The Joshua Tree – Wikipedia

1987 studio album by U2
The Joshua Tree is the fifth studio apartment album by Irish rock candy band U2. It was produced by Daniel Lanois and Brian Eno, and was released on 9 March 1987 on Island Records. In contrast to the ambient experiment of their 1984 free, The Unforgettable Fire, the band aimed for a harder-hitting heavy within the limitation of conventional sung structures on The Joshua Tree. The album is influenced by American and Irish roots music, and through sociopolitically conscious lyrics embellished with apparitional imagination, it contrasts the group ‘s antipathy for the “ real America ” with their fascination with the “ fabulous America ”. Inspired by american experiences, literature, and politics, U2 chose America as a theme for the record. Recording began in January 1986 in Ireland, and to foster a relax, creative standard atmosphere, the group chiefly recorded in two houses. several events during the sessions helped shape the conscious tone of the album, including the band ‘s engagement in the Conspiracy of Hope benefit concerts for Amnesty International, the death of roadie Greg Carroll, and lead singer Bono ‘s travels to Central America. recording was completed in November 1986 ; extra production continued into January 1987. Throughout the sessions, U2 sought a “ cinematic ” quality for the commemorate, one that would evoke a common sense of localization, in finical, the assailable spaces of the United States. They represented this in the sleeve photography depicting them in American defect landscapes.

The Joshua Tree received critical applaud, topped the charts in over 20 countries, and became the fastest-selling album in british history. According to Rolling Stone, the album increased the band ‘s stature “ from heroes to superstars ”. It produced the hit singles “ With or Without You “, “ I hush Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For “, and “ Where the Streets Have No Name “, the beginning two of which became the group ‘s only number-one singles in the US. The album won Grammy Awards for Album of the class and Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal in 1988. The group supported the phonograph record with the Joshua Tree Tour throughout 1987, during which they began to perform in stadiums for the beginning time in their career. frequently listed among the greatest albums of all prison term, The Joshua Tree is one of the universe ‘s best-selling albums, with over 25 million copies sold. U2 commemorated the record ‘s twentieth anniversary with a remastered re-release, and its thirtieth anniversary with concert tours and a reissue. In 2014, The Joshua Tree was selected for preservation in the US National Recording Registry, having been deemed “ culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant ” by the Library of Congress .

background [edit ]

prior to The Joshua Tree, U2 had released four studio albums and were an internationally successful band, peculiarly as a live act having toured every year in the 1980s. [ 1 ] The group ‘s stature and the public ‘s prediction for a new album grew following their 1984 record The Unforgettable Fire, their subsequent go, and their participation in Live Aid in 1985. U2 began writing new corporeal in mid-1985 following the unforgettable Fire Tour. [ 1 ] [ 2 ] U2 ‘s coach Paul McGuinness recounted that The Joshua Tree originated from the band ‘s “ capital romance ” with the United States, as the group had toured the nation for up to five months per year in the beginning one-half of the 1980s. [ 1 ] Leading up to the album sessions, leash vocalist Bono read the works of american writers such as Norman Mailer, Flannery O’Connor, and Raymond Carver so as to understand, in the words of Hot Press editor Niall Stokes, “ those on the fringes of the predict state, cut off from the american dream ”. [ 3 ] Following a September–October 1985 humanist visit to Egypt and Ethiopia with his wife Ali, [ 4 ] Bono said : “ spending time in Africa and seeing people in the pits of poverty, I however saw a very potent spirit in the people, a richness of heart I did n’t see when I came home … I saw the thwart child of the western global. I started thinking, ‘They may have a physical defect, but we ‘ve got other kinds of deserts. ‘ And that ‘s what attracted me to the desert as a symbol of some kind. ” [ 5 ] After recording vocals for Steven Van Zandt ‘s anti- apartheid stick out Sun City in August 1985, Bono made an extra contribution to the album in October that was inspired by his burgeoning interest in settle music. [ 4 ] While in New York, he spent fourth dimension with musicians Keith Richards and Mick Jagger, who played him blues and nation music. Bono was embarrassed by his lack of familiarity with the genres, as most of U2 ‘s musical cognition began with punk rocker rock candy in their youth in the mid-1970s. He realised that U2 “ had no tradition ” and felt as if they “ were from extinct space ”. [ 6 ] This inspired him to write the blues-influenced song “ Silver and Gold ”, which he recorded with Richards and Ronnie Wood and convinced Van Zandt to add to Sun City. [ 4 ] Until that time, U2 had been apathetic towards roots music, but after spend time with the Waterboys and mate Irish band Hothouse Flowers, they felt a smell of autochthonal irish music blending with american family music. [ 2 ] Nascent friendships with Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, and Richards encouraged Bono to look back to rock ‘s roots and to focus on building his skills as a songwriter and lyricist. [ 7 ] [ 8 ] He explained : “ I used to think that writing words was antique, so I sketched. I wrote words on the microphone. For The Joshua Tree, I felt the time had come to write words that meant something, out of my experience. ” [ 9 ] Dylan told Bono about his own debt to Irish music, [ 10 ] while Bono further demonstrated his interest in music traditions in his couple with Irish Celtic and folk music group Clannad on the track “ In a Lifetime “. [ 10 ]

“ We had experimented a set in the make of [ The Unforgettable Fire ]. We had done quite rotatory things … so we felt, going into The Joshua Tree, that possibly options were not a good thing, that limitations might be positive. And so we decided to work within the limitations of the song as a startle point. We thought : let ‘s actually write songs. We wanted the record to be less dim, open-ended, atmospheric and impressionistic. To make it more straightforward, concenter and concise. ”

— The Edge, on the band ‘s approach to The Joshua Tree[11]
U2 wanted to build on the textures of The Unforgettable Fire, but in contrast to that record ‘s frequently out-of-focus experiment, they sought a harder-hitting sound within the limitations of conventional song structures. [ 12 ] The group referred to this approach path as working within the “ basal color ” of rock music—guitar, bass, and drums. [ 13 ] Guitarist the Edge was more matter to in the european atmospherics of The Unforgettable Fire and was initially loath to follow Bono ‘s head to seek a more american english sound. [ 14 ] The Edge was finally convinced otherwise after discovering blues and state artists such as Howlin ‘ Wolf, Robert Johnson, Hank Williams, and Lefty Frizzell on American populace radio stations during the unforgettable Fire Tour. [ 2 ] Despite lacking a consensus on their musical management, the group members agreed that they felt disconnected from the prevailing synthpop and new brandish music of the fourth dimension, and they wanted to continue making music that contrasted with these genres. [ 1 ] In November 1985, [ 15 ] U2 moved into drummer Larry Mullen Jr. ‘s newly purchased home plate to work on material written during the unforgettable Fire Tour. This included demonstration that would evolve into “ With or Without You “, “ Red Hill Mining Town “, and “ Trip Through Your Wires ”, adenine well as a song called “ Womanfish ”. The Edge recalled it as a unmanageable period with a sense of “ going nowhere ”, although Bono was set on America as a root for the album. supplementary read sessions at STS Studios in Dublin with producer Paul Barrett saw the development of “ With or Without You ” and the genesis of “ Bullet the Blue Sky “. [ 2 ]

Recording and production [edit ]

