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Old 06-18-2022, 02:32 PM   #1
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DMB vs U2

I don't know how many U2 fans we've got on the forum, but it's hard to not admit the massive influence they've had on rock music over the last 4 decades. Should DMB and them even be compared? Are they just to different to say one is better than the other?
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Old 06-18-2022, 02:41 PM   #2
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Re: DMB vs U2

I like early U2. I think they have a Big 3 just like DMB. War, The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree. I don't think either band is better than the other. Lillywhite produced War, and Daniel Lanois helped with Joshua Tree & Unforgettable Fire. Some cool overlap there
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Old 06-18-2022, 02:47 PM   #3
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Re: DMB vs U2

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Originally Posted by bowa36 View Post
I like early U2. I think they have a Big 3 just like DMB. War, The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree. I don't think either band is better than the other. Lillywhite produced War, and Daniel Lanois helped with Joshua Tree & Unforgettable Fire. Some cool overlap there
Yeah I thought it was interesting that Lillywhite did both DMB & U2's first three albums. I've always wondered why U2 has so much more appeal overseas while they were both extremely popular in the US.
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Old 06-18-2022, 04:28 PM   #4
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Re: DMB vs U2

I'm not a fan of U2, but I respect them. I remember seeing Batman in the theaters and liking Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me when that was their current single.

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I've always wondered why U2 has so much more appeal overseas while they were both extremely popular in the US.
U2 is classic rock, even though I believe they're on the newer side of the genre ('76). Also, lol 45 years old is "newer" classic rock. Anyway, U2 has that classic rock sound that's been huge in the states since the classic rock moment started in the mid/late 60s, and they're really big in a lot of other countries.

Compare that to DMB, which doesn't have the type of sound that's really big in other countries. I see DMB as a very American band (with lots of influence).

That's just me though. Good question.
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Old 06-18-2022, 06:20 PM   #5
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Re: DMB vs U2

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I'm not a fan of U2, but I respect them. I remember seeing Batman in the theaters and liking Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me when that was their current single.



U2 is classic rock, even though I believe they're on the newer side of the genre ('76). Also, lol 45 years old is "newer" classic rock. Anyway, U2 has that classic rock sound that's been huge in the states since the classic rock moment started in the mid/late 60s, and they're really big in a lot of other countries.

Compare that to DMB, which doesn't have the type of sound that's really big in other countries. I see DMB as a very American band (with lots of influence).

That's just me though. Good question.
See and that's why I feel like I'm in the minority when I say I like them both about equally. Because I feel like you either like the sound of one or the other, but I love both. It probably doesn't help that my dad raised me on Joshua Tree and U2's 80's hits 😂
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Old 06-21-2022, 09:26 AM   #6
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Re: DMB vs U2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Erich View Post
I'm not a fan of U2, but I respect them. I remember seeing Batman in the theaters and liking Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me when that was their current single.



U2 is classic rock, even though I believe they're on the newer side of the genre ('76). Also, lol 45 years old is "newer" classic rock. Anyway, U2 has that classic rock sound that's been huge in the states since the classic rock moment started in the mid/late 60s, and they're really big in a lot of other countries.

Compare that to DMB, which doesn't have the type of sound that's really big in other countries. I see DMB as a very American band (with lots of influence).

That's just me though. Good question.
This is funny to me in a good way.

I turned 50 this year. I remember when "classic rock" became a thing, as stations that were playing the edgier stuff from the '60s and '70s wanted to distinguish themselves from the stations playing '50s and '60 rock/pop...the "golden oldies". I also distinctly remember when U2 got scant airplay on MTV (mostly via I Will Follow, being "old" at that point) then the Gloria video came out and it was uphill for a decade after that.

U2 may now be see as classic rock, but they were part of something clearly new and different when they came out. My sister and I watched MTV pretty from the first day it aired until the mid-90s or so. Our dad was a music junky, so we were listening to music ALL of the time. He enjoyed the jazz and pop of his youth (including what his parents listened to), but also loved hearing/finding new music. MTV was (at the time) an obvious evolution of radio, but it made image far too important..."back when I was a boy..."

