the song: U2 - Get On Your Boots - will not have it contaminate ZA/UM's pages.
This has been an official "PLAYER HATER" review. Look forward to a steady stream of these in the future. And remember: SPREAD THE HATRED! PUNISH THE FAILURE!