Based on their success with producers Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois on The Unforgettable Fire, U2 wanted the couple to produce their raw album. [ 16 ] Mullen was excited about working with them again, as he felt the pair, Lanois in detail, were the isthmus ‘s first producers who “ in truth [ took ] an sake in the rhythm method of birth control section ”. [ 1 ] Mark “ Flood ” Ellis was selected to be the record engineer for the sessions, marking the inaugural fourth dimension he worked with U2. [ 14 ] The dance band were impressed by his study with Nick Cave, and Bono ‘s ally Gavin Friday recommended Flood based on their study experiences together when Friday was a extremity of the Virgin Prunes. [ 16 ] U2 asked Flood for a voice that was “ identical open … ambient … with a real sense of space of the environment you were in ”, which he thought was a very unusual request at that time. [ 1 ] Intending to release an album in recently 1986, U2 set up a studio in January of that year in Danesmoate House, a georgian house in Rathfarnham, Ireland, in the foothills of the Wicklow Mountains. [ 14 ] [ 17 ] The Edge had viewed the mansion months anterior while househunting with his wife and convinced the owner to rent it to the band. [ 17 ] Their plan was to find inspiration from the converted recording space and use it to musically create air, much like they did with Slane Castle for The Unforgettable Fire sessions in 1984. [ 14 ] A improvised operate room with tape machines, a mix comfort, and other outboard motor equipment was set up in Danesmoate ‘s dine room, with the adjacent draw board used for recording and performing. [ 14 ] The large doors separating the rooms were replaced with a looking glass blind, and to maintain a loosen “ non-studio ” air for the sessions, the control room was dubbed the “ lyric board ” and the recording space was called the “ band board ”. [ 16 ] Lanois ‘ scheme was to encourage the band members to have their parts worked out in promote and to capture as a lot of the perfume of a know band take as possible, without having the possibility of subsequent overdubbing on which to fall back. [ 18 ] [ 19 ] This was a change for U2, who previously recorded each instrumental role individually and then layered them into the mix. [ 13 ] To support his set about of having all the band members recording in a room together, Lanois eschewed having them wear headphones in favor of using monitor speakers due to their power ; Mullen and bassist Adam Clayton used two each. To help in sound isolation, gobos were built in the withdraw room, although the production staff still faced issues with audio spill from the monitor speakers. Lanois said that due to the setup, “ you have to make a commitment to what you put down and either use it or throw it all away. ” This record frame-up was duplicated at subsequent locations during the album sessions. [ 18 ] U2 ‘s initial time at Danesmoate was spent recording and refine “ extensive show ” that the Edge anticipated could turn into final back tracks. They began with their usual songwriting methods of sorting through tapes from soundcheck jams, working through Bono ‘s lyric book, and recording jam sessions. [ 16 ] The sessions saw the group ‘s songwriting beginning to evolve ; not all corporeal was being worked out as a ring, but quite Bono and the Edge often brought basic sung ideas to Mullen and Clayton. [ 21 ] The group were beginning joined at Danesmoate by Eno, with Flood and fellow engineer Dave Meegan recording their jams. Meegan said of Eno ‘s participation : “ normally he was in first every morning and he ‘d start some crafty sequence on his DX-7 [ synthesist ] —it would be precisely like a cello line with no intentions of ever staying everlastingly, barely something to inspire people when they walked into the room. ” [ 22 ] One of the first songs worked on was “ Heartland ”, which originated during The Unforgettable Fire sessions and was late released on the band ‘s 1988 album, Rattle and Hum. [ 14 ] The arrangements for “ With or Without You ” and “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For “ were completed early in the Danesmoate sessions, giving the ring the assurance to experiment. [ 16 ] Eno and Lanois intentionally worked with the band at alternate times—one producer for a week or two, followed by the other. The producers encouraged an interest in older songs, specially american roots music. More contemporary references included the textural guitar function of the Smiths and My Bloody Valentine. The band ‘s musical vocabulary had improved after their former album, facilitating communication and collaboration with the production team. [ 16 ] The band found Danesmoate to have a very creative atmosphere, but according to the Edge, they “ just could n’t settle in ”. The big pull room, with a improbable ceiling and wooden floors, created an “ ear-splitting ” drum sound that caused issues for the group. [ 23 ] Lanois had a higher impression of the house, saying : “ It was loudly, but it was truly full loudly, substantial dense, very musical. In my opinion it was the most rock and wind room of the fortune. ” According to him, “ the Danesmoate sessions were the backbone of the key of the record—we got a bunch of the drums done in there. ” He thought that the house sounded better than Slane Castle, and he was particularly impress with the drawing room ‘s “ low mid-range … where the music lives ”, a property that he believes was a major component in the success of The Joshua Tree. [ 16 ]
Over the course of recording The Joshua Tree, the set doubly paused to participate in benefit concerts. On 17 May 1986, U2 performed at Self Aid in Dublin. [ 24 ] Intended to help alleviate Ireland ‘s unemployment crisis by raising funds and subcontract pledges, the event was harshly criticised in the media for taking imperativeness off the irish politics to resist Margaret Thatcher ‘s economic policies. The ring in particular were labelled hypocrites for their engagement. [ 25 ] Their appearance included a binding of Bob Dylan ‘s “ Maggie ‘s grow “, reinterpreted as a criticism of Thatcher. [ 24 ] Hot Press ‘ Niall Stokes called their performance “ the blackest and most ferocious jell of their integral career ”. [ 25 ] In June 1986, U2 embarked on the six-show conspiracy of Hope tour for Amnesty International, [ 24 ] halting the album ‘s record sessions for about two months. [ 26 ] Rather than distract the band, the go invigourated their new music and provided extra focus on what they wanted to say. [ 27 ] For Clayton, the tour validated the “ tenderness of capacity ” and their attempts to capture the “ bleakness and avarice of America under Ronald Reagan “. [ 27 ] The isthmus used soundchecks on the go to test out diverse guitar compositions they had. [ 28 ] Meegan believed that U2 ‘s time with the other artists on the go affected their own voice : “ Their musical heroes were bleeding into the music and they were n’t embarrassed by it, which gave them a lot of space to work in. ” [ 25 ] On 3 July, the band experienced a tragedy when Greg Carroll, their roadie and Bono ‘s personal adjunct, was killed in a motorcycle accident in Dublin. The 26-year-old ‘s death overwhelmed the U2 administration, and the band travelled to his native New Zealand to attend his traditional Māori funeral ; the experience inspired the lyrics to “ One Tree Hill “. [ 29 ] After the funeral, [ 30 ] Bono and his wife visited Nicaragua and El Salvador, where they saw firsthand the distress of peasants affected by political conflicts and US military intervention, experiences which formed the footing of the lyrics for “ Bullet the Blue Sky ” and “ Mothers of the Disappeared “. [ 31 ] On 1 August 1986, U2 regrouped in Dublin to resume work on the album and begin the record stage proper. [ 14 ] During this more intense phase of the sessions, the group began to work at the Edge ‘s newly purchased house, Melbeach, in seaside Monkstown. [ 32 ] Lanois said of Melbeach, “ That was less of a rock ‘n ‘ roll room but we made it study. I think there were a fortune of headaches, isolating people and having to build baffles around the station. ” [ 16 ] The Edge called the house “ more somber ” but said it had a “ solid unpretentious timbre that seemed to hold the department of energy in ”. [ 33 ] “ Mothers of the Disappeared ” and “ Bullet the Blue Sky ” were among the songs that evolved at Melbeach. Lanois said that most of the record was done there, [ 16 ] and that it was the preferable placement for mixing. [ 34 ] Writing and recording alternated between the two houses and Windmill Lane Studios. [ 14 ] In late August during Hurricane Charley, U2 were visited at Danesmoate by Robbie Robertson, the former guitarist of the Band. Robertson was in Ireland to complete his self-titled debut alone album that he had begun with Lanois. in concert, U2 and Robertson recorded the tracks “ Sweet Fire of Love ” and “ Testimony ”, both of which appear on Robertson ‘s album. [ 16 ] [ 35 ] [ 17 ] As the sessions progressed, U2 attempted to record a desirable assume of the sung “ Where the Streets Have No Name “, which began as a demonstration that the Edge had composed by himself. however, the group struggled with the chord and time key signature shifts, [ 32 ] forcing significant “ screwdriver work ” to fix a record version of the song. [ 1 ] Eno estimated approximately 40 % of the time spent on The Joshua Tree was dedicated to that song alone. [ 36 ] During takes, Lanois used a pointer and a blackboard to help walk the ring through the song ‘s changes. [ 16 ] In an attempt to force the group to start afresh, Eno intended to “ stage an accident ” whereby the song ‘s tapes would be erased. According to Flood, engineer Pat McCarthy had to restrain Eno to prevent this from happening. ultimately, the erasure never occurred. [ 1 ] Another expression of the album that required re-work was Bono ‘s lyrics. The singer had another fixed of lyrics for most of the record, but the other group members were dissatisfied with them, forcing rewrites. [ 37 ] Lanois said the production team extensively screened Bono ‘s lyrics and offered suggestions, as many lines did not sound equally dependable when whistle against a back track as they did when written down. [ 18 ] Bono ‘s revised lyrics were described as “ absolutely stunning ” by Meegan, who believed that the insecurity the singer felt from having his function critiqued further motivated him. [ 37 ] After a creative forge in October resulted in modern song ideas, [ 35 ] Bono proposed that the group release a doubling album. [ 38 ] The Edge said : “ There would have been two records, depending on which songs we decided to finish. There was this one album, the ‘blues ‘ album that Bono was talking about, and another, much more ‘European ‘, which is kind of the way I was led. ” [ 26 ] Eno cautioned the group about pursuing the material, telling the edge : “ I know that any one of these new ideas is dear adequate to make the record, but we have to draw the lineage somewhere. If we even consider any of them we ‘ll calm be here in three months time. ” [ 33 ] U2 relented, shelving the new songs to avoid missing their deadline to complete the album. [ 35 ] Recording for The Joshua Tree wrapped up in November 1986. Rough mixes had been created throughout the sessions after each song was recorded to, in Lanois ‘ words, take “ snapshots along the way … because sometimes you go excessively far ”. [ 16 ] The Edge explained that the placement and production of each song was approached individually and that while there was a strong uniform direction, they were prepared to “ sacrifice some continuity to get the rewards of following each birdcall to a stopping point ”. [ 39 ]
A three-storey stone-faced building. The first level is decorated with colourful graffiti. (pictured in 2008). Parts of the album were recorded and mixed at Windmill Lane Studios The concluding weeks were a delirious rush to finish, with the band and production crowd all suffering from debilitation. Eno and Flood had minimal engagement with the final mixes, [ 16 ] as they had other commitments. Facing understaffing, [ 18 ] in recently December, U2 hired Steve Lillywhite, producer of their beginning three albums, to remix the electric potential singles and make them more appealing to commercial radio receiver. [ 32 ] [ 40 ] His eleventh-hour presence and changes caused discontentment among the production crowd, including Eno and Lanois. [ 32 ] Of the approximately 30 songs that were created during the album ‘s sessions, 11 were selected for the concluding track number. [ 41 ] Lillywhite mixed four songs with engineer Mark Wallis on an SSL desk at Windmill Lane Studios. [ 16 ] [ 35 ] [ 18 ] At the same time, Lanois, McCarthy, and Meegan mixed seven songs at Melbeach on a 24-track AMEK 2500 mixing desk ; all three were required to operate the console due to the miss of mix automation. [ 16 ] [ 18 ] On the night before the 15 January 1987 deadline set by Island Records to complete the record, the set and the crew completed mix. [ 18 ] [ 42 ] As they worked at Melbeach, [ 42 ] Lillywhite ‘s wife, singer Kirsty MacColl, volunteered to set the running rate for the album. The band told her to put “ Where the Streets Have No name ” first and “ Mothers of the Disappeared ” last, with the rest sequenced according to her predilection. [ 32 ] Bono said of MacColl ‘s contribution, “ Your promise for your album is that it will constantly be greater than the summarize of its parts. It was n’t happening for The Joshua Tree and she came in and she organized it and it worked as an antique album : a begin, middle and end. ” [ 43 ] Around 2 am, barely seven hours before the album was due to Island for overcome, the Edge tried to convince Lillywhite to allow him to add backing vocals to “ Where the Streets Have No name ”, but he was denied. In the good morning, Meegan and Lillywhite flew with the album ‘s tapes to Island ‘s offices in Hammersmith, London. [ 42 ] Following the completion of the album proper, U2 returned to the studio with Meegan and McCarthy to complete the modern material they had shelved in October. [ 33 ] [ 44 ] These tracks, which included “ Walk to the Water ”, “ aglow Times ( Hold on to Love ) ”, and “ spanish Eyes ”, were completed as B-sides for the aforethought singles. [ 44 ] The Edge said that with no producers about and “ without the sense of meaning that imbued the album sessions ”, the group worked quickly and productively, preventing the songs from, in his opinion, sounding overworked. [ 33 ] The song “ Sweetest Thing “ was left off the album and released as a B-side, as the band felt it was incomplete and did not fit with the other songs. [ 45 ] They late expressed repent that it had not been completed for The Joshua Tree. The racetrack was re-recorded as a single for the group ‘s 1998 compilation The Best of 1980–1990. [ 46 ] U2 agreed that one track, “ Birdland ”, was besides hard for a B-side and they withheld it for a future album release. [ 44 ] In 2007, a re-recorded translation of the birdcall, retitled “ Wave of Sorrow ( Birdland ) ”, was included with the twentieth anniversary edition of the album. [ 47 ] After completing The Joshua Tree, Bono said that he was “ as please with the read as I can ever be pleased with a read ”, calling The Joshua Tree their most complete album since their introduction. [ 8 ] Clayton bought Danesmoate House in 1987 and made it his home. [ 48 ]

