Albums to watch

Songs Of Innocence

U2

Songs Of Innocence

Album number thirteen from the Dublin rock quartet launched free on iTunes with a physical release to follow

ADM rating[?]

6.0

Label
Universal
UK Release date
09/09/2014
US Release date
09/09/2014
  1. 10.0 |   Rolling Stone

    A triumph of dynamic, focused renaissance: 11 tracks of straightforward rapture about the life-saving joys of music, drawing on U2's long palette of influences and investigations of post-punk rock, industrial electronics and contemporary dance music
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  2. 8.0 |   The Digital Fix

    Has a much cleaner, crisper feel, again looking back to the early 80s, and is much better for it
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  3. 8.0 |   Sputnik Music (staff)

    U2 have contrived to put out a record that is single-handedly capable of reviving the flagging levels of interest in their brand. In other words, this is the kind of album that could just make you believe in their legacy all over again
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  4. 8.0 |   Mojo

    Their best and most thematically complete album since Achtung Baby. Print edition only

  5. 8.0 |   Q

    U2 look to the past in order to build a renewed sense of purpose. Print edition only

  6. 7.9 |   Paste Magazine

    For about 25 minutes, all four men sound energized, challenged and, dare I say it, like they’re having fun
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  7. 7.9 |   Earbuddy

    It’s not cool. It’s definitely not trendy. But for what it is, it’s pretty good
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  8. 7.5 |   Pretty Much Amazing

    This is no disaster, nor is it a masterpiece. Songs of Innocence is a competent U2 album, always a good thing
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  9. 7.5 |   A.V. Club

    U2 are no longer going to reinvent the wheel with every record. In fact, they may not feel comfortable making a record without an entire committee of collaborators. But on Songs Of Innocence, U2 don’t seem compelled to recycle past glories in order to reach for relevance. That’s a tiny—but notable—victory
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  10. 6.0 |   State

    The hard-core and even the most casual fans will get something out of this, though for others the most appealing part of this album may be the price
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  11. 6.0 |   Spin

    Instead of a triumphant return to form, then, Innocence is more of a satisfying side conversation, a familiar face coming round to the back door and whiling the time away nicely till dark or dawn
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  12. 6.0 |   The Music

    The price tag guarantees initial interest, but thankfully there are decent tunes to back up the gimmick
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  13. 6.0 |   Slant Magazine

    The last few tracks of Songs of Innocence, all produced solely by Danger Mouse, hint at the album that could have been
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  14. 6.0 |   The Independent

    They seem to have arrived back where they started, secure in the comfort-zone of stadium-sized yearning they perfected decades ago with The Joshua Tree
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  15. 6.0 |   The Guardian

    The initial impression is that this album sees the band not so much still looking for something that they haven’t yet found, but rather treading old ground without much of a sense of how to move forward
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  16. 6.0 |   All Music

    Majesty doesn't come easily to them anymore, so they've replaced surging melodrama with a brittle, insistent clamor that's intended to dazzle
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  17. 6.0 |   The Arts Desk

    'The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)' gallumphs along like a parody of the Glitter Band
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  18. 5.8 |   Consequence Of Sound

    Sounds very much like what you’d expect a band to sound like three decades deep into its career. It’s a mixed bag, but an overall pleasant and inoffensive one
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  19. 5.0 |   PopMatters

    A majority of Songs of Innocence shows the band fumbling around with current chart trends, settling for melodies and lyrics that are simply “good enough,” and generally making moves that reek of desperation instead of confidence
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  20. 5.0 |   Digital Spy

    It's better than their last few albums by virtue of being less "ambitious" and, despite the occasional flashes of portentousness, much less self-important. That said, it's not a patch on any of the records U2 made when, love or hate them, they actually mattered
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  21. 4.6 |   Pitchfork

    U2 have already squandered any remaining integrity to invent this needy, invasive breed of the Big Event Album, an Album that lacks any kind of artistic statement to deter from the overwhelming Brandiness
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  22. 4.0 |   The Observer

    While Songs of Innocence is more succinct, glossy and nimble than recent U2 outings, there is very little of the rawness, directness or spontaneity of youth to it – and precious little innocence
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  23. 4.0 |   Drowned In Sound

    There are undeniably bright spots, and actually the darker final third is probably as strong as anything U2 have managed in the last decade
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  24. 4.0 |   NME

    This is a serious mis-step that might win a week's worth of good publicity, but could foreshadow a year's worth of bad
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  25. 4.0 |   The FT

    The songs are predictable exercises in stadium rock, all chants and big choruses that rise up like bully pulpits
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  26. 4.0 |   Exclaim

    They've never sounded so ordinary or cloying
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  27. 3.5 |   Under The Radar

    The songs on the first half of the album are bad, but it would be remiss not to note that there's an improvement as it goes on
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  28. 3.0 |   music OMH

    Much of the music seems desperate to soar but never really seems to take flight
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U2: Songs Of Innocence

  • Download full album for just £7.99
  • 1. The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) £0.99
  • 2. Every Breaking Wave £0.99
  • 3. California (There Is No End To Love) £0.99
  • 4. Song For Someone £0.99
  • 5. Iris (Hold Me Close) £0.99
  • 6. Volcano £0.99
  • 7. Raised By Wolves £0.99
  • 8. Cedarwood Road £0.99
  • 9. Sleep Like A Baby Tonight £0.99
  • 10. This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now £0.99
  • 11. The Troubles £0.99
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