Monday, October 10, 2022

"All I Want Is You" by U2

Song#:  3949
Date:  07/01/1989
Debut:  93
Peak:  83
Weeks:  4
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  In the long run, U2's hybrid studio/live album Rattle and Hum would sell only half the amount of their previous classic The Joshua Tree. However, that "half" equated to 5 million copies, which was still impressive. By this point in time the album was winding down after three singles with the third one, "When Love Comes to Town" (with B.B. King), only getting to #68 Pop. Still, the label went ahead and released this fourth single in hopes of recapturing the pop radio audience. It didn't quite work out. While the song would get to #13 Rock, it failed to do much of anything on the Pop chart and fell off after a short month. To-date it was their lowest peaking single on the Pop chart and would remain so until 2005. This song would wrap up the 80s for U2.

ReduxReview:  With the band exploring American music genres for the album's studio tracks, I always thought this was sort of their salute to the heartland rock style of Bruce Springsteen. I could totally hear Springsteen doing this song. It was reflective of his work. That probably wasn't U2's intent when writing the song, but that was how I heard it (and still do). Of course U2 did it in their own style with the repetitive guitar licks and the odd string arrangement (courtesy of Van Dyke Parks). It wasn't a bad choice for a single, but it wasn't going to get very far. I think it was just a hail Mary by the label to try and keep album sales going and it didn't work.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) While this song didn't do well the first time around, it got a second chance in 1994. The track was selected to be included in the rom-com film Reality Bites. It would also be on the associated soundtrack album. Due to its use in the film, the song received attention and it was enough for the label to issue it out as a single again. On its second go 'round the tune would make it to #50 on the Pop chart. Of course the big hit from the soundtrack was the #1 "Stay (I Missed You)" by Lisa Loeb, which helped the album get to #13 and go double platinum. Reality Bites was directed by Ben Stiller and starred himself plus Winona Ryder and Ethan Hawke. It was a modest box office hit that would later be a cult film thank in part to its association with the early 90s grunge music scene.  2) After the critical disappointment of Rattle and Hum, U2 thought it was time for a change. They would update their sound and approach for 1991's Achtung Baby. Influenced by alt/industrial rock along with electronic dance music, the LP was critically hailed and was a major success peaking at #1, going 7x platinum, and spawning a pair of Top 10s including the classic "One." It would be nominated for an Album of the Year Grammy and would win the band one for Best Rock Performance, Duo or Group. Their success would continue over the years with all but two of their regular studio albums hitting #1. More Grammys would follow including Record and Song of the Year for "Beautiful Day" and Album of the Year for "How to Dismantle and Atomic Bomb."


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