Anyway, I've fallen in and out of love a few times w/ U2. My wife and I were just talking the other day about how amazing Achtung Baby as the first real FULL studio follow-up to Joshua Tree. Rattle & Hum wasn't a fully realized studio album, more of an ambitious attempt to pay tribute to American musical heroes/legends and document their creative process (their Let It Be). The band was clearly still riding the understandable massive success of JT and several of the tunes, especially All I Want Is You, are coming from a similar place as the music on JT. But AB was astonishing...they really grappled w/ their success to that point and decided they needed to break their mold...and holy shit did they. For me Achtung is their best album by a LOT, and I love War, TUF, JT, & ATYCLB. Zooropa & Pop are definitely U2's ED & SU...not for me.

In the end, it's not a contest. You can compare/contrast any artists, but there's no objective measure of who's better. We can unequivocally state that U2 was more popular than DMB, but that's not a measure of quality. Both are world class bands, but it's interesting that one is made of new musicians searching for and finding their voice while the other was at least a pair of evolving world class musicians and at least two becoming excellent as well. The core for both bands was great songs and passionate singing from singers that you'd never mistake for anyone else.

Cheers folks.
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Old 06-21-2022, 12:43 PM   #7
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Re: DMB vs U2

Quote:
Originally Posted by grilldanmo View Post
This is funny to me in a good way.

I turned 50 this year. I remember when "classic rock" became a thing, as stations that were playing the edgier stuff from the '60s and '70s wanted to distinguish themselves from the stations playing '50s and '60 rock/pop...the "golden oldies". I also distinctly remember when U2 got scant airplay on MTV (mostly via I Will Follow, being "old" at that point) then the Gloria video came out and it was uphill for a decade after that.

U2 may now be see as classic rock, but they were part of something clearly new and different when they came out. My sister and I watched MTV pretty from the first day it aired until the mid-90s or so. Our dad was a music junky, so we were listening to music ALL of the time. He enjoyed the jazz and pop of his youth (including what his parents listened to), but also loved hearing/finding new music. MTV was (at the time) an obvious evolution of radio, but it made image far too important..."back when I was a boy..."

Anyway, I've fallen in and out of love a few times w/ U2. My wife and I were just talking the other day about how amazing Achtung Baby as the first real FULL studio follow-up to Joshua Tree. Rattle & Hum wasn't a fully realized studio album, more of an ambitious attempt to pay tribute to American musical heroes/legends and document their creative process (their Let It Be). The band was clearly still riding the understandable massive success of JT and several of the tunes, especially All I Want Is You, are coming from a similar place as the music on JT. But AB was astonishing...they really grappled w/ their success to that point and decided they needed to break their mold...and holy shit did they. For me Achtung is their best album by a LOT, and I love War, TUF, JT, & ATYCLB. Zooropa & Pop are definitely U2's ED & SU...not for me.

In the end, it's not a contest. You can compare/contrast any artists, but there's no objective measure of who's better. We can unequivocally state that U2 was more popular than DMB, but that's not a measure of quality. Both are world class bands, but it's interesting that one is made of new musicians searching for and finding their voice while the other was at least a pair of evolving world class musicians and at least two becoming excellent as well. The core for both bands was great songs and passionate singing from singers that you'd never mistake for anyone else.

Cheers folks.
This is a great take on the subject. Although younger, I agree with basically everything you said about their discography. Zooropa and Pop are not for me as well, though a few songs I've enjoyed live from those records: Stay, Staring at the Sun, Gone, Please.

Achtung is far and away their best, most ambitious album, and they absolutely nailed it. Taking the best of their sound from the 80s and pushing themselves further. Any U2 fan knows the struggles they had with the album until "One" unlocked everything else.

Comparing the two bands is unequivocally difficult because both are somewhat in classes of their own. U2 does massive world tours every 4-5 years. DMB plays the same sheds every summer.

And for what it's worth, I did quite enjoy the most recent U2 effort, and think they have more left to say as a band.
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Old 06-20-2022, 11:58 AM   #8
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Re: DMB vs U2

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Originally Posted by bowa36 View Post
I like early U2. I think they have a Big 3 just like DMB. War, The Unforgettable Fire, The Joshua Tree. I don't think either band is better than the other. Lillywhite produced War, and Daniel Lanois helped with Joshua Tree & Unforgettable Fire. Some cool overlap there
Achtung Baby would like a word. To me, that is U2's BTCS.
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Old 06-20-2022, 04:05 PM   #9
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Re: DMB vs U2

