All That You Can’t Leave Behind
(Universal International Music)
by Melody Fox

Rating: Excellent

It took this Irish Band quite a while to come out with something that would get rooted into the listeners’ hearts and ears. Sure… they worked on side projects, movie scores, and what not, but not on a real U2 album since 1997! All their fans and new comers, had quite a yearning for them and everyone was finally rewarded from the long wait towards the end of year 2000, just before the turn of the Century…

All That You Can’t Leave Behind, title with a very philosophical (and realistic) meaning, triggers several little diamonds, starting from the very first (beautiful) song rightfully called Beautiful Day that invites you to reflect on some unhappy or "twisted" events that can rotate around one’s life, but it also reminds you to enjoy the world that surrounds you, to enjoy a Beautiful Day!! I rate this as being one of the most beautiful songs of year 2000, if not the most… A change of pace when you listen to Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of or Elevation where Bono, the Edge, Larry Mullen, and Adam Clayton switch over to a different musical direction once again. Other tracks worth your attention, and not only if you are a "Love" and "Peace" Knight… are Walk On (lyrics from which comes the album title…"And love is not the easy thing…The only baggage you can bring is all that you can’t leave behind"), dedicated to Aung San Suu Kyi who seems to be just another person, victim of these sometimes devastating and unfair times, under virtual house arrest in Burma since 1989, and Peace on Earth, the latter almost a prayer to Jesus, begging him to do something…

All the lyrics are by Bono (I must admit he really went on a poetical writing spree this round!!) except for three songs, co-penned by him and the Edge, whereas the music is by U2. As for some past collaborations, it looks like the Band has decided to team up for keeps (and rightly so since they’ve really turned out some fantastic work together…) with Daniel Lanois and Brian Eno, who are not only Producers of the album, but also have cameo appearances on several tracks. As always, U2 are once again promoters of several Peoples’ Rights Organizations around the world, such as Amnesty International, Green Peace International, War Child, the Burma Campaign, and others.

"U2", as an inhabitant of this Planet, can help U2 make some helpless person’s day become a "Beautiful Day"…

2001.1.28 (Sun. @ midnight something…)--km©