How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb
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The tension between conviction and temptation creates “Vertigo.” True love requires more than romance (“A Man and a Woman,” “Miracle Drug”). “City of Blinding Lights” ponders the presence and absence of beauty in a relationship. Lines from that song (“I knew much more than I do now”) and “Love and Peace” (“As you enter this life I pray you depart/With a wrinkled face and a brand-new heart”) value the wisdom that comes with age. The band continues to infuse its lyrics with spirituality that, while often cryptic, suggests a transcendent hope. On “Yahweh” lead singer Bono humbly offers himself in service (“Take this shirt and make it clean ... Take this soul and make it sing”). “All Because of You” thanks God for life itself. Written for his father, “Sometimes You Can’t Make It on Your Own” addresses our need to lay pride aside and accept help from others—especially family.
U2’s 11th studio album is a powerful, poetic, optimistic study of life’s mysteries.
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Debuted at No. 1 with 840,000 copies sold its first week. “Vertigo” was a Top-40 hit and an iPod jingle.
Adam R. Holz Bob Smithouser