No Line On The Horizon by U2 – Metro US

No Line On The Horizon by U2

Album: No Line On The Horizon
Label: Island/Universal
Rating: *** 1/2

U2 has had such an impact on music over the past 25 years that it’s now difficult to distinguish its sound from that claimed by the many bands who have followed in its footsteps. The soaring vocals, anthemic themes, patterned guitars, layered atmospherics and searching spirituality have become commonplace. But the Irish foursome prove on their latest studio effort that creativity still exists in middle age. They often find it by looking backward to their R&B, gospel and classic rock roots. You can hear it in the riffs of Stand Up Comedy and the fuzzed drive of Get On Your Boots. Those searching for a higher power will find it in Bono’s over-the-top delivery of the obvious. (“God is love,” Bono howls in Stand Up Comedy). His angst is everywhere here, rising like steam above the sonic stew cooked up by co-producers Daniel Lanois and Brian Eno. And it’s not an easy angst to share. It’s over-blown, for sure, but we’ve come to expect that.

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