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The Hands That Built America

“The Hands That Built America” is a song by U2, released on the soundtrack to the film Gangs of New York.[1] It was one of two new songs on their The Best of 1990–2000 compilation, with the other being “Electrical Storm.”[2] It was nominated for Best Original Song at the 75th Academy Awards,[3] but lost to Eminem’s “Lose Yourself.”

Two different music videos were created for “The Hands That Built America”. The first uses a combination of black-and-white footage of the band playing the song, and scenes from Gangs of New York. This video uses the version of the song found on The Best of 1990–2000 CD. The second video is composed solely of black-and-white footage of U2 playing the song, and it was filmed on May 9 2002. This video uses an acoustic version of the song, and is the version found on The Best of 1990–2000 DVD.

Zooropa (song)

“Zooropa” /zuːˈroʊpɑː/ is a song by the rock band U2. It is the opening track from their 1993 album Zooropa. The song was the result of combining two pieces of music, the first of which was conceived in the studio, and the second of which was discovered by guitarist The Edge while listening to soundchecks the band had done while on tour. The lyrics were written by vocalist Bono, describing two characters in a brightly lit city in a futuristic version of European society. Lyrics in the song were based on advertising slogans, and also featured the phrase “dream out loud”, which has appeared in other U2 media. The song touched on several themes, including moral confusion and the future of European society.

Promotional recordings of the song were released in the United States and Mexico, and the song appeared on two record charts shortly after its release in 1993. The song was briefly performed at three shows on U2’s Zoo TV Tour in 1993. The band had difficulties performing it in 1993, and it was not played again until the U2 360° Tour in 2011.

The recording of the song received mostly positive reception from critics, who praised it as the album’s opening track.

Zoo Station (song)

“Zoo Station” is a song by the rock band U2. It is the opening track from their 1991 album Achtung Baby, a record on which the group reinvented themselves musically by incorporating influences from alternative rock, industrial, and electronic dance music. As the album’s opening track, “Zoo Station” introduces the band’s new sound, delivering industrial-influenced percussion and several layers of distorted guitars and vocals. Similarly, the lyrics suggest the group’s new intents and anticipations. The introduction, featuring an “explosion” of percussion and a descending glissando for a guitar hook, was meant to make the listener think the album was mistakenly not U2’s latest record or that their music player was broken.

The song’s lyrics were inspired by a surrealistic story about Berlin from World War II that lead vocalist Bono heard, when overnight bombing damaged the zoo and allowed animals to escape and wander around the city’s rubble. Bono was also inspired by the city’s Berlin Zoologischer Garten railway station and used it as a metaphor for a reuniting Germany. “Zoo Station” was performed as the opening song at every concert on U2’s Zoo TV Tour. The song received positive reviews from critics, many of whom analysed the song as a representation of the band’s reinvention.

Your Blue Room

“Your Blue Room” is a song by Passengers, a group composed of rock band U2 and producer Brian Eno. It is the third track on the group’s only release, the 1995 album Original Soundtracks 1. The track was written for the 1995 Michelangelo Antonioni–Wim Wenders film Beyond the Clouds. Though Eno made the majority of creative decisions during the recording sessions, “Your Blue Room” was one of the few tracks that the members from U2 tried to craft themselves.

Yahweh (song)

“Yahweh” is a song by rock band U2 and the eleventh track on their 2004 album How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. It was mainly recorded in one take, and was performed live by the band during the Vertigo Tour. The song received mixed reviews from critics.

“Yahweh” was written by U2 and recorded by How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb producer Chris Thomas. Prior to the song’s initial recording, the band’s lead guitarist The Edge had the ideas for the music already planned. Lead vocalist Bono later added the vocals spontaneously during the song’s first take.[1] The original vocal take by Bono was so inspiring with “soaring and brilliant” melodies that it carried “Yahweh” in a dramatic new direction from what The Edge had previously envisioned.[1] Moreover, most of what was recorded by the band and Chris Thomas during the initial take survived production. Subsequent recording attempts of “Yahweh” were made by two other producers for the album, Daniel Lanois and Steve Lillywhite, with Lanois even adding a mandolin in one take of the song.[1] Ultimately however, the original Thomas recording of “Yahweh” was left mostly untouched.

During its first take, Bono came up with the “Yahweh line” almost immediately. Afterwards, the band decided that “it was one of those songs that had to be written”.[1] When talking about ideas for the song’s theme Bono remarked, “I had this idea that no one can own Jerusalem, but everybody wants to put flags on it.” he explained, “The title’s an ancient name that’s not meant to be spoken. I got around it by singing. I hope I don’t offend anyone.”[2]

“Yahweh” (יהוה) is the name of the Judeo-Christian God in both the Hebrew Bible (sometimes referred to as the Old Testament), and in the Christian-Greek Scriptures (sometimes referred to as the New Testament).

