47 Facts About U2


U2 regained critical and commercial favour with the records All That You Can't Leave Behind and How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb (2004), which established a more conventional, mainstream sound for the group.

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In May 1980, U2 released "11 O'Clock Tick Tock", their first international single and their debut on Island, but it failed to chart.

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From July to September 1980, U2 recorded the album at Windmill Lane Studios, drawing from their nearly 40-song repertoire at the time.

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U2 feared that following the overt rock of the War album and tour, they were in danger of becoming another "shrill", "sloganeering arena-rock band".

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Much of the Unforgettable Fire Tour moved into indoor arenas as U2 began to win their long battle to build their audience.

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U2 halted the album sessions in June 1986 to serve as a headline act on the Conspiracy of Hope benefit concert tour for Amnesty International.

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The Joshua Tree was critically acclaimed; Robert Hilburn of the Los Angeles Times said the album "confirms on record what this band has been slowly asserting for three years now on stage: U2 is what the Rolling Stones ceased being years ago—the greatest rock and roll band in the world".

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U2 became the fourth rock band to be featured on the cover of Time magazine, which called them "Rock's Hottest Ticket".

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In contrast to the austere stage setups of previous U2 tours, Zoo TV was an elaborate multimedia event.

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Whereas U2 were known for their earnest performances in the 1980s, the group's Zoo TV performances were intentionally ironic and self-deprecating.

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In 1995, following a long break, U2 contributed "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me" to the soundtrack album of the film Batman Forever.

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U2 began work on their next studio album, Pop, in mid-1995, holding recording sessions with Nellee Hooper, Flood, and Howie B The band mixed the contrasting influences of each producer into their music, in particular Howie B's experiences with electronica and dance music.

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The following month, U2 appeared on the 200th episode of the animated sitcom The Simpsons, in which Homer Simpson disrupts the band on stage during a PopMart concert.

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Later that month, U2 received four additional Grammy Awards; All That You Can't Leave Behind won Best Rock Album, while "Walk On" was named Record of the Year, marking the first time an artist had won the latter award in consecutive years for songs from the same album.

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In March 2005, U2 were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by Bruce Springsteen in their first year of eligibility.

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In February 2006, U2 received five additional Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year for "Sometimes You Can't Make It on Your Own", and Best Rock Album and Album of the Year for How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb; the awards made the album and its singles winners in all eight categories in which U2 were nominated, spanning two separate Grammy ceremonies.

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On 25 October 2009, U2 set a new US record for single concert attendance for one headline act, performing to 97, 014 people at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.

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On 9 September 2014, U2 appeared at an Apple product launch event to make a surprise announcement of their thirteenth studio album, Songs of Innocence.

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U2 suffered fractures of his shoulder blade, humerus, orbit, and pinky finger, leading to uncertainty that he would ever be able to play guitar again.

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In 2016, U2 worked on their next studio album, Songs of Experience, which was intended to be a companion piece to Songs of Innocence.

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U2 toured in 2017 to commemorate the 30th anniversary of The Joshua Tree, with each show featuring a performance of the entire album.

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However, according to Bob Stanley, "U2 rejected post-punk's own rejection of pop as lingua franca, its hunkering down in regional particularity, and its raised finger to populist communication.

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Time magazine's Josh Tyrangiel went further in saying that, "In the towering period that spanned The Joshua Tree to Zooropa, U2 made stadium-size art rock with huge melodies that allowed Bono to throw his arms around the world while bending its ear about social justice.

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U2's music has been regarded as pop in analyses by writers David Hawke, Robert Christgau, and Niall Stokes.

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U2 goes to a place outside himself, especially in front of an audience, when he hits those high notes.

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U2's singing on Zooropa was an ever further departure from U2's previous style; throughout the record, Bono "underplay[ed] his lung power", according to Jon Pareles, and he used an operatic falsetto he calls the "Fat Lady" voice on the tracks "Lemon" and "Numb".

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U2 cited guitarists such as Tom Verlaine of Television, Rory Gallagher, and Patti Smith as some of his strongest influences.

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U2 said by focusing "on one area of the fretboard [he] was developing a very stylized way of doing something that someone else would play in a normal way".

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U2 said, "I couldn't do what most people would consider a normal beat for the song, so I chose alternatives.

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U2's drumming leaves open space, owing to what Modern Drummer described as his understanding of "when to hit and when not to hit".

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U2's kit has a tambourine mounted on a cymbal stand, which he uses as an accent on certain beats for songs such as "With or Without You".

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U2 cites bassists such as Paul Simonon, Bruce Foxton, Peter Hook, Jean-Jacques Burnel, and James Jamerson as major influences on him.

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U2's lyrics are known for their social and political themes, and are often embellished with Christian and spiritual imagery.

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U2 have used tours such as Zoo TV and PopMart to caricature social trends, such as media overload and consumerism, respectively.

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In July 1985, U2 performed at Live Aid, a follow-up to Band Aid's efforts.

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In 1986, U2 participated in the Self Aid benefit concert for unemployment in Ireland and the Conspiracy of Hope benefit concert tour in support of Amnesty International.

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U2 fulfilled a 1993 promise to play in Sarajevo during the PopMart Tour in 1997.

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In 2006, U2 collaborated with pop punk band Green Day to record a remake of the song "The Saints Are Coming" by the Skids to benefit Music Rising.

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At the 3rd iHeartRadio Music Awards in April 2016, U2 were honored with the Innovator Award for their "impact on popular culture and commitment to social causes.

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U2 have eight albums that have reached number one in the US, the third-most of any group.

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Record sales declined in the 2000s and the music industry entered an age of often illegal digital downloading, but according to author Mat Snow, U2 prospered more than younger acts because of a loyal following that held an attachment to the album format.

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U2 were the only group in the top 25 touring acts from 2000 to 2009 to sell out every show they played.

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U2 are regarded as one of the greatest pop-rock acts of all time.

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In 2010, eight of U2's songs appeared on Rolling Stones updated list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time", with "One" ranking the highest at number 36.

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Houston Press journalist John Seaborn Gray attributed U2's pioneering impact on pop-rock music largely to the Edge's unique guitar style.

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U2 received their first Grammy Award in 1988 for The Joshua Tree, and they have won 22 in total out of 46 nominations, more than any other group.

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In Ireland, U2 have won 14 Meteor Awards since the awards began in 2001.

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