90040-2 Boy
Produced by Steve Lillywhite
Released on October 1980
UK CHART POSITION #52 . . . US CHART POSITION #63 . . .
PLATINUM RECORD
Find it at GEMM
90040-2 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

S ome bands were simply born for big things and Boy was U2 one of them. Their debut album kicks off with an anthem, “I Will Follow,” that could only be called prescient. While nothing else that follows matches it in energy and intensity, this is not the case of a lucky wonder killing time until they learn the ropes. The band fell into a fabulous producer, Steve Lillywhite, who staged their ideas as grand sonic statements. The sheer force of songs like “The Electric Co.” and “Another Time, Another Place” suggest mid-period U2 and not the scratchings of lost boys. All four members had already established strong identities: Bono’s impassioned and earnest vocals, The Edge’s deceptively fragile sculptures of sound, Adam Clayton’s persistent bass and Larry Mullen’s pounding drums. Compared to contemporaries Echo & The Bunnymen and The Cure, U2 had a clarity of vision and purpose that belied their tender years. Bono was no brooding art major, after all, but a young general who led by example. Granted, the hip-shaking dance moves and John Mellencamp haircut had to go. Yet they’re the small sins of youth, like Bono’s occasionally overreaching vocals, and easily overlooked in lieu of the big strides they take toward something important and grand. Along with Siouxsie and the Banshees (another Lillywhite alum), U2 turned the ho-hum guitar/bass/drums/vox lineup into an electrifying experience. The Cure, Echo, the Furs, all of them were bogged down in the beginning with murky visions of their own future. To hear Boy is to meet the men of War. However, I don’t echo the enthusiasm of Trouser Press, who called this an “unquestionable masterpiece.” The album only has the one great song, and I’m pretty sure a masterpiece should have more than one. Come iPod pickin’ time, I followed my heart and left the rest to youth. Boy is ultimately only a very good record, more remarkable for its confidence and consistency than as a collection of hits, with a few surprises that include “Out of Control,” “An Cat Dubh” (Gaelic for “The Black Cat,” thanks to www.u2faqs.com) and “Shadows And Tall Trees.”

TRACK LISTING

  1. I WILL FOLLOW    3:36
  2. TWILIGHT    4:22
  3. AN CAT DUBH    6:21
  4. INTO THE HEART    1:53
  5. OUT OF CONTROL    4:13
  6. STORIES FOR BOYS    3:02
  7. THE OCEAN    1:34
  8. A DAY WITHOUT ME    3:14
  9. ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER PLACE    4:34
  10. THE ELECTRIC CO.    4:48
  11. SHADOWS AND TALL TREES    4:36

    2CD reissue bonus disc
  12. I WILL FOLLOW (PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED MIX)
  13. 11 O'CLOCK TICK TOCK
  14. TOUCH
  15. SPEED OF LIFE
  16. SATURDAY NIGHT
  17. THINGS TO MAKE AND DO
  18. OUT OF CONTROL (SINGLE VERSION)
  19. BOY/GIRL
  20. STORIES FOR BOYS (SINGLE VERSION)
  21. ANOTHER DAY
  22. TWILIGHT (SINGLE VERSION)
  23. BOY/GIRL (LIVE)
  24. 11 O'CLOCK TICK TOCK (LIVE)
  25. CARTOON WORLD (LIVE)

    All songs written by Bono Hewson/Larry Mullen/Adam Clayton/"The Edge" Evans

CREDITS

BONO -- singer
ADAM CLAYTON -- bass player
THE EDGE -- guitar player
LARRY -- drummer
Paul Thomas -- engineer
Ian Finlay -- U2 photographs
Hugo McGuinness -- "BOY" photograph
Bruno-Christian Tilley -- design

return to U2 discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK/US October 20, 1980 Island LP/CS ILPS/ICT-9646 lyric sleeve
AUSL/NZ 1980 Festival LP L-37517  
CAN 1980 Island LP ISL-9646 lyric sleeve
GER 1980 Island LP 202.913-320  
JPN 1980 Island/Polystar LP 20S-77  
POR 1980 Island LP 10.202913.40 lyric sleeve
US 1983 Island LP/CS 90040-1/4 lyric sleeve
US   Island CD 90040-2  
JPN   Island LP 25S-77  
JPN   Island CD P33D-20020  
UK May 1986 Island CD CID-110  
BRA 1986 Island LP 610.7089  
ARG 1987 Island LP/CS TLP/TMS-70023  
VEN 1987 Island LP 7523  
JPN   Island CD P24D-10048  
US/ARG 1990 Island LP 842 296-1  
US/ARG/BRA/MEX 1990 Island CD 842 296-2  
MEX 1990 Island LP LPR-25027  
JPN 1993 Island CD PHCR-4701  
BRA 2002 Universal CD 842 296-2  
JPN 2002 Universal CD UICY-2355  
JPN 2004 Universal CD UICY-9707  
FRA 2007 Universal 3CD 548874-2 repackaged w. UNDER A BLOOD RED SKY
+ THE UNFORGETTABLE FIRE
NET 2007 Universal LP 5303038 180g vinyl
UK 2008 Mercury LP 1761671 digital remaster
UK 2008 Mercury CD 1764646 digital remaster
US 2008 Universal/Island LP B0010843-01 180g vinyl
JPN 2008 Universal CD UICY-1413 digital remaster
UK 2008 Mercury 2CD 1761670 digital remaster w. bonus disc
JPN 2008 Universal 2CD UICY-1418/9 digital remaster w. bonus disc

 

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