From U2 US
Our resident Kiss92 DJ/journo is pleased with new U2 album that popped up magically on iPhones
Have you checked out the music selection on your iPhone recently?
If you have, you might have noticed that the new U2 album, Songs Of Innocence, has mysteriously become part of your collection.
Last week, Apple distributed a free copy of the album to more than 500 million iTunes users around the world, making it arguably the biggest release in the history of the music business.
It's staggering to think that, in the blink of an eye, 7 per cent of the Earth's population could suddenly have Bono bellowing into their ears.
Apple apparently paid the band US$100 million (S$120 million) for the privilege of releasing Songs Of Innocence.
Unfortunately, for both Apple and U2, there's been a bit of a backlash, with many iPhone users complaining about having the venerable rockers pushed on them in such an invasive fashion.
I can see their point, but honestly I'm enjoying the record too much to care.
I'm actually shocked at how much I like it, as I've been actively despising the band for two decades.
For years, I've associated U2 with a very turbulent time in my life, specifically a very dysfunctional relationship with a girl.
Like U2, she was of Irish extraction.
We drove each other crazy for many years, and U2 was the soundtrack to our misery.
Once we attended a U2 concert in Vancouver, Canada, and ended up having a horrible fight.
Since then, fairly or not, I've always associated the band with the girl - their vices and virtues seemed somehow meshed with hers - the romanticism, the righteousness, the stridency, the earnestness, the storminess.
It was all just too much.
But that was a long time ago.
Listening to Songs Of Innocence, I'm suddenly hearing U2 with fresh ears, and I like it.
The band's tempestuousness has subsided as they've settled into middle-age.
I particularly like Raised By Wolves, which to me sounds as if it was inspired by Jacob Black, the werewolf from Twilight.
Volcano is also fun, with a sort of early-80s New Wave vibe. Cedarwood Road is at once majestic and a bit dirty.
The Troubles, a collaboration with Lykke Li, is a wonderfully slow-burning love-hate anthem.
I have no illusions that Songs Of Innocence isn't dad rock, but I'm a dad now so, whatever.
So thanks for the free music, Apple.
But just for future reference, I'm more of a Chvrches fan these days.