composition [edit ]

music [edit ]

U2 is credited with composing all of The Joshua Tree ‘s music. [ 51 ] The album ‘s sound disembowel from american and irish roots music more than the group ‘s previous albums, following the advocate and influence of Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, and Keith Richards. “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For “ has strong gospel influences, with Bono whistle of apparitional doubt in an upper cross-file and Eno, Lanois, and the Edge providing choir-like backing vocals. [ 50 ] The behind piano-based ballad “ Running to Stand still “ show traits of folk music and acoustic blues in the track ‘s slide acoustic guitar and harmonica. [ 50 ] “ Trip Through Your Wires ”, another birdcall on which Bono plays harmonica, was described by Niall Stokes as a “ bluesy romp ”. [ 52 ] Summarising the stylistic commission, Chicago Tribune diarist Joshua Klein writes that the album “ showed how U2 ‘s compulsion with american english roots flavored its art-rock “. [ 53 ] The Edge ‘s guitar act on The Joshua Tree is characteristic of what came to be his trademark sound. His minimalist style sharply contrasted with the stress placed on virtuosity and focal ratio by heavy alloy in the 1980s. The Edge views melodious notes as “ expensive ”, preferring to play as few of them as potential and to rather focus on dim-witted parts that serve the moods of the songs. [ 49 ] Much of this was achieved with a stay effect, contributing to a chime, echo-laden sound. [ 54 ] For example, the riff in the presentation of the hatchway track “ Where the Streets Have No Name “ is a recur six-note arpeggio, with delay used to repeat notes. [ 49 ] The riffs to “ I silent Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ” and “ With or Without You “ besides prominently consumption delay, with Bono likening the guitar hook from the former track to “ chrome bells ”. [ 50 ] The Edge continued to employ the ambient techniques of guitar play that he used on The Unforgettable Fire ; for “ With or Without You ”, he used a prototype of the Infinite Guitar to add layers of hold notes, an approach he first took on his 1986 solo album, the Captive soundtrack. [ 55 ] On early songs, his guitar play is more aggressive ; “ passing “ was described by Colin Hogg as a “ decidedly chilling … guitar-driven barrage ”, [ 56 ] while Andrew Mueller said the guitar sounds from “ Bullet the Blue Sky “ evoke images of combatant planes. [ 57 ] The Edge developed the harsh, feedback -charged guitar share for the latter birdcall at Bono ‘s instruction to “ put El Salvador through an amplifier “, after Bono returned angry from a visit to the war-torn nation. [ 58 ] Bono besides contributed to songwriting on guitar ; the spanish guitar tune in “ Mothers of the Disappeared “ originated from a sung that he wrote in Ethiopia to teach children about basic hygiene. [ 32 ] much like on past records, Bono exhibits an expressive, open-throated vocal music delivery, [ 59 ] which many critics described as “ passionate ”. [ 56 ] [ 60 ] [ 61 ] Spin found that the group ‘s exploration of roots music resulted in Bono ‘s style elaborate, saying that he “ commands the wide whisper-to-shout scope of blues mannerisms ”. [ 62 ] Bono attributes this maturation to “ loosening up ”, “ learn [ ing ] early voices ”, and employing more restraint in his singing. [ 9 ] His vocals became, in the words of Thom Duffy, more “ dynamic ” than they had been on former records. [ 63 ] On “ Where the Streets Have No name ”, his voice varies greatly in its timbre ( as writer Mark Butler describes, “ he sighs ; he moans ; he grunts ; he exhales audibly ; he allows his voice to crack ” ) and its clock by his custom of rubato to slenderly offset the sing notes from the all in. [ 64 ] For author Susan Fast, “ With or Without You ” marks the beginning traverse on which he “ extended his vocal range downward in an appreciable way ”. [ 65 ]

Lyrics [edit ]

