U2 has been known for its emotional and sometimes political lyrics. Lead singer Bono has written some thought-provoking lines to songs such as “New Year’s Day,” “Running to Stand Still” and “Pride (In the Name of Love).”
But during 40 years of writing and recording, there are bound to be some duds — times when Bono got a little too creative or had writer’s block and wrote down the first thing that came into his head.
I had my own list of offenders, but I sought out the help of members of u2log.com and u2interference.com to help with the harder-to-find lyrics. And there were some doozies.
In no particular order, here are 15 of the worst U2 lyrics that make you roll your eyes, scratch your head or laugh out loud.
- “The sea, it swells like a sore head” (“Electrical Storm”) – The only thing worse would be to compare the sea to a festering boil.
- “In the days when we were swinging from the trees / I was a monkey stealing honey from a swarm of bees / I could taste you even then” (“Wild Honey”) – There are so many weird things going on here. I’m sure there’s some metaphor here — sex? God? — but at face value, it’s pretty silly.
- “With a mouth full of teeth you ate all your friends” (“Crumbs From Your Table”) – I would hope that you’d have a full set of teeth if you’re going to chew up humans.
- “Some days are slippy, other days sloppy / Some days you can’t stand the sight of a puppy” (“Some Days Are Better Than Others”) – This doesn’t even rhyme. And I’ve never had a day where I didn’t like to see a puppy.
- “Freedom has a scent / Like the top of a newborn baby’s head” (“Miracle Drug”) – When I think of freedom, I think of a baby’s head covered with embryonic fluid.
- “Well you left my heart empty as a vacant lot” (“Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses”) – Yes, a vacant lot is empty.
- “Bono, Bono, sexy person” (“Elevation”) – Bono has always had an ego, and while this is probably tongue in cheek, many can roll their eyes at his narcissism.
- “You know you’re chewing bubblegum / You know what that is but you still want some / You just can’t get enough of that lovey-dovey stuff” (“Discotheque”) – it’s only fitting that I include something from the nadir of U2’s creative output. Another obvious line – if you know you’re chewing bubblegum, you probably know what it is. And “lovey-dovey stuff”? It’s a far cry from “Sunday Bloody Sunday.”
- “In a dry and waterless place” (“The Unforgettable Fire”) – Yes, but is there any water?
- “An intellectual tortoise / Racing with your bullet train” (“All Because of You”) – Bono had to have something rhyme with “choice” and chose “tor – toice”. Yeah, he had nothing.
- “We’re one but we’re not the same” (“One”) – A terrible platitude if I’ve ever heard one. It sounds like an outtake from “We Are the World.”
- “Some days are dry, some days are leaky / Some days come clean, other days are sneaky” (“Some Days Are Better Than Others”) – I should have just copied the entire lyrics to this song.
- “The corner of your lips / As the orbit of your hips” (“Elevation”) – How many times have these two words been used in rhymes? Can you not come up with anything more original, Bono?
- “Between the horses of love and lust / We are trampled underfoot” (“So Cruel”) – Ouch.
- “Unos, dos, tres, catorce!” (“Vertigo”) – One, two three, fourteen?