Saturday, November 12, 2011

Achtung Baby: B-Sides & Bonus Tracks

This is my first time listening to most of the songs on this disc (Super Deluxe boxset), and I enjoyed the bulk of it, several of which were early versions of what ended up on Achtung -- Lady With The Spinning Head has a similar groove as The Fly, and the drumming rhythm of Oh Berlin turned into Acrobat. Down All The Days became Numb from Zooropa; I much prefer the former, where Bono sings a different set of lyrics. Don't get me wrong, Edge is a fantastic singer, but I think Numb isn't his shining moment. The one song that would've fit perfectly on Achtung is definitely Salome, boasting that signature sexy rhythm pairing of Larry Mullen and Adam Clayton that made Achtung the classic that it is.

There's a remix of Wild Horses here, in which the acoustic guitars are more prominent. It sounds not bad, but you don't have that sort of emotional attachment you get from the original version. Blow Your House Down is the single to promote the Achtung reissue, and it sounds nothing like their Achtung stuff; it's more How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb-sounding, reminiscent of Fast Cars. Meanwhile, the slower soul songs, Heaven And Hell and the Stax classic, Everybody Loves A Winner are pretty rocking. Then there are the three rock & roll covers, which range from excellent (Satellite Of Love), to average (Paint It Black), to fucking terrible (Fortunate Son).

The last song is a remix of Even Better Than The Real Thing, and it's unarguably the best U2 remix ever done. This more-disco version was what the band opened most of this year's 360 shows with (and also Glasto). Speaking of remixes, I'm not gonna review the two remix discs, Uber and Unter, because I'm not really digging them. Some of these are unexpectedly good, but I can't get through most of them without getting a headache after a few minutes of listening. There's just something about dance and club music that makes me nauseous. Next up is the Kindergarten stuff.