A desert with a cloudy blue sky. Sporadic weedy plants are growing in the dirt, and a mountain range is visible in the background. The mental effigy of an american abandon was inspirational to the group during the album ‘s creation. Bono is credited as the album ‘s sole lyricist. [ 51 ] Thematically, the album juxtaposes antipathy towards the United States against the band ‘s deeply fascination with the state, its candid spaces, freedoms, and ideals. Anger is directed particularly at the perceived avarice of the Ronald Reagan administration and its foreign policy in Central America. [ 66 ] Bono said, “ I started to see two Americas, the mythic America and the real America ”, [ 67 ] hence the album ‘s working title, The Two Americas. [ 1 ] Having toured the US extensively in the past, the group were inspired by the area ‘s geography. As such, the desert, rain, dust, and water appear as lyrical motifs throughout the record. [ 68 ] [ 69 ] In many cases, the abandon is used as a metaphor for “ spiritual drought ”. [ 67 ] One track that chiefly represents these themes is “ In God ‘s Country “, which critic Barbara Jaeger interpreted as addressing America ‘s role as the “ promise land ”. [ 70 ] Clayton explained the impact of the defect imagination : “ The desert was vastly inspirational to us as a mental double for this record. Most people would take the desert on face value and think it ‘s some kind of bare home, which of course is true. But in the right skeleton of judgment, it ‘s besides a very positive trope, because you can actually do something with lacuna analyze, which is efficaciously what the abandon is. ” [ 71 ]

“ I love being there, I love America, I love the feel of the wide open spaces, I love the deserts, I love the mountain ranges, I even love the cities. thus having fallen in love with America over the years that we ‘ve been there on enlistment, I then had to ‘deal with ‘ America and the way it was affecting me, because America ‘s having such an consequence on the global at the here and now. On this read I had to deal with it on a political flat for the first time, if in a subtle way. ”

—Bono, on the album ‘s thematic inspirations, in 1987 [ 8 ]
political and social concerns were the footing for respective tracks. Bono wrote the lyrics for “ Bullet the Blue Sky ” after visiting El Salvador during the Salvadoran Civil War and witnessing how the conflict between rebels and the US-backed politics affected local civilians. [ 31 ] During the mid-song speak passage, he talks of a serviceman with a “ face red like a rose on a irritant bush-league ”, a reference book to Reagan. [ 72 ] [ 73 ] Bono ‘s trip besides inspired “ Mothers of the Disappeared ”, after he met members of COMADRES —the Mothers of the Disappeared—a group of women whose children were killed or “ melt ” during the civil war at the hands of the local anesthetic government. [ 35 ] The 1984 UK mining fall inspired the lyrics for “ Red Hill Mining Town “, which Bono wrote from the perspective of a match affected by the fall. The floor of a heroin -addicted couple was the footing for “ Running to Stand still ”, which Bono set in the Ballymun Flats residential towers in Dublin near which he was raised. The buildings are referenced in the lyric “ I see seven towers / But I only see one way out ”. [ 5 ] For “ Where the Streets Have No name ”, he wrote the lyrics in reply to the idea that, in Belfast, a person ‘s religion and income can be deduced based on the street they live on. [ 8 ] “ exit ” portrays the thoughts of a psychotic killer, [ 32 ] although Clayton suggested that the credit line “ He saw the hands that build up could besides pull down ” is besides a jab at the US government ‘s conflicting roles in international relations. [ 74 ] Bono described 1986 as “ an fabulously bad year ” for him, [ 14 ] which was reflected in the lyrics. His marriage was under tune, in separate due to the album ‘s hanker pregnancy period, the band were criticised by the irish media for their involvement in Self Aid, and his personal adjunct Greg Carroll was killed in a motorcycle accident. [ 39 ] Bono said, “ That ‘s why the desert attracted me as an visualize. That year was very a desert for us. ” [ 31 ] “ With or Without You ” was written while he was struggling to reconcile his wanderlust as a musician with his domestic responsibilities. [ 55 ] “ One Tree Hill “, named after a volcanic vertex in Carroll ‘s native New Zealand, describes how Bono felt at Carroll ‘s funeral. [ 67 ] [ 30 ] The album is dedicated to his memory. [ 51 ] The group ‘s religious faith was a source of inspiration for many lyrics. On “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ”, Bono affirms this faith but sings of apparitional doubt ( “ I believe in Kingdom Come ” … “ But I however have n’t found what I ‘m looking for ” ). [ 51 ] [ 75 ] Some critics surmised that the invest Bono is referring to on “ Where the Streets Have No name ” is Heaven. [ 76 ] [ 77 ] These two songs were singled out by some critics as show that the band was on a “ spiritual bay ”. [ 70 ] [ 76 ] Hot Press editor program Niall Stokes and Richard Harrington of The Washington Post interpreted “ With or Without You ” in both quixotic and spiritual manners. [ 11 ] [ 78 ] Biblical references are made on other songs like “ Bullet the Blue Sky ” ( “ Jacob wrestled the saint “, images of arouse and brimstone ) and “ In God ‘s country ” ( “ I stand with the sons of Cain “ ). [ 51 ] Thom Duffy interpreted the album as an exploration of the “ doubt and pain of a apparitional pilgrimage through a bleak and harsh worldly concern ”. [ 63 ]

packaging and deed [edit ]

The photograph on the album cover was shot at Zabriskie Point Designed by Steve Averill, [ 51 ] the album sleeve was based on U2 ‘s request to depict the read ‘s “ imagination, and cinematic location ” in the desert. [ 32 ] Since the album ‘s probationary titles were The Desert Songs [ 79 ] and The Two Americas, [ 1 ] the initial concept for the sleeve was to represent where the desert met civilization. [ 1 ] The group decided early in the creative march to photograph in the US, contrasting with all of their former albums, which had been shot in Ireland. [ 68 ] They asked their photographer Anton Corbijn to search for locations in the US that would capture their ideas. [ 32 ] A week anterior to the photograph shoot, he travelled to the US to compile a list of locations. [ 80 ] Over several days in December 1986, [ 35 ] [ 81 ] U2 travelled with Corbijn and Averill on a bus around the Mojave Desert for a photograph shoot. [ 32 ] The group stayed in small hotels and shoot in the desert landscape, beginning at Reno, Nevada, before moving to locations in California such as the ghost township of Bodie, the Harmony Hotel in Twentynine Palms, Zabriskie Point, Death Valley Junction, and other sites in Death Valley. [ 80 ] [ 81 ] [ 82 ] Corbijn rented a bird’s-eye camera to capture more of the abandon landscapes, but having no prior experience with the camera, he was unfamiliar with how to focus it. This led to him focusing on the background and leaving the ring slenderly out of focus. Corbijn said, “ fortunately there was a set of idle. ” [ 31 ] Averill filmed portions of the trip with an 8 millimeter film television camera. The photograph shoots took home in the mornings and evenings, with mid-days spend travel and on preparation. [ 80 ] Corbijn subsequently recounted that the chief mind of the shoot was to juxtapose “ man and environment, the Irish in America ”. [ 83 ] Averill said of their photographic set about, “ What I was trying to do with the way we shot the pictures and framed the traverse was to suggest the landscape vision and cinematic approach that was taken to the record. ” [ 80 ]
On the evening after the first gear day ‘s shoot, Corbijn told the band about Joshua trees ( Yucca brevifolia ), hardy and distorted plants in the deserts of the american Southwest, and he suggested their function on the sleeve. [ 1 ] Bono was pleased to discover the religious significance of the plant ‘s etymology ; [ 79 ] according to Mormon caption, early settlers named the establish after the Old Testament prophet Joshua, as the tree ‘s stretching branches reminded them of Joshua raising his hands in prayer. [ 84 ] The follow day, Bono declared that the album should be titled The Joshua Tree. [ 79 ] That morning, [ 80 ] while driving on Route 190 near Darwin, they spotted a lone-standing tree in the desert. [ 17 ] Corbijn had been hoping to find a single tree, as he thought it would result in better photograph than if he shot the band amongst a group of trees. [ 79 ] They stopped the bus and photographed with the lone plant for about 20 minutes, something the Edge called “ fairly ad-lib ”. [ 66 ] Despite shooting in the desert, the group dealt with cold weather during parts of the trip. Bono explained, “ it was freezing and we had to take our coats off so it would at least look like a defect. That ‘s one of the reasons we look indeed grim. ” [ 85 ] Regarding the serious spirit of the images, Corbijn said, “ I guess people felt they took themselves excessively seriously. It was decidedly the most serious, I think, that you can photograph a dance band. You could n’t go any far down that lineage unless you start photographing graves. ” [ 31 ]

The Joshua Tree takes its claim from the tree that somehow survives in the desert, and much of its material suggests an attempt, within the fruitlessness, to quench a profoundly apparitional hunger. ”

