• 28 Dec 13:04
  • 3 lists

From post-punk triers to arguably the biggest band in the world the staggering rise of the Dublin-based U2 started in 1977. After several strident singles in their homeland, U2 released their first UK record with 1980's 11 O’Clock Tick Tock. Although the single did not reach the charts, they drew critical plaudits for their impassioned live shows. Their breakthrough came with New Year's Day, the anthemic lead single from their third album, War (1983) and drew glowing reviews for the band's mesmeric interplay and Bono's soaring vocals. Their passage into super stardom was presaged by their stunning performance at Live Aid, and confirmed by their 1987 masterpiece The Joshua Tree, which made number 1 in both the UK and the US album charts. In the early 90s, Brian Eno unlocked the band's hitherto hidden experimental side, and sense of humour, on the superb Achtung Baby. It was followed by less successful stabs at electronica and dance music on Zooropa and Pop, but they resumed