The Best U2 Songs, Ranked

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by americanscientist, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. americanscientist

    americanscientist Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Boston, MA
    The Best U2 Songs, Ranked

    For my fellow U2 fans.

    I thought the author, Steven Hyden, did an excellent job. Seeing Heartland in the Top 20 and Ultraviolet in the Top 10 was very reassuring.

    I also share his affection for the deep cuts on Pop and Zooropa.

    Feel free to sound off on this list but I think he got more right than wrong.
    redmedicine, ARK, tmtomh and 4 others like this.
  2. Aleksander86

    Aleksander86 Forum Resident

    Interesting list. I was just reading Hyden's This Isn't Happening. Radiohead's Kid A and the Beginning of the 21st Century.
    Beamish13 and Stone Turntable like this.
  3. U2 has fallen off my musical radar and I'm not familiar with their last half dozen albums at all but I was scanning this guy's list and remembering how great a lot of those songs are.
    J_D__ likes this.
  4. Vox78

    Vox78 Forum Resident

    If 2 or more of the following 16 songs are missing from any U2 top 50 list I declare it null and void !!

    I Will Follow
    New Years Day
    A Sort of Homecoming
    Where The Streets Have No Name
    I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
    With or Without You
    All I Want Is You
    Mysterious Ways
    Until The End Of The World
    Stay ( faraway, so close ! )
    musicnonstop and J_D__ like this.
  5. Vox78

    Vox78 Forum Resident

    I love the lyrics to Ultra Violet , but musically it's one of the least interesting songs on Achtung Baby. I’ve always been baffled by its popularity among fans..definitely one of the album’s weaker songs.
  6. Teufelzkerl

    Teufelzkerl Forum Resident

    Great and thoughtful list.

    And while I disagree strictly on "Seconds" that high I have always thought EXACTLY the same about the outro of "With Or Without You".
    CybrKhatru likes this.
  7. Stone Turntable

    Stone Turntable Dedicated Listener

    New Mexico USA
    I’m going to fight my way through this horrible presentation (I’m growing to detest the compulsive bloated music listification that is thoroughly corrupting critical discourse, and when combined with a web page trying to load dozens and dozens of embedded YouTube videos it’s a true UX nightmare) because Hayden is such an interesting writer.
    smorrison likes this.
  8. Parachute Woman

    Parachute Woman Positivity

    I like this list and its passion for this wonderful band. I was really happy with his comments on 'One Tree Hill.' I also think that is Bono's greatest vocal performance ever. Scrolling through the list, I like every song on the list. I just adore U2 and I'm always so happy to see them celebrated rather than scorned. :)
    Twilight, tmtomh and CybrKhatru like this.
  9. americanscientist

    americanscientist Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Boston, MA
    You are in luck then because all of those made the list with some thoughtful commentary.

    Hyden’s list is also validated by the inclusion of Spanish Eyes, a song that should have made the final Joshua Tree album.
    ARK likes this.
  10. Man at C&A

    Man at C&A Forum Resident

    Really good list from an intelligent and passionate writer. Good to see Elvis Presley and America and Like A Song in there as well as One Tree Hill in the top 10. I've always preferred the studio and Live Aid versions of Bad to the Wide Awake in America version, but they're all great. My favourite U2 song is One Tree Hill.
    Robert Radman and alan967tiger like this.
  11. Gaslight

    Gaslight ⎧⚍⎫⚑

    Northeast USA
    Was coming into this ready to disagree with the list. But....there's a lot to like here. Many deep cuts, and good ones.

    I still like the 1987 version of Sweetest Thing more though. It's in my Top 20, probably.
    tmtomh, Mr. D and americanscientist like this.
  12. Stone Turntable

    Stone Turntable Dedicated Listener

    New Mexico USA
    Really fun to read.

    However, here's the obligatory "I can't believe...." post.

    I can't believe "Magnificent" is not on the list!

    It's quite a strongly tilted 20th-century true believer list. His non-enthusiasm for 21st-century U2 is like me and post-1978 Grateful Dead.
    duckamuck likes this.
  13. Chemguy

    Chemguy Forum Resident

    I guess one can have fun with these type of lists, but Top 100. Yikes! When they’ve only got a few hundred to begin with...
  14. Mother

    Mother Forum Resident

    Decent Top 100. So many super songs. Is 'I Trip Through Your Wires' there? Love that song
    Man at C&A likes this.
  15. CybrKhatru

    CybrKhatru Music is life.

    Los Angeles
    Me too. When I first got this album in 1987, I used to play that coda repeatedly....
    Man at C&A likes this.
  16. CassetteDek

    CassetteDek social distancing since 1979

    Great read, agree with a lot of the choices and sentiments.
    Mr. D likes this.
  17. Bulsara

    Bulsara His Majesty

    An enjoyable read - thanks for posting. As the author says 'Set aside your cynicism' - and if you do, and forget all the trappings and baggage that come with U2, it's easy to remember that they have made a lot of quite brilliant songs and most of them appear in this list. The list, quite rightly, focuses mainly on 1993 and prior. For me personally, the post-Zooropa output really has been diminishing returns. But prior to that, U2 were so good.
    Mr. D likes this.
  18. George Co-Stanza

    George Co-Stanza Forum Resident

    Not a bad list at all. While All I Want is You is my number 1 U2 songs and one of my 10 favorite songs ever, I can't quibble with Bad and Streets being the top 2. Two U2 classics that always slay live. Hawkmoon 269 so low made me a little sad, but good to see Do You Feel Loved in the top 40.
  19. a customer

    a customer Forum Resident

    I will follow
    New years day
    Trip through your wires
    In gods country
  20. Randy5554

    Randy5554 Forum Resident

    Birmingham, AL
    Surprising to me that Vertigo doesn’t appear. I enjoyed this author’s lists for Petty and Springsteen, so I’ll take a closer look through this for sure.
    tmtomh likes this.
  21. tmtomh

    tmtomh Forum Resident

    It's a good list, but even more so a really read. Thanks for linking to it, @americanscientist !

    I don't consider myself enough of a U2 aficionado to critique the list, although I did follow them closely from the beginning through Achtung Baby.

    The only selection I would change would be "Wire" from The Unforgettable Fire. To me that song belongs way higher than 82. I'd easily say it deserves to be in the top 40 (personally I'd put it in the top 10 or 20, but I recognize my preference is probably not shared to that degree).
    ARK likes this.
  22. carrolls

    carrolls Forum Resident

    Glad to see Unknown Caller high up on the list too. It was a highlight of the 360 tour.
    CybrKhatru, Stone Turntable and ARK like this.
  23. Son of Ziggy

    Son of Ziggy Forum Resident

    Couldn’t get through the list, pop up hell.
    Stone Turntable likes this.
  24. Beamish13

    Beamish13 Forum Resident

    “Hold Me, Thrill Me...” not being in the top 20 is ridiculous
  25. J_D__

    J_D__ Forum Resident

    Huntersville, NC
    Your list is far more accurate!

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