—Don McLeese of Chicago Sun-Times, on the album title as a metaphor for the songs [ 86 ]
For the vinyl phonograph record release, Corbijn originally wanted to have a nip of the Joshua tree on the front of the sleeve, with U2 in a sequel of the photograph on the back. [ 1 ] Averill tried out a concept with merely the landscape on the presence that he said resembled a “ sleep together electronic countermeasures read ”. [ 80 ] ultimately, divide photograph were used for each side of the sleeve ; an image of the group at Zabriskie Point was placed on the presence, [ 35 ] while an image of them with the tree appears on the back cover. [ 68 ] For the movement blanket, Averill said that the frame of the band in the left half of the photograph was meant to evoke the filming of film directors John Ford and Sergio Leone. The center foldout showed an persona of U2 with the Joshua tree in the middle ; a mirror used by them to check their appearance was mistakenly left in human body. Since the compact disk was a relatively newly format at the time, the creative team decided to experiment with the album report, selecting different cover images for each format on which the album was released ; the master covenant magnetic disk acquittance used a bleary, distorted photograph of the isthmus, while the cassette used a clear, but alternate photograph. Later certificate of deposit reissues used the LP photograph. [ 87 ] Rolling Stone said that the album ‘s entitle and the images of the tree befit a criminal record concerned with “ resilience in the face of dead social and political forlornness, a phonograph record steeped in religious imagination ”. [ 88 ] In 1991, the cartridge holder ranked The Joshua Tree at number 97 on its tilt of the “ 100 Greatest Album Covers of All Time ”. [ 89 ] The corner photographed for the sleeve fell around 2000, [ 90 ] however the site remains a popular tourist attraction for U2 fans. [ 17 ] One person inserted a plaque into the ground reading, “ Have you found what you ‘re looking for ? “, in reference to the album ‘s chase “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ”. [ 91 ] It is a coarse misconception that the locate is within Joshua Tree National Park, when in fact it is over 200 miles away from the park. [ 92 ]

release [edit ]

fair anterior to the release of The Joshua Tree, Bono was stricken with a sudden panic about the quality of the completed album. He said that he contemplated calling the production plants to holy order a stop of the record ‘s weight-lift, but he ultimately held off. [ 93 ] Island Records spent over $ 100,000 on store displays advertising the album ; president of the united states Lou Maglia called it “ the most complete trade attempt always assembled ”. [ 94 ] The Joshua Tree was released on 9 March 1987, [ 94 ] with an initial dispatch of 300,000 copies in the US. [ 95 ] It was the first new release to be made available on the pack phonograph record, vinyl record, and cassette tape formats on the lapp date. [ 94 ] Record stores in Britain and Ireland opened at midnight to accommodate the large number of fans who had queued outside to buy the album. [ 31 ] [ 96 ]
U2 performing on a concert stage. The Edge and Adam Clayton, playing guitars, flank Bono in the foreground, while Larry Mullen, Jr. is behind a drum kit in the background on the left side. The Joshua Tree brought U2 (pictured in 2017) a new level of stardom internationally. The success ofbrought U2a new level of stardom internationally. The Joshua Tree debuted on the UK Albums Chart on 21 March 1987 at number one with 235,000 copies sold in its opening week, making it the fastest-selling album in UK history to that point. [ 97 ] [ 98 ] It received a platinum authentication in the UK within 48 hours of being released. [ 99 ] The album exhausted two weeks atop the UK Albums Chart [ 100 ] and spent its foremost 28 weeks within the top ten. [ 101 ] In total, it charted in the UK for 201 weeks, ranking it among the longest-charting albums in the nation ‘s history. [ 100 ] On the US Billboard Top Pop Albums chart, the album debuted on 4 April 1987 at number seven, [ 102 ] the highest debut for a studio album in the US in about seven years. [ 103 ] Three weeks late, it reached act one, [ 99 ] becoming the group ‘s first album to top the charts in the US. [ 104 ] It remained at that put for nine consecutive weeks, [ 105 ] the band ‘s longest number-one reign on the chart [ 106 ] and the second-longest predominate in the US that year. [ 107 ] The album spent a sum of 120 weeks on the Billboard Top Pop Albums, [ 108 ] 35 of them in the top ten. [ 103 ] On 13 May 1987, the Recording Industry Association of America ( RIAA ) certified the album double-platinum. [ 109 ] All of the group ‘s previous albums re-entered the Billboard Top Pop Albums graph in 1987. [ 110 ] In Canada, the album debuted at issue 51 on the RPM Top 100 Albums chart on 21 March 1987, [ 111 ] and climbed to number one precisely two weeks late. [ 112 ] Within 14 days of unblock, it sold 300,000 units in Canada and was certified triple-platinum. [ 113 ] The Joshua Tree besides topped the charts in Austria, Switzerland, New Zealand, and Sweden. [ 114 ] In total, the album reached number one in over 20 countries. [ 17 ] Rolling Stone said that the album increased the band ‘s stature “ from heroes to superstars ”. [ 115 ] It was the beginning album by any artist to sell one million copies on compact disk in the US. [ 94 ] U2 were featured on the cover of the 27 April 1987 issue of Time, which declared them “ Rock ‘s Hottest Ticket ” ; [ 116 ] they were barely the one-fourth rock ‘n’ roll isthmus to appear on the magazine ‘s cover, following the Beatles, the Band, and the Who. [ 117 ] “ With or Without You ” was released as the lead single on 21 March 1987, with the B-sides “ Luminous Times ( Hold on to Love ) ” and “ Walk to the Water ”. [ 118 ] The individual promptly topped the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the dance band ‘s first number-one reach in America. [ 16 ] The song topped the singles chart in Canada, [ 119 ] while reaching count four in the UK [ 97 ] and number two in the Netherlands. [ 114 ] The group originally planned to use “ Red Hill Mining Town ” as the second one. [ 120 ] however, the group were infelicitous with the music video filmed by Neil Jordan, [ 16 ] [ 121 ] and Bono had difficulty singing the song. [ 122 ] ultimately, the group canceled the single. [ 120 ] [ 123 ] alternatively, “ I calm Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ” was chosen as the second gear individual, and it was released in May 1987 with the tracks “ spanish Eyes ” and “ Deep in the Heart ” as B-sides. [ 124 ] Like its predecessor, it topped the Hot 100, giving U2 back-to-back number-one singles in the US. [ 16 ] The individual ailing at number six in the UK, [ 97 ] Canada, [ 119 ] and the Netherlands. [ 114 ] By May, sales of the album surpassed 7 million copies worldwide. [ 125 ] “ Where the Streets Have No name ” was released in August 1987 as the third single, with “ fresh thing ”, “ Silver and Gold ”, and “ Race Against Time ” as B-sides. [ 126 ] The single reached number seven in the Netherlands, [ 114 ] number four on the UK Singles Chart, and count 13 in the US. [ 16 ] The album ‘s first three singles all topped the irish Singles Charts, [ 127 ] while charting within the top 20 of the singles charts in the UK, [ 97 ] the US, [ 128 ] Canada, [ 119 ] New Zealand, [ 129 ] and the Netherlands. [ 114 ] “ In God ‘s Country ” was released as a fourth single entirely in North America in November 1987, [ 130 ] peaking at number 44 on the Hot 100 [ 128 ] and number 48 as an meaning single in the UK. [ 97 ] “ One Tree Hill ” was released as a fourth single in Australia and New Zealand in March 1988, [ 131 ] [ 132 ] and having been written for the New Zealand-native Carroll, it reached total one in his home country. [ 129 ] By the conclusion of 1988, The Joshua Tree had sold more than 14 million copies worldwide. [ 133 ] It was the ninth-best-selling album in the UK during the 1980s. [ 134 ] In 1996, Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab remastered the album and released it as a special gold certificate of deposit. This edition rectified the faulty track divide between “ One Tree Hill ” and “ exit ” that affected some cadmium releases ; the placid finale that concludes “ One Tree Hill ” had previously been included in the same racetrack as “ exit ”. [ 135 ] [ 136 ] Following its thirtieth anniversary reprint, The Joshua Tree re-enter the Billboard 200 chart the week of 8 June 2017, climbing to number 16—its highest position on the graph since 13 February 1988. That week, it shifted 27,000 album-equivalent units, 23,000 of which were sales, making it the album ‘s highest-selling workweek in the US since 3 January 1993. [ 137 ]

critical reception [edit ]

