One of our most popular features on U2.com in the period between the last two tours was 'My U2 Playlist'
- in which people connected with the band came up with their definitive list of U2 tracks.
In the next few weeks we'll be publishing a whole new set of playlists but before we do, we figured it was a good moment to republish some of those previous ones.
First up it's Garret 'Jacknife' Lee, who's worked with any number of great names in the studio and spoke to us in 2006, not so long after he'd been in the studio with U2, working on How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb. Here's his U2 Playlist.
1. The Electric Co. - Boy
I was very young when this came out and a fan from listening to them on the Fanning show. I vaguely remember a phone-in picking the A-side for the U2/3 EP. I picked the wrong one. Still do. The electric co. was astoundingly good on the Vertigo Tour. Hasn't dated at all. Still urgent and brilliant.
2. Trash, Trampoline and The Party Girl - B-Side / Celebration Single
I love the sound of Bono's voice on this. It's raw and beautiful. A spontaneous and playful recording. Fast cars from HTDAAB has echoes of this. I played this on my battered acoustic when I was a kid. I think I may have listened to the A-side once. A wonderful noise.
3. Like a Song - War
I don't remember loving this when it came out. I was in a bar in New York a few years back and the DJ put this on. It sounded so fresh and blew me away. Fucking brilliant!! You can hear it's influence everywhere now. The Killers, the Walkmen, Bloc Party etc. Larry Mullen is one of the greatest drummers ever. He's inventive and very powerful. The last minute or so of this is superb. If this was released now by a new band folks would be creaming themselves.
4. Bad - The Unforgettable Fire
From the off you know something special is going to happen. Hymnal, honest, earnest, roofless, a band liberated from a need to be cool, sonically superb, undeniably excellent the song still packs a punch now.
5. All I Want is You - Rattle and Hum
You can detect the Springsteen influence here. Aside from one of the most incredible string arrangements ever, this song is a delicious treat. Follows the same topography as Bad. Has all the hallmarks of the U2 sound - seemingly simple yet complex guitar lines, bass doing its own thing. The biblically lyrical references and the drums tastefully providing the backbone but in a subtle, intelligent way. The strings remind me of my favourite song 'Ode to Billy Joe' by Billie Joe Spears and I don't know why.
6. Zoo Station - Achtung Baby
One of the best intros ever. Flood's brain in hyperdrive. The song sounds like the inside of a gurgling Geiger organic robot during orgasm. There is nothing wrong with this track at all. Fucking brilliant! Bands trying to find their experimental side now seem to just copy this formula. Machine and band fused. Edge has an incredible voice. You hear it every so often and it's a treat. An amazing start to U2 version 3.0.
7. Stay (faraway, so close) - Zooropa
An intimate band recording with a stunning vocal performance from Bono. I don't know why I like the names of cities listed in songs but I do. An underrated album. Why? The 90s was an incredible decade for U2. Simply lovely.
8. Miss Sarajevo - Passengers
I love this album. Eno and U2 is always special. My friend Howie B worked on this. Howie has a unique mind. The lyics in this song are some of Bono's best. The East 17 line is so emotive. Nice to hear this on the Vertigo Tour too.
9. Beach Sequence - Passengers
Some wonderful melodic moments here. The voice drifting in and out breaks up the track like seeds do in a mouthful of watermelon. Underdone and all the better for it.
10. Mofo - Pop
Bono's voice sounds great here. Fantastic groove. Dynamically very interesting. A hugely ambitious sound finely executed. Dense and deep. I like to delve and find things over a period of time and there is lots to discover in this song. Shame about the fade out. I dislike fading out. It's better to burn out than to fade away. I only agree with this line when it has to do with recordings.
11. Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of - ATYCLB
I had kind of forgotten about U2 at this point. My wife has always been a huge fan. We had our first baby and had both been out work for quite a while. We had no money but everything was perfect and we were happy. Melissa bought the album and we listened to it on repeat while we painted the new baby's room. I fell in love with U2 again. And then I did the Snow Patrol album and then U2 called me and then we had had another baby. This song is brilliant (despite the weird synthetic brass thing going on at the end).
12. Miracle Drug - HTDAAB
One of the first songs I worked on. Bono's voice has arrived at a magnificent area. It has weight, soulfulness, experience and credibility. The lyrics are some of their best: "there is no failure here sweetheart"; "freedom has a scent like the top of a new born baby's head". A euphoric moment live. Uplifting and dare I say inspirational. An instant classic. Edge sings, Larry sings! Exceptional and effortless U2. They are at one of the best points in their career now. Comfortable in their own skin with nothing to lose and playing like motherfuckers. HTDAAB is one of their best yet.
13. A Man and a Woman - HTDAAB
A very underrated song. Again an exceptional performance by Bono. Boy, Edge can sing high, listen to the middle eight. Sultry and sticky.....a fine fine song about the odd mysteries of love. Which leads nicely too.
14. She's a Mystery to Me - B-Side/ All Because of You
What is there to say ? I do love the Orbison version and it's difficult to hear this without his voice haunting the recording. A simple and brilliant song... ".