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War

4.6 out of 5 stars 76 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (30 May 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Mercury Records Ltd (London)
  • ASIN: B000001F3C
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,449 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Amazon.co.uk

The final album of U2's early period, before the group broadened its sonic palette and lyrical vision, War is a brilliantly conflicted album, sounding martial and majestic while its very purpose is to tear down false idols propped up by politics. "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and "40" take the subject of Northern Ireland's troubles head-on, while it's the subtext of "New Year's Day", which is about a sundered love relationship symbolic of a greater division. "Torn in two, we can be one," Bono pleads, as Edge's guitar scratches and snarls behind him. Songs such as "Two Hearts Beat as One" and the delicate "Drowning Man" take a back seat here, but they help make War a compelling and well-rounded album. --Daniel Durchholz

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mark Barry HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 22 July 2008
Format: Audio CD
U2's third album was unleashed on an expectant world in 1983 and launched them as a genuine global phenomenon. This long overdue CD Remaster is released today, Monday 21 July 2008 in the UK and then 22 July 2008 in the USA and other territories. Also released today are "Boy", their 1980 debut and "October" their second album from 1981. The Edge has personally overseen the remastering of all of them utilizing the same team that brought us the amazing quality re-issue of "The Joshua Tree" last year.

DISCS:
Here in the UK, "War" (like the others) comes in no less than 4 physical variants. The single CD is a straightforward remaster with an extended and upgraded booklet (it's one of those new round corner jewel cases) and costs £10. The second is this issue - the 2CD Deluxe Version at £20 - the 2nd disc being the B-sides of singles and new previously unreleased mixes. The third variant is a Limited Edition containing the 2CD Deluxe Edition housed in a DVD sized card box with a T-Shirt of the album sleeve - it costs a frankly ludicrous £35 and is a waste of space and money in my book. Last is the humble 10-track LP - it's housed in a repro of the original gatefold sleeve and is pressed on 180 grams vinyl with upgraded liner notes - it costs £15 and is a limited edition. THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE 2CD DELUXE EDITION and the SINGLE DISC EDITION.

Here's the layout:
Disc 1 is the 10 track original album, issued March 1983 on Island ILPS 9733, remastered 2008 (42:11 minutes)

Disc 2 is the B-sides of 7" and 12" singles from Germany, the UK and the USA along with two brand new mixes of "New Year's Day" - all tracks remastered in 2008. It should also be noted that the CD lists 12 tracks, but the booklet lists only 11 - and in the wrong order!
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Format: Audio CD
I am a young U2 fanatic and one of the things I love the most is going back to the oldies! Everyone of them I have listened to and got addicted to. WAR was strangely the last of the 80s classics that I got into but for me it is the best! I was amazed that I had listened to U2 for so long but i had never listened to the 'smaller songs' on this album. 'Sunday Bloody, Sunday' and 'New Year's Day' are undoubted U2 classics but it is the other songs that capture this album. 'Seconds', 'Two hearts beat as one' and '40' are superb songs but the one that shocked me was 'Drowning Man'. It is beautiful and it is a mystery why this is not a U2 classic, I think it is up there with 'One' and 'With or Without You'. The best thing about U2 is finding these gems of songs that you would'nt usually listen to. WAR is full of these songs and you would be a fool not to try it out!
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By A Customer on 15 Sept. 2005
Format: Audio CD
Like many reviewers say, you really need to listen to U2 albums more than once, there is a huge difference between hearing and listening, and over the years the band has taught me to listen to the lyrics, not just for their songs but other artists as well. Growing up in a country where every day somebody was killed due to the "Troubles", the cover ups, the misunderstandings and angst between communities, there was not one person born or raised in Ireland that was not affected by it in some way during those 30 years. Sunday Bloody Sunday is a U2 classic and is a stark reminder for all as to what happened in the town of L'derry - 4 very young men stood up against the corruption on all sides and I'm glad to say they are still at it in HTDAAB, this island of ours is more peaceful, but there are many more countries in the World who are experiencing their own troubles now. With War the guys got stuck in and have remained there ever since, listen to HTDAAB straight after War - from a tender start they have become a passionate giant, long may they continue, long may their music continue - we need more of this honesty!
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Format: Audio CD
"War", meanwhile, is the third U2 album, which saw them at the cusp of fame. The album is sonically a progression which has barely dated, the song writing is sound but painfully earnest and boringly sincere, and the band are clearly creating their own identity, their own personality, and have their own rare voice in the world. There are four or five truly classic songs on the main album, including the played-to-death "Sunday Bloody Sunday" (which repeated exposure to has now made me sadly numb and immune), and in true U2 style, it sounds very much like no one else, yet also unique to that particular record. If the band had split at this point, they'd go down in the annals of history as a band that were almost huge. And probably reformed a few years ago as a pension plan.

Nonetheless, "War" is certainly a fine and assured album that is imperfect only in its naivety. It's almost as if Bono felt he could cure the worlds ills with a stunning melody and an effective lyrics. Oh, youth. Nonetheless. as an album "War" is a product of its time,a reflection of youthful ideals, and well worth getting if you are a fan of the band.

The bonus disc, again an assortment of single-only b-sides, live fragments, and extra stuff is a boring listen, for one reason and one reason alone. Of the 12 songs on there, four of them are remixes of "New Years Day" (presented in one half-hour chunk of boredom, including two rather dated 1999 remixes by Ferry Corsten), followed by a quarter-hour of dated 12" mixes of "Two Hearts Beat As One" which explore the endless possibilities of the echo box and syndrum to their very limits. It turns what could have been an interesting listening experience into a barren plain of boredom.
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