The Joshua Tree received critical acclaim, and the best review of U2 ‘s career to that point. Steve Pond of Rolling Stone wrote, “ For a band that ‘s always specialized in inspirational, epic gestures—a band absolutely determined to be Important— The Joshua Tree could be the big one, and that ‘s precisely what it sounds like. ” [ 88 ] The review described the album ‘s sound as “ wed [ ding ] the diverse textures of The Unforgettable Fire to fully formed songs, many of them arsenic aggressive as the hits on War “. [ 88 ] Steve Morse of The Boston Globe echoed these sentiments in his revue, submit, “ It ‘s another spiritual build up report, enwrapped in music that strikes a healthy balance between the luxuriance of their last album, 1984 ‘s The Unforgettable Fire, and the more volcanic rock of their early years. ” morse called it “ their most ambitious work to date ” and the “ most reward rock criminal record of the newfangled year ”. [ 76 ] John McCready of NME praised the album as “ a better and audacious record than anything else that ‘s likely to appear in 1987 … It ‘s the sound of people still trying, still looking … ” [ 146 ] Thom Duffy of the Orlando Sentinel said the songs have “ exultant baron ” that, “ like the Joshua Tree ‘s branches, stretch up in stark line to their barren musical surroundings on rock ‘n’ roll radio ”. He praised the musicianship of the group members, calling Bono ‘s vocals “ wrenching ”, the rhythm segment of Mullen and Clayton “ razor-sharp ”, and the Edge ‘s guitar play “ never … better ”. [ 63 ] Colin Hogg of The New Zealand Herald called The Joshua Tree “ the most compel collection of music yet from a band that has cut its career with passionate, exciting slashes ”. It judged that the phonograph record ‘s “ exponent lies in its constraint ” and that there is an “ urgency underlying about all of the 11 songs ”. [ 56 ] Robin Denselow of The Guardian called the album “ epic ”, saying “ what U2 have achieved is an exhilarating and varied blend of see baron and subtelty ”. The review praised U2 for maturing and expanding their melodious stove, yet “ retain [ ing ] their feel of baron ” and the “ brave passion and emotion ” of Bono ‘s vocals. [ 147 ] Q ‘s Paul Du Noyer said that the beginning of The Joshua Tree ‘s “ potential lies in a kind of apparitional frustration – a feel of hunger and tension which roams its every chase in search of some climactic consequence of publish, of fulfillment, that never arrives. ” He concluded his inspection by writing that the music “ has the one thing full of life to worthwhile rock, a matter then much absent : the urge to exist ”. [ 144 ] Spin hailed the record as U2 ‘s “ first wholly successful album because it ultimately breaks free from the seductive but limiting chant-and-drone approach of earlier material ”. The review stated, “ There is n’t a bad song on the commemorate ” and that “ every one has a overcharge ”. The magazine praised U2 for eschewing ambient experiment in favor of elementary but layered arrangements. [ 62 ] Robert Hilburn of the Los Angeles Times said the album “ confirms on record what this band has been slowly asserting for three years now on stage : U2 is what the Rolling Stones ceased being years ago—the greatest rock and cast band in the earth ”. Hilburn noted that the band showed “ sometimes breathless signs of growth ” and played more “ cut and promise ” music. [ 60 ] Hot Press editor and longtime U2 assistant Bill Graham said that “ The Joshua Tree rescues rock from its decay, bravely and unashamedly basing itself in the mainstream before very cleverly lifting off into respective higher dimensions, ” and that U2 “ must be taken very badly indeed after this reappraisal of rock ”. [ 148 ] John Rockwell of The New York Times was complimentary of the ring for expanding its musical rate but said Bono ‘s vocals were “ marred throughout by sobbing affectation ” and sounded excessively much like other singers, resulting in a “ curious passing of individuality ”. [ 149 ] The Houston Chronicle ‘s Marty Racine felt it has “ music that both soothes and inspires, music that is anthemic, music with dash ”. Racine, however, believed the group took itself excessively seriously, resulting in a record that is “ not a whole batch of fun, bordering on the ostentatious ”, which caused him to lose interest by the second side. [ 141 ] Robert Christgau from The Village Voice found the lyrics tasteful and the music “ doleful and passionate, stately and involved ”, but lamented what he felt was pompous tattle by Bono, calling it “ one of the worst cases of meaning always to afflict a deserve candidate for superstardom ”. [ 145 ] In a retrospective review, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic said “ their focus has never been clearer, nor has their music been catchier ”. His review concluded, “ never earlier have U2 ‘s big messages sounded so direct and personal. ” [ 138 ] Entertainment Weekly ‘s Bill Wyman wrote that the album combined “ easy-to-grasp themes — alienation and an foreigner ’ second ambivalent view of America — with an extremely focused musical attack ”. [ 140 ] A 2008 retrospective by Q said “ their reinvention of stadium rock sounds deoxyadenosine monophosphate impassioned as ever ” and that the album strikes “ a finely balanced desegregate of familiarity and might ”. [ 150 ] Anthony DeCurtis of Rolling Stone compared the album to Bruce Springsteen ‘s Born in the U.S.A., stating that both records “ lifted a democrat artist to mega-stardom ”, and that the musicians ‘ uplifting live shows and the “ diaphanous aural pleasure ” of the two records obscured their foreboding nature. DeCurtis summarized The Joshua Tree ‘s examination of America both lyrically and musically as such : [ 5 ]

“ The violent smasher, cultural affluence, religious void and ferocious violence of America are explored to compelling effect in about every aspect of The Joshua Tree —in the title and the screen artwork, the blues and country borrowings evident in the music … indeed, Bono says that ‘dismantling the mythology of America ‘ is an important separate of The Joshua Tree ‘s artistic objective. ”

In voting for Rolling Stone ‘s 1987 end-of-year readers ‘ polls, U2 won in the categories “ Best album ”, “ artist of the year ”, “ Best band ”, “ Best Single ( “ With or Without You ) ”, and “ Best male Singer ” ( Bono ). [ 151 ] The album placed fourth on the “ Best Albums ” number from The Village Voice ‘s 1987 Pazz & Jop critics ‘ poll, [ 152 ] and sixth on NME ‘s list. [ 153 ] In 1988, U2 received four Grammy Award nominations for the album and its songs, winning honours for Album of the Year ( to beat artists such as Michael Jackson, Prince, and Whitney Houston ) and Best Rock Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocal for The Joshua Tree. [ 107 ] [ 154 ] “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ” was nominated for Song of the year and Record of the class, but lost in both categories. U2 were the only act that year to be nominated in each of the “ big Three ” categories ( Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Album of the year ). [ 107 ]

The Joshua Tree Tour [edit ]

Following the album ‘s publish, U2 embarked on a global concert tour, the Joshua Tree Tour. Lasting from April to December 1987, it comprised 109 shows over three legs. [ 155 ] The first and third base legs visited the US, while the second leg toured Europe. [ 31 ] The Joshua Tree elevated the group to a modern level of popularity ; the enlistment sold-out arenas and stadiums around the world—the inaugural time they systematically performed at venues of that size. [ 31 ] Songs from the album became staples of the go ‘s dress lists, as the group regularly performed eight of the phonograph record ‘s eleven tracks, and the only birdcall not to be played was “ Red Hill Mining Town ”. [ 155 ] Like their previous tours, the Joshua Tree Tour was a minimalistic, austere production, [ 156 ] and U2 used this mercantile establishment for addressing political and social concerns. [ 157 ] One such issue was Arizona Governor Evan Mecham ‘s canceling the submit ‘s observation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. [ 31 ] Throughout the go, the group continued to explore american roots music : they collaborated with family artist Bob Dylan, blues musician B. B. King, and Harlem ‘s New Voices of Freedom gospel choir ; U2 besides visited Graceland and Sun Studio in Memphis, where they recorded new fabric. [ 31 ] These new songs and the isthmus ‘s experiences on tour were documented for the 1988 Rattle and Hum album and Phil Joanou -directed motion photograph. The tour grossed $ 40 million [ 133 ] and drew 3 million attendees, [ 31 ] but despite its commercial achiever and positive reviews, U2 were dissatisfied creatively, and Bono believed they were musically unprepared for their success. [ 158 ] [ 159 ] Mullen said, “ We were the biggest, but we were n’t the best ”, [ 158 ] and for Bono the go was “ one of the worst times of [ their ] melodious life ”. [ 31 ] On the road, the group dealt with death threats, along with injuries that Bono sustained from performing. The set hinted that the stresses of touring led them to enjoy the “ rock candy and roll life style ” they previously avoided. [ 31 ]

bequest [edit ]

“ During the two decades that have elapsed since then, every move the band has made has been, in some way, a chemical reaction to the bequest of The Joshua Tree. Rattle and Hum was an extension of the album, far exploring american music forms such as blues, gospel, and soul. then, inescapably, U2 got tired of surviving in their own shadow, and both Achtung Baby and Zooropa chipped away at expectations of the band. When they finally realized there was no escaping their iconic status sealed by The Joshua Tree, U2 mocked it on Pop. By then, though, fans had grown tire of the ring ‘s experiment, and U2 have spent their last two albums trying to recapture the radio-friendly sound of their 1987 musical composition. ”

