Irish Heroes U2 Released Their Debut Album ‘BOY’ 40 Years Ago Today

20 October 2020

Band: U2
Album: BOY
Label: Island Records
Producer: Steve Lillywhite
Artwork: The ‘boy’ is Peter Rowen, the younger brother
of Guggi then a member of the Virgin Prunes and close
friend of Bono.

Released: 20 October 1980 – 40 years ago today
Score: (only) #52 in the UK

BBC Music: “U2’s debut album, was originally to be produced by Martin Hannett, but
at the last minute he withdrew, distraught over the recent death of Joy Division’s Ian Curtis. Imagine how the universe-gobbling careers of the four boys from Dublin would have fared
in the hands of the Mancunian experimentalist… In interviews of the time the band hinted
that their collective christianity had informed the writing. It would take a few more years
before Bono’s words matched his vaulting ambitions and messianic zeal. Also, musically,
it lacks a satisfying variety, with most songs fitting the same skittering four-four pattern
shaded by the Edge’s minimal chords, arpeggios and ringing harmonics… but all the
warning signs were here in this brave, life-affirming cry of youthful defiance.”

Bono: “God’s Spirit moves through us and the world at a pace that
can never be constricted by any one religious paradigm. I love that.”

Turn Up The Volume: The first signs of messianic stadium rock.
Bono has found what he was looking for by now, with or without
you, on the streets with no name. Hallelujah, it’s a beautiful day
when we are all ‘one’.

Key tracks: I Will Follow / Out Of Control


(Stunning live version)

Full album…

U2: Facebook

One comment

  1. U2’s Dublin · November 10, 2020

    It’s a great album. I have an that talks about some of the Dublin locations that inspired the recording of that album and other U2 albums:

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