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Achtung Baby would like a word. To me, that is U2's BTCS.
I think Joshua Tree is. Achtung Baby is more like if Stand Up turned out to be much better (in the sense of experimentation with sound)
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Old 06-20-2022, 12:12 PM   #10
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Re: DMB vs U2

Both bands should stop making new music at this point, that's for sure.
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Old 06-20-2022, 12:32 PM   #11
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Re: DMB vs U2

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Both bands should stop making new music at this point, that's for sure.
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Old 06-20-2022, 12:19 PM   #12
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Re: DMB vs U2

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Old 06-20-2022, 04:20 PM   #13
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Re: DMB vs U2

So Achtung Baby is Everyday?
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:15 PM   #14
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Re: DMB vs U2

U2 has a MUCH better track record of good/great albums. And even the misfires have heart.
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:43 PM   #15
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U2 has a MUCH better track record of good/great albums. And even the misfires have heart.
I'm going to assume you're talking about Zooropa and Pop... And I agree! I actually love a lot of songs on both of those albums.
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:37 PM   #16
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Re: DMB vs U2

They are better than each other in a lot of areas
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:47 PM   #17
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They are better than each other in a lot of areas
I'd like to hear you expand on this
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Old 06-20-2022, 11:06 PM   #18
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Re: DMB vs U2

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I'd like to hear you expand on this

U2 is very good at coming up with songs that are almost like anthems, easy for everyone to latch onto quickly and sing along with, this is a significant skill in itself and especially when done as successfully as they have been. DMB's writing process is very different, I'd argue DMB historically has been at their best when they don't write with the intention that U2 sets out to have.
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:01 PM   #19
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Re: DMB vs U2

U2 is horrible.
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:45 PM   #20
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U2 is horrible.
Seeing that U2 has sold 6× as many albums as DMB I probably wouldn't go that far 😅
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:49 PM   #21
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Re: DMB vs U2

I'll take a quick stab at what TS is trying to say:

DMB, historically, has been more open to improv and jamming at shows, where U2 is very structured in the live setting, same setlist and solos every night.

U2, historically, has had much better pop sensibilities in terms of making music for as many people as possible, where DMB can be pretty niche in who their music can appeal to.
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Old 06-20-2022, 07:03 PM   #22
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Re: DMB vs U2

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I'll take a quick stab at what TS is trying to say:

DMB, historically, has been more open to improv and jamming at shows, where U2 is very structured in the live setting, same setlist and solos every night.

U2, historically, has had much better pop sensibilities in terms of making music for as many people as possible, where DMB can be pretty niche in who their music can appeal to.
That makes sense. U2 is easy listening for sure. I definitely didn't used to listen to anything like DMB before, but I wish more people would give them a chance. They filled a musical void that I didn't know needed filling.
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Old 06-21-2022, 05:18 PM   #23
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Re: DMB vs U2

Agree completely about seeing U2 SHOW, and the band puts on an amazing start-to-finish, high-production show: lights, video, and the band itself SOUNDS great. The comps they get to Coldplay (or, more fittingly, Coldplay TO U2) are apt: fantastic, high-energy, 2 hour shows with tons of hits, amazing production value, etc. Both have many HUGE hits:

U2: Coldplay:
Where streets Have No Name Yellow
Beautiful Day Clocks
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For Viva la Vida
One The Scientist
Mysterious Ways Fix You
With or Without You Paradise
on and on we could go...

DMB has more deep cuts, I suppose, though U2 and Coldplay also usually have 3-5 songs a night that are somewhat "deep"/non-radio tunes. But, the U2 and Coldplay don't have anywhere near the changing sets that DMB has. Which, is good and bad. Coldplay and U2 always give many, many crowd pleasers... I feel like they those 2 bands "play the hits" for sure, but I mean that as a plus.

Going back to U2 and DMB, their newer stuff certainly isn't as strong as their vintage stuff, but I will say U2's newish music (at least ALl That You Can't Leave Behind, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb, made 20-some years after they began) is much higher quality than DMB'd, and cetainly had more cultural buzz/mainstream appeal.
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Old 06-21-2022, 10:35 PM   #24
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DMB vs U2

I've always been a super U2 fan!
U2 and DMB inspire me in different ways, but wonderfully!

Apart from the albums, the coolest thing is that both have the best Showmen I've ever seen on stage!


