U2's relevance in the 2010's

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    • U2's relevance in the 2010's

      This comes to mind often as of late for me. With all the great success U2 has had over the course of their 40 years together (which is astounding by the way), does this band still have any relevance in today's society? Has U2 become so polished and so perfectionistic about every album and single they release that they've kind of stopped taking big creative risks with not only their sound but their image?

      For me to say this isn't easy, being a long time U2 fan, but I feel like that since the late 1990s, U2 has become too predictable with every album they've released. I still consider "Pop" to be their last best album in terms of creative innovation, and its funny how the band considers that one of their worst albums (and they claim it was never properly finished). Nevertheless, it sounds great even to the day and it has a raw feel that their later albums lack.

      I've gotten a bit off topic here with this posting, but if U2's relevance can be reduced to writing huge anthemic stadium rock songs for the populist masses around the planet, I'm not sure that's really relevant to me. I mean, to me, the "selling out" of U2 began with their deal with Apple computers a bit over 15 years ago and has progressed to the point where U2 might as well be seen as a "corporate band" (and the great wealth they've amassed has indeed made them the world's richest band to date). I am not sure if the world will ever see the likes of pre-corporate U2 (Late 70s - late 90s) but boy, sometimes I wish they could "come back to earth" and throw out some half-finished "raw" albums like "Pop" again, because even the half-finished raw albums they make are still 2 to 3 times better than most bands' best albums today.

      If anyone else wants to chime in or debate my view, I'd love to hear from you. Thanks. :)
    • I admit I've become severely desensitized to U2's music now. But there was a time when I was younger and had just discovered U2's music and I was blown away. But after a while, when you hear the same songs hundreds, if not thousands of times, its an issue of songs that are overplayed (which causes the desensitization).

      Regarding their relevance based on hearing U2's music in malls, restaurants and radio, I'll bet if you ask the average Millennial between the ages of 16-24 who U2 is, they might not even have a clue.