The physical release of U2’s Songs of Innocence comes out October 13th. The Deluxe version includes a second disc of acoustic versions of the album tracks but also a couple of new songs. After giving it a couple of listens I have to say there’s a lot to like here. Even more than the original album.
Here’s my take:
This is a new track and is what became of the song “Return of the Stingray Guitar” from the latter part of the 360 tour. This is a high energy track and something that would hopefully show up on the tour next year. A definite mix of styles and philosophies that made me think of later years Beatles. Lots of noise. Good noise.
Another new track and it is nothing you’d expect. Feels like a 50’s movie as a U2 song but not a 50’s song. Evokes lots of imagery. I feel myself spinning as I listen. Makes me want to listen more.
“Every Breaking Wave (From Acoustic Sessions)”
This should have been the album version! It is a stunning, uplifting, blazing, beating heart. This is a feeling from a U2 song I have not had in a long time. This is where the band should be and should have been in recent years. Sadly, no one outside of current fans will hear this, except hopefully on the tour. This should be on the radio.
“California (There Is No End To Love) (From Acoustic Sessions)”
This one isn’t all that different. As good as the album version for me though.
“Cedarwood Road (From Acoustic Sessions)”
A nicely pure acoustic version but loses some urgency along the way. Let’s leave at ‘nice’.
“Raised By Wolves (From Acoustic Sessions)”
One of my favourites from the release, gets a more interesting treatment. I like Bono’s vocals here better though musically I like the album version better. Worth having if you get it. New perspective.
“Sleep Like A Baby Tonight (Alternative Perspective Mix By Tchad Blake)”
At 10:28 this song gets the treatment with Invisible piled in as a hidden track. The dirty guitar in the “Sleep” section is awesome. Invisible has a beautifully weird opening but pretty standard otherwise.
“Song For Someone (From Acoustic Sessions)”
The acoustic for this is rather dull. Liked the album version much more.
“The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) (Busker Version)”
This just felt like nothing. This is a rock song that needs to stay a rock song.
“The Troubles (Alternate Version)”
With only Bono vocals (no Lykke Li), it feels different but I definitely like it. The male only voice gives a slightly different feel. This will be great live I have no doubt.