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Old 06-22-2022, 02:49 AM   #25
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I've always been a super U2 fan!
U2 and DMB inspire me in different ways, but wonderfully!

Apart from the albums, the coolest thing is that both have the best Showmen I've ever seen on stage!


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Old 06-22-2022, 01:35 AM   #26
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Re: DMB vs U2

I love both bands. But, I also recognize why both bands can drive certain music fans nuts.

U2 is very earnest, ambitious, and full of heart. Often, it works splendidly. Occasionally, it falls flat (I thought their last tour was abysmal). They have a far better grasp of how to make an album than DMB, so even the weaker efforts are still cohesive and have a singular vision. When they're on live, it can be pretty much transcendent. Few songs pack a punch like "Where the Streets Have No Name" or "Bad". I'm one of those who prefers 90's U2 over any decade, and think Pop is an underrated masterpiece.

DMB's musicianship is superior to U2's, and they showed for the first decade they were capable of consistently producing great albums. I think eventually critics would have had to acquiesce and say "these guys are a great band", but once Everyday was released instead of LWS, that ship sailed. Unlike U2, which released a great album in three different decades (Joshua Tree, Achtung, All That You Can't Leave Behind), DMB just has the incredible run in the 90's.

I respect and love U2 because they always swing for the fences. Same goes for DMB because they are a consistently great live band and have given me so many fantastic memories. Sonically, there isn't much overlap. But, both bands have an ability to connect with listeners' emotions more than most other artists, and that intangible quality is probably why each has achieved their own level of great success.
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Old 06-22-2022, 03:17 AM   #27
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Re: DMB vs U2

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I love both bands. But, I also recognize why both bands can drive certain music fans nuts.

U2 is very earnest, ambitious, and full of heart. Often, it works splendidly. Occasionally, it falls flat (I thought their last tour was abysmal). They have a far better grasp of how to make an album than DMB, so even the weaker efforts are still cohesive and have a singular vision. When they're on live, it can be pretty much transcendent. Few songs pack a punch like "Where the Streets Have No Name" or "Bad". I'm one of those who prefers 90's U2 over any decade, and think Pop is an underrated masterpiece.

DMB's musicianship is superior to U2's, and they showed for the first decade they were capable of consistently producing great albums. I think eventually critics would have had to acquiesce and say "these guys are a great band", but once Everyday was released instead of LWS, that ship sailed. Unlike U2, which released a great album in three different decades (Joshua Tree, Achtung, All That You Can't Leave Behind), DMB just has the incredible run in the 90's.

I respect and love U2 because they always swing for the fences. Same goes for DMB because they are a consistently great live band and have given me so many fantastic memories. Sonically, there isn't much overlap. But, both bands have an ability to connect with listeners' emotions more than most other artists, and that intangible quality is probably why each has achieved their own level of great success.
You’re underselling how big Big Whiskey was for the band
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Old 06-23-2022, 08:58 AM   #28
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Re: DMB vs U2

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You’re underselling how big Big Whiskey was for the band
It was considered a nice return to form, and garnered some nice reviews. However, the 13 years since its release haven't aged it as well as the Big 3.

In fairness, though, the band never got great reviews consistently. I just feel like a completed LWS may have led to a re-appraisal of their music, with critics begrudgingly accepting just how good they were. Wishful thinking, maybe.
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Old 08-03-2022, 10:28 AM   #29
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Re: DMB vs U2

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It was considered a nice return to form, and garnered some nice reviews. However, the 13 years since its release haven't aged it as well as the Big 3.

In fairness, though, the band never got great reviews consistently. I just feel like a completed LWS may have led to a re-appraisal of their music, with critics begrudgingly accepting just how good they were. Wishful thinking, maybe.

I think it was actually their best reviewed album, produced 2 big hits for them and was nominated for Album of the Year. That's not nothing if not one of their most successful albums.

I know we've all seen the songs live more than any of us ever hoped to, but lets give it a fair shake. And as an album its pretty well done and still kicks pretty good today.
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Old 06-22-2022, 11:13 AM   #30
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Re: DMB vs U2

U2 puts on a helluva show. They're usually a spectacle in a way that DMB does not aspire to, in that sense.

For example, DMB has never and will never do anything like The Claw: https://pitchfork.com/news/u2s-the-c...utah-aquarium/

And that's OK! I don't think something like that would suit what DMB does
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