U2 Reimagines Their Catalog on “Songs of Surrender”

U2: Songs of SurrenderU2 has re-recorded and reimagined forty songs from their extensive catalog for the new album, Songs of Surrender. Curated and produced by guitarist The Edge, the collection includes completely new versions of songs like “With or Without You”, “One”, “Sunday Bloody Sunday”, and more. Some tracks have new arrangements, while others have new lyrics to fit 2023.

“Music allows you to time travel,” explained The Edge, “And we became curious to find out what it would be like to bring our early songs back with us to the present day and give them the benefit, or otherwise, of a 21st century reimagining. What started out as an experiment quickly developed into a personal obsession as so many of our songs yielded to a new interpretation. Intimacy replaced post punk urgency. New tempos, new keys, and in some cases new chords and new lyrics arrived. A great song, it turns out is kind of indestructible.”

The news came within days of Fender announcing a new signature bass amp for Adam Clayton. The bassist told Billboard that the project was spurred on by vocalist Bono writing his best-seller Surrender: 40 Songs One Story. During the band’s downtime, while Bono was writing, they looked at the songs themselves.

“We started to see that a lot of the early songs that had felt incomplete or unfinished or naive, when one looked at them now, those were songs with a lot of DNA and intuition on them,” Clayton told Billboard. “From the position of being in our sixties, those lyrics and those songs meant something, and it meant Edge could slow them down. He could bring the key down. Bono could deliver the vocals in a different way. And suddenly, there was a personality that had much more of the gravitas of a story that Johnny Cash or Willie Nelson might tell. It engaged with you in a different way. It stopped you thinking about that big ol’ 80s rock band that had this big, stadium-filling sound.”

Among Clayton’s favorite of the new tracks is “All I Want Is You,” on which he played an acoustic bass guitar. “I can really hear the air moving and I can hear my fingers on the strings, and I just like that intimacy,” he said.

U2 will be returning to live performances this fall as they help to open the MSG Sphere in Las Vegas, Nevada. Drummer Larry Mullen will not be in attendance as he takes a year off to recuperate from injuries. Bram van den Berg will be sitting in to create the groove with Clayton.

Songs of Surrender is available now as a box set and CD, vinyl, and as a digital download (iTunes and Amazon MP3).

Songs of Surrender Track List:

Side 1 – The Edge:

  1. One
  2. Where The Streets Have No Name
  3. Stories For Boys
  4. 11 O’Clock Tick Tock
  5. Out Of Control
  6. Beautiful Day
  7. Bad
  8. Every Breaking Wave
  9. Walk On (Ukraine)
  10. Pride (In The Name Of Love)

Side 2 – Larry:

  1. Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses
  2. Get Out Of Your Own Way
  3. Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of
  4. Red Hill Mining Town
  5. Ordinary Love
  6. Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own
  7. Invisible
  8. Dirty Day
  9. The Miracle Of Joey Ramone
  10. City Of Blinding Lights

Side 3 – Adam:

  1. Vertigo
  2. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
  3. Electrical Storm
  4. The Fly
  5. If God Will Send His Angels
  6. Desire
  7. Until The End Of The World
  8. Song For Someone
  9. All I Want Is You
  10. Peace On Earth

Side 4 – Bono:

  1. With Or Without You
  2. Stay
  3. Sunday Bloody Sunday
  4. Lights Of Home
  5. Cedarwood Road
  6. I Will Follow
  7. Two Hearts Beat As One
  8. Miracle Drug
  9. The Little Things That Give You Away
  10. 40

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