— PopMatters, in 2007 [ 160 ]
The Joshua Tree is the band ‘s best-selling album, [ 161 ] and with 25 million copies sold worldwide, [ 162 ] it is among the best-selling albums of all clock time. It ranks as one of the best-selling albums in the US ; in 1995, the RIAA certified it 10× platinum for shipping 10 million units, and the album subsequently received the Diamond Award for reaching this degree. [ 109 ] similarly, the canadian Recording Industry Association certified the album diamond in Canada. [ 163 ] In the UK, The Joshua Tree ranks in the circus tent 40 of the best-selling records with 2.88 million copies sold, [ 164 ] [ 165 ] having been certify 9× platinum, with an extra gold certificate for the twentieth anniversary edition. [ 166 ] In the Pacific, it is certifiable 5× platinum and 14× platinum in Australia and New Zealand, respectively. [ 167 ] [ 168 ] The Joshua Tree has been acclaimed by writers and music critics as one of the greatest albums of all time ; according to Acclaimed Music, it is the fortieth most acclaim commemorate based on critics ‘ lists. [ 169 ] In 1997, The Guardian collated cosmopolitan data from a range of celebrated critics, artists, and radio receiver DJs, who placed the record at number 57 on the list of the “ 100 Best Albums always ”. [ 170 ] It was ranked twenty-fifth in Colin Larkin ‘s 2000 book All Time Top 1000 Albums. [ 171 ] In a poll of VH1 viewers the adopt year, The Joshua Tree was voted the greatest pop album of all time, based on responses from over 250,000 people. [ 172 ] Rolling Stone ranked the album at number 26 on their 2003 list of “ The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time “. [ 173 ] Subsequent updates to the list re-ranked the album ; the 2012 translation ranked it 27th, writing that the album “ turn [ ed ] religious quests and political struggles into uplifting stadium singalongs ”, [ 174 ] and the 2020 translation of the list ranked it 135th. [ 175 ] In 2006, Time named The Joshua Tree one of the magazine ‘s 100 best albums, [ 176 ] while Hot Press ranked it 11th on a similar list. [ 177 ] Q named it the best phonograph record of the 1980s, [ 178 ] while Entertainment Weekly included the album on its number of the 100 best records released between 1983 and 2008. [ 179 ] In 2010, the album appeared at number 62 on Spin ‘s list of the 125 most influential albums in the 25 years since the magazine launched. The publication said, “ The ring ‘s fifth album sprinkle out hits like crazy, and they were unusually searching hits, each with a point political edge. ” [ 180 ] The same year, Consequence of Sound ranked The Joshua Tree 34th on its list of “ The 100 Greatest Albums of All Time ”, calling it “ arguably the biggest album of the 1980s ” and “ proof that lightning can be captured in a bottle ”. [ 181 ] In 2012, Slant Magazine ranked it 24th on its number of the “ Best Albums of the 1980s ”, saying that The Joshua Tree ‘s opening trio of songs helped “ the band became lords and emperors of anthemic ’80s rock ” and that “ U2 no long belonged to Dublin, but the worldly concern. ” [ 182 ] In 2018, Pitchfork ranked the record 47th on its number of “ The 200 Best Albums of the 1980s ”, writing that the album ‘s “ brilliant latent hostility ” and continued resonance was the solution of Eno and Lanois “ steer [ ing ] U2 toward a moody impressionism where slide guitars and three chord progressions sound cavernous, even baleful ”. [ 183 ] The Buffalo News said the phonograph record “ made [ U2 ] the first mainstream band since the Beatles to capture the spirit of the age in a manner that was both democrat and artistically, politically and socially incisive ”, [ 184 ] while humanities scholar Henry Vyverberg considered it among the minority of attempts at “ serious art “ ( in the vein of art rock ) during a ten in rock when the genre largely “ remained musical junk-food ”. [ 185 ] From Josh Tyrangiel ‘s perspective, it was the first album in a “ loom period ” leading through 1993 ‘s Zooropa when “ U2 made stadium-size art rock ‘n’ roll with huge melodies that allowed Bono to throw his arms around the earth while bending its auricle about social justice. ” [ 186 ] The writer Stuart A. Kallen called it a “ classic alternative album ”, [ 187 ] while WYMS diarist Mitchell Kreitzman credited it with exposing “ alternative music to the masses ” [ 188 ] and Kevin J. H. Dettmar cited it as the most commercially and critically successful album “ so far to emerge from alternative or college rock ‘n’ roll ”. [ 189 ] In 2014, The Joshua Tree was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for becoming “ part of our musical, social, and cultural history ”. [ 190 ] That same year, the album was selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry by the US Library of Congress for being deemed “ culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant ”. [ 191 ] It is the alone irish work to be therefore honor. [ 192 ] The isthmus ‘s preference for addressing political and social issues, equally well as their sedate delineation in Corbijn ‘s black-and-white sleeve photograph, contributed to the group ‘s earnest and serious picture as “ stone-faced pilgrim [ second ] ”. This trope became a target for derision after the band ‘s critically maligned Rattle and Hum project in 1988. [ 31 ] Various critics called them “ po-faced ”, [ 193 ] “ pompous bores ”, [ 57 ] and “ humorless ”. [ 194 ] The group ‘s continue exploration of american music for the project was labelled “ ostentatious ” [ 195 ] and “ ill-conceived and bombastic ”. [ 196 ] After Bono told fans on the 1989 Lovetown Tour that U2 would “ dream it all up again ”, the band reinvented themselves in the 1990s. They incorporated option rock candy, electronic dance music, and industrial music into their sound, and adopted a more dry, flippant persona by which they embraced the “ rock ‘n’ roll star ” identity they struggled with in the 1980s. [ 197 ] Bono referred to their 1991 album Achtung Baby as “ the sound of four men chopping down the Joshua Tree ”. [ 57 ] Author Bill Flanagan summarised the shock of The Joshua Tree on the group ‘s career in his lining notes for the album ‘s twentieth anniversary release : “ The Joshua Tree made U2 into international rock stars and established both a criterion they would always have to live up to and an double they would everlastingly try to live down. ” [ 198 ]

twentieth anniversary remastered version [edit ]

On 20 November 2007, a twentieth anniversary version of The Joshua Tree was released. [ 199 ] The album was remastered from the original analogue recordings under the steering of the Edge, [ 200 ] [ 201 ] with the original vinyl album artwork restored. [ 160 ] The let go of was made available in four formats : a single compact disk ; a two-disc deluxe version with a bonus sound recording certificate of deposit of B-sides, rarities, and demonstration ; a three-disc box set with the bonus sound recording certificate of deposit and DVD, photograph prints, and hardbacked book ; and a double vinyl version. All editions included liner notes by author Bill Flanagan and previously unobserved photograph by Anton Corbijn. [ 200 ] Manager Paul McGuinness explained, “ There has been continuous demand from U2 fans to have The Joshua Tree by rights re-mastered. As always, the band had to make sure it was right, and now it is. ” [ 200 ] Some formats include expand liner notes from the band members, the production team, and Anton Corbijn. [ 202 ] In an otherwise favorable inspection of the remastered album, Andrew Mueller of Uncut said that “ any casual hearer who can perceive a meaningful deviation between this and the original has i ) ears like a bat and/or two ) needs to get out more ”. [ 57 ] The bonus audio cadmium contains 14 extra tracks, [ 203 ] including the B-sides “ Luminous Times ( Hold on to Love ) ”, “ Walk to the Water ”, “ spanish Eyes ”, “ Deep in the Heart ”, “ Silver and Gold ”, “ Sweetest thing ”, and “ Race Against Time ”. [ 200 ] Two versions of “ Silver and Gold ” are included—U2 ‘s version, and the master record from the Sun City album by Bono, Keith Richards, and others. [ 204 ] The edit single interpretation of “ Where the Streets Have No name ” appears on the bonus certificate of deposit. “ beautiful Ghost/Introduction to Songs of Experience ” contains lyrics from the introduction of William Blake ‘s Songs of Experience, [ 57 ] while “ Drunk Chicken/America ” contains an excerpt of Allen Ginsberg ‘s course session of his poem, “ America “. [ 205 ] “ Wave of Sorrow ( Birdland ) ”, “ desert of Our Love ”, “ Rise Up ”, and “ Drunk Chicken/America ” are all previously unreleased recordings from The Joshua Tree sessions. [ 206 ] The bonus DVD includes be concert footage, a documentary, and two music videos. The disk includes Live from Paris, an 85-minute concert from 4 July 1987 that was in the first place broadcast on british television in celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of Island Records. [ 202 ] [ 207 ] The objective, titled Outside It’s America, was a 1987 MTV production about The Joshua Tree Tour. The two music videos are an alternate version “ With or Without You ” and the previously unreleased video for “ Red Hill Mining Town ”. footage of U2 ‘s change self area isthmus, the Dalton Brothers, is included on the phonograph record as an Easter egg. [ 202 ]

thirtieth anniversary tour and reissue [edit ]

The Joshua Tree U2 performing in Rome, during a concert tour commemorating the thirtieth anniversary of For the thirtieth anniversary of The Joshua Tree, U2 staged a 2017 concert tour in North America, Europe, and Latin America, on which they played the album in its entirety at each show. [ 208 ] [ 209 ] It was the first time the group toured in promotion of an album from their rear catalogue, rather than a new passing. [ 210 ] As part of the go, U2 headlined the Bonnaroo Music Festival in Manchester, Tennessee, in June. [ 211 ] In rationalising the go, the Edge cited the 2016 US presidential election and other world events for what he judged to be renewed rapport of The Joshua Tree ‘s subject matter : [ 212 ] “ That phonograph record was written in the mid-Eighties, during the Reagan – Thatcher earned run average of british and U.S. politics. It was a period when there was a draw of unrest. Thatcher was in the throes of trying to put down the miners ‘ come to ; there was all kinds of shenanigans going on in Central America. It feels like we ‘re right second there in a way … It equitable felt like, ‘Wow, these songs have a new intend and a newly rapport today that they did n’t have three years ago, four years ago. ‘ ” [ 212 ] The 2017 enlistment grossed more than $ 316 million from over 2.7 million tickets sold, [ 213 ] making it the highest-grossing go of the year. [ 214 ] Additional tour dates were added for Oceania and Asia in 2019, which included the band ‘s first always performances in South Korea, Singapore, India, and the Philippines. [ 215 ] The 2019 shows grossed $ 73.8 million and sold 567,000 tickets, bringing the accumulative totals for the group ‘s Joshua Tree anniversary tours to $ 390.8 million grossed and 3.3 million tickets sold. [ 216 ] On 2 June 2017, the album was reissued in several formats in memorial of its thirtieth anniversary. [ 217 ] Standard editions of the album were released on four hundred, vinyl record, and via digital download. [ 218 ] Deluxe editions, available on compact disk and digitally, include a concert record of a 1987 express at Madison Square Garden from the Joshua Tree Tour. [ 219 ] In addition to the concert, the super deluxe editions, available on candle, vinyl criminal record, and digitally, include : B-sides and rarities ; and remixes of the album ‘s songs made in 2017 by Daniel Lanois, St Francis Hotel, Jacknife Lee, Steve Lillywhite, and Flood. [ 217 ] [ 218 ] [ 220 ] The physical copies of the extremely deluxe edition include eight leaf prints and an 84-page book of photography film by the Edge during the album breed ‘s 1986 photoshoot in the Mojave Desert. [ 219 ] The 2017 remix of “ Red Hill Mining Town ” was released as a single on vinyl picture disk for Record Store Day in April 2017. [ 221 ]

chase list [edit ]

All lyrics are written by Bono ; all music is composed by U2 .

20th anniversary remaster – Deluxe Edition/Box Set: bonus audio CD
No. Title Writer(s) Producer Length
1. “Luminous Times (Hold on to Love)” U2, Eno Daniel Lanois, Brian Eno, U2 4:35
2. “Walk to the Water” U2 Lanois, Eno, U2 4:49
3. “Spanish Eyes” U2 U2 3:16
4. “Deep in the Heart” U2 U2 4:31
5. “Silver and Gold” Bono U2 4:38
6. “Sweetest Thing” U2 U2 with Lanois, Eno 3:05
7. “Race Against Time” U2 U2 with Lanois, Eno 4:03
8. “Where the Streets Have No Name” ( one edit ) U2 Lanois, Eno 4:50
9. “Silver and Gold” ( Sun City ) Bono Little Steven, Arthur Baker 4:43
10. “Beautiful Ghost/Introduction to Songs of Experience” U2, William Blake U2 3:56
11. “Wave of Sorrow (Birdland)” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:06
12. “Desert of Our Love” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:59
13. “Rise Up” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:08
14. “Drunk Chicken/America” U2, Allen Ginsberg Lanois, Eno 1:31
total length : 57:10
  • Track 4, “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”, includes a snippet of “Exodus” by Bob Marley and the Wailers at the end of the song. The snippet is not included on the CD and vinyl track list but is listed on some streaming services.
30th anniversary reissue – Super Deluxe Edition: Remixes (CD disc 3)
No. Title Length
1. “One Tree Hill” ( St Francis Hotel Remix ) 4:17
2. “Bullet the Blue Sky” ( Jacknife Lee Remix ) 6:03
3. “Running to Stand Still” ( Daniel Lanois Remix ) 4:41
4. “Red Hill Mining Town” ( Steve Lillywhite 2017 Mix ) 4:53
5. “With or Without You” ( Daniel Lanois Remix ) 5:04
6. “Where the Streets Have No Name” ( Flood Remix ) 6:45
30th anniversary reissue – Super Deluxe Edition: B-sides & Outtakes (CD disc 4)
No. Title Writer(s) Producer Length
1. “Luminous Times (Hold on to Love)” U2, Eno Daniel Lanois, Brian Eno, U2 4:35
2. “Walk to the Water” U2 Lanois, Eno, U2 4:49
3. “Spanish Eyes” U2 U2 3:16
4. “Deep in the Heart” U2 U2 4:31
5. “Silver and Gold” Bono U2 4:38
6. “Sweetest Thing” U2 U2 with Lanois, Eno 3:05
7. “Race Against Time” U2 U2 with Lanois, Eno 4:03
8. “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” ( Lillywhite Alternative Mix ’87 ) U2 Steve Lillywhite 4:15
9. “One Tree Hill Reprise” ( Brian Eno 2017 Mix ) U2 Lanois, Eno 2:10
10. “Silver and Gold” ( Sun City ) Bono Little Steven, Arthur Baker 4:42
11. “Beautiful Ghost/Introduction to Songs of Experience” U2, William Blake U2 3:56
12. “Wave of Sorrow (Birdland)” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:06
13. “Desert of Our Love” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:59
14. “Rise Up” U2 Lanois, Eno 4:08
15. “Drunk Chicken/America” U2, Allen Ginsberg Lanois, Eno 1:31
total length : 58:45

Personnel [edit ]

U2 [ 51 ] [ nota bene 2 ]
Additional performers [ 51 ]

  • Brian Eno – keyboards, DX7 programming, backing vocals
  • Daniel Lanois – tambourine, Omnichord, additional rhythm guitar ( “ I still Have n’t Found What I ‘m Looking For ”, Running to Stand still ” ), backing vocals
  • The Armin Family – strings ( “ One Tree Hill ” )
  • The Arklow Silver Band – brass ( “ Red Hill Mining Town ” )
  • Paul Barrett – brass arrangement and conducting

Technical [ 51 ]

  • Daniel Lanois – production
  • Brian Eno – production
  • Flood – recording
  • Dave Meegan – additional engineering
  • Pat McCarthy – additional engineering
  • Steve Lillywhite – mixing ( “ Where the Streets Have No name ”, “ With or Without You ”, “ Bullet the Blue Sky ”, “ Red Hill Mining Town ” )
  • Mark Wallis – mix engineering
  • Mary Kettle – assistant mix engineering
  • Bob Doidge – string recording
  • Joe O’Herlihy – studio crew
  • Des Broadberry – studio crew
  • Tom Mullally – studio crew
  • Tim Buckley – studio crew
  • Marc Coleman – studio crew
  • Mary Gough – studio crew
  • Marion Smyth – studio crew
  • Kirsty MacColl – album track sequencing

Charts [edit ]

Certifications and sales [edit ]

*The twentieth anniversary edition received an extra amber certification in the UK .

See besides [edit ]

References [edit ]


  1. ^ STS Studios, Danesmoate House, and Melbeach are uncredited in the album ‘s lining notes as record locations. They are listed based on the isthmus members ‘ and producers ‘ accounts of the sessions .
  2. ^ The band members ‘ instruments are not credited on the album ‘s liner notes, aside from the Edge ‘s back vocals and Bono ‘s harmonica. Their chief instruments are listed based on their accounts of the album ‘s read and their de facto primary coil roles in the group .


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