That didn’t take long! This review comes to us from Nathan Hart:
The biggest surprise of the launch of U2’s new album isn’t the way it was released—it’s how good the songs are.
It has been five long years since No Line On The Horizon, an album with some great moments but one which also revealed a band in artistic decline. In those five years, they knew they were one more misstep away from irrelevance. The reports weren’t hopeful: a new producer here, a scrapped album concept there. They seemed “stuck in a moment that they can’t get out of”, finally crushed…
If I step on and smash an acorn, have I killed an oak tree? If I answer yes, I’m implying that the acorn has the full capacity and possesses all of the attributes necessary to one day become an oak tree. In its present form, it would be correct to say that the acorn is in a latent (not fully realized) capacity status. The human heart also has (admittedly metaphysical) latent capacities – capacities for both God-shaped goodness and unspeakable evil. Usually, much of this unrealized potential stays unrealized. Few of us act on every good or evil impulse. However,…
This is a clip from a longer interview on The Meaning of Life with Gay Byrne, an Irish program on RTÉ Television (ht, AP). Much of what Bono says here overlaps portions of the book Bono: In Conversation With Michka Assayas that we’ve highlighted in the past. Bono seems to be in something of a league of his own as such a huge rockstar who is so open with his (solid) Christian faith, and he is articulate about it to boot. Watch the whole interview here.
1. This is embarrassing to admit. As much as I love The Replacements, it is The Wilson Quarterly that has truly been rocking my world this past week. Two articles in particular, both from their Spring issue, are worth mentioning here. First, there’s Sarah Courteau’s “Feel Free to Help Yourself”, in which the author surveys not only the history of self-help but allows herself to dabble in it sincerely. All very relevant and, well, helpful–but also not nearly as patronizing as some of us might be tempted to be. She writes, ht WB:
1. The cover story in this month’s issue of The Atlantic is making some waves, “All The Single Ladies,” in which writer Katie Bolick looks into how the recession is effecting the “marriage market.” Something of an unintentional follow-up to yesterday’s piece on Parenthood, Bolick maintains that the explosion of male joblessness and corresponding ascent of females in pretty much all areas of conventional achievement has made it considerably more difficult for young women to find an appropriate spouse. Again, I’m not positive this isn’t simply some fashionable angle right now, but to the extent that this has to do…
Reviewing Spider-Man Turn Off The Dark without having seen the production is a bit like reviewing The Pale King. There are plenty of comments you can make, but nothing you can really say. It’s all conjecture. You can talk about the creators, their significance and ambition, but that’s about it. Song lyrics probably shouldn’t be considered outside of their musical settings, and showtunes can’t be evaluated (or even experienced) apart from their choreography. Yet here we are.
Doubtless you’re aware that the score for the show was written by Bono and The Edge – as they themselves have joked, “We used…
A moving editorial by Bono in yesterday’s NY Times about the remarkable events that took place in Ireland last week. I’m not sure ‘grace’ is the right word, but Cameron’s humility was certainly disarming, in the most important sense. From all appearances it was one of those all-too-rare moments of public life, an instance of genuine surrender and supplication that borders on repentance. And though I would be interested to hear from the Ulstermen themselves, Bono’s note of hard-won optimism strikes me as appropriate and even a little resurrection-like (ht SN):
“What happened should never ever have happened,” said the new…
Talk about jealousy – our friend Nathan was among those fortunate enough to score tickets to U2’s much-anticipated gig in NYC last night, and he sent us the following report. [To read Aaron Zimmerman's excellent 4-part series on the spiritual history of the band, click here, here, here and here.]
“We’ve got a spaceship,” Bono said in reference to the massive staging above his head in the center of the stadium, “but we’re not going anywhere without you.”
He didn’t just invite the audience on his otherworldly journey, he also invited Someone Else: at the end of the first song, “Breathe”, he…
Back in May, Mockingbird began a series examining the intersection of the lives, the faith, and the music of the members of U2. You can read the earlier posts here, here, and here.
The series was born out of the observation that the personal journey of the band—in particular that of Bono, and to a lesser extent, The Edge—traces a narrative arc that is mirrored in the lives of so many Christians. That is, some crisis in our lives turns us into seekers, people looking for love or mercy (ultimately, a quest for a gracious God). Then,…
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