Magazine article Newsweek

Pop

Magazine article Newsweek

Pop

Article excerpt

U2 goes high-tech and lowbrow on the new 'Pop'

NO BEER COMPANY OR CEREAL brand ever flogged a new product and a new image more heartily than U2. Bono, the Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen are hyping their album "Pop" as if it were sliced bread, satellite TV, runless pantyhose and the Internet all rolled into one. THE NEW U2, blares the March issue of Spin, next to a photo of the band cavorting like refugees from a Eurotrash dance party. Their video "Discotheque" is a glitzy showstopper featuring some unexpected homoerotic mugging, as well as a bizarre parody of the Village People. For a press conference staged at a Manhattan Kmart on Feb. 12, Bono wheeled through the lingerie section dispensing parities and fuzzy animals to slackjawed spectators. U2 may be older in years, but they're younger in marketing; they've doctored their new album with slick techno production and whizzy dance beats. In Spin, Bono gets a bit misty just thinking about it. "We're actually trying to make a kind of music that doesn't exist yet," he says. "That is a terrifying place to be."

Or, as they say in business school: sell, sell, sell! U2 has actually been the "new" U2 for a while now, ever since Bono traded black jeans and sincerity for plastic pants and irony on the band's 1991 album "Achtung Baby." But what's ironic about the irony--please, try to keep up here--is that it's actually quite sincere. U2 hasn't changed nearly as much as they're pretending. "Pop" is emphatically a U2 album: underneath the trancey drum loops and fat synthesizers the band is still writing big rock songs, and the Edge's guitar sound is as distinctive as ever. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.