The oldest Hebrew manuscripts present the name in the form of four consonants, commonly called the Tetragrammaton (from Greek te·tra-, meaning “four,” and gram′ma, “letter”). These four letters (written from right to left) are יהוה and may be transliterated into English as YHWH (or, JHVH). “Jehovah” is the best known English pronunciation of the divine name, although “Yahweh” is favored by most Hebrew scholars.

Although, it is often believed that the name does not appear in the Christian-Greek Scriptures or New Testament, the oldest fragments of the Greek Septuagint do contain the divine name in its Hebrew form. The Tetragrammaton was later replaced by “kyrios” in the Septuagint copies.

For some of the Jewish faith, the name “Yahweh” is associated with taboos against pronouncing it.

Where the Streets Have No Name

“Where the Streets Have No Name” is a song by Irish rock band U2. It is the opening track from their 1987 album The Joshua Tree and was released as the album’s third single in August 1987. The song’s hook is a repeating guitar arpeggio using a delay effect, played during the song’s introduction and again at the end. Lead vocalist Bono wrote the lyrics in response to the notion that it is possible to identify a person’s religion and income based on the street on which they lived, particularly in Belfast. During the band’s difficulties recording the song, producer Brian Eno considered erasing the song’s tapes to have them start from scratch.

“Where the Streets Have No Name” was praised by critics and became a commercial success, peaking at number thirteen in the US, number fourteen in Canada, number ten in the Netherlands, and number four in the United Kingdom. The song has remained a staple of their live act since the song debuted in 1987 on The Joshua Tree Tour. The song was performed on a Los Angeles rooftop for the filming of its music video, which won a Grammy Award for Best Performance Music Video.

When Love Comes to Town

“When Love Comes to Town” is the 12th song on U2’s 1988 album, Rattle and Hum, where it was recorded at the historic Sun Studio in Memphis as a duet between U2 and B.B. King. It was released as the album’s third single in 1989 and reached number 1 in the Irish Singles Chart, number 6 in the UK singles chart, number 10 in the Dutch Top 40 and number 2 in the US Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.

Little Richard is featured preaching, rapping in funky rhyme style, and singing background vocals amid Maceo Parker’s saxophone playing on the extended “Live from the Kingdom Mix.” The single contained two different versions of the Patti Smith song “Dancing Barefoot”. The 7″ and cassette featured the long version, while the 12″ and CD contained the short version. While U2 has stopped playing it live since 1993, it continued to be featured in B. B. King concerts. During the Lovetown Tour concerts, this song would be played, usually along with “Angel of Harlem” and “Love Rescue Me”, in an encore featuring B. B. and his band.

Walk On (U2 song)

“Walk On” is a song by Irish rock band U2. It is the fourth track on their 2000 album, All That You Can’t Leave Behind, and was released as a single in November 2001, the record’s second in Canada and the fourth in the rest of the world. The song was written about Aung San Suu Kyi, a Burmese academic who was chairperson of the National League for Democracy and was placed under house arrest from 1989 until 2010 for her pro-democracy activities. The song won the “Grammy Award for Record of the Year” in 2002, marking the first time an artist had won the award for songs from the same album in consecutive years.

Vertigo (U2 song)

“Vertigo” is the opening track and first single from U2’s 2004 album, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. The single was released for airplay on 24 September 2004; upon release the song received extensive airplay and was an international hit, being featured in a popular iPod television advertisement.

It won “Best Rock Song,” “Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal” and “Best Music Video” at the 2005 Grammy Awards.[1]

The song lent its name to the band’s Vertigo Tour. The song ranked number 64 on Rolling Stone’s list of the “100 Best Songs of the Decade” and scored U2 their sixth UK number-one hit.[2]

Until the End of the World (song)

“Until the End of the World” is a song by rock band U2 and the fourth track from their 1991 album Achtung Baby. The song began as a guitar riff composed by lead vocalist Bono from a demo, which the band revisited with success after talking with German filmmaker Wim Wenders about providing music for his film Until the End of the World. The song’s lyrics describe a fictional conversation between Jesus Christ and Judas Iscariot. The first verse discusses The Last Supper; the second is about Judas identifying Jesus with a kiss on the cheek in the Garden of Gethsemane; and the final is about Judas’ suicide after being overwhelmed with guilt and sadness.

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