Subscriber Playlist, April 2023: Songs From a Blood Red Sky
Subscribers can listen to a 40-song survey of U2’s storied career.
There was a time in my life — right around my sophomore and junior years of high school — when U2 was the. Most. Important. Band. In. The. World. A friend of mine let me borrow a cassette copy of Under a Blood Red Sky, which featured several performances from the band’s tour for 1983’s War, and that was it. “Sunday Bloody Sunday” became my new favorite song and I became obsessed with Bono, the Edge, Adam Clayton, and Larry Mullen Jr.
I’m no longer quite as obsessed, but there’s absolutely no denying that the quartet is responsible for some of the most influential, inspiring, and indelible rock n’ roll of the last 50 years. Last month, U2 released Songs of Surrender — a companion piece to Bono’s memoir, Surrender: 40 Songs, One Story — which features stripped down versions of 40 songs selected from throughout the band’s catalog. This month’s playlist is my own 40-song survey of U2’s catalog.
I largely skipped the band’s signature songs (e.g., “Pride (In the Name of Love,” “Where the Streets Have No Name,” “With or Without You”). Instead, I focused on songs in the U2 catalog that may not be as well known, but have nevertheless stuck with me throughout the decades, and highlight some of the best aspects of the band’s musical ambitions.