As you’ve probably heard, seen, and been annoyed by, U2 released their new album through an iTunes promotion earlier this year. Everyone got one, and a lot of people didn’t want it to begin with. Lots of artists have commented on the publicity stunt, this news section has talked about it enough, but it’s never going to stop. Never. Bono has already apologized for the stunt, and already taken back his apology almost immediately afterwards. When accused of devaluing music even further by Trent Reznor and others, he said
“No one values music more than me or the members of U2. To us, music is a sacrament. It’s a sacred thing. I think artists should be paid way more than they are, but the greatest way to serve your songs is to get them heard. I’m already paid too much. I’m a spoiled rotten, overpaid, over-nourished rock star. One of the reasons I haven’t been vocal about music artists [getting fair payment] is that I know I’m the wrong spokesperson for this. But I have to tell you, if I were starting a band now, aged 17 or 18, I would be very excited.”
He obviously missed the point. We’re sure he got paid his share, but the point wasn’t that he was getting paid, it’s that artists who are just starting out can’t afford to get a deal with iTunes to get their song on every account. It devalues music in that sense.
The point of criticizing the album is in the past, however, and artists have forgotten about the band’s stunt. Now is the time to joke about it, apparently. Taylor Hawkins, the drummer for the Foo Fighters told Australia’s The Music that the album “sounds like a fart”. His full quote said
“I mean, I think they probably thought it was gonna be a great idea, ‘Here’s the deal: everybody who has an iPhone, gets your record. And they get it for free!’ And they thought, probably, ‘Well that’s pretty awesome!’ but they didn’t really take into consideration the Big Brother feeling that kinda goes along with like, ‘[In menacing voice] You have the new U2 record’... You couldn’t get rid of it and they actually had to come up with an app to get rid of it, that’s horrible.
“I liked all the YouTube footage of all the crap: ‘What the fuck is this shit doin’ on my phone, dog? Get this shit off my phone, dog!’ Haha, it was like, HAHAHAHAhahaha."
"What happened to U2, man? I don’t think people are that hyped on them, “I don’t know that any of that new album has anything great on it. I listened to it once, but it’s so marred by that whole sort of, like I said, Orwellian, 1984 extreme that it just kinda sounds like a fart any way you listen to it.”
For someone as famous as he is, he certainly has a way with eloquently critiquing his peers. Really though, it’s hard not to laugh when anyone describes anything as being like a fart. Even then, Nickelback gets much more hate on the internet, just because it’s hilarious to hate on them. So, will this newly flopped stunt by U2 make them the successors to Nickelback? There can be only one... and only time will tell who comes out as the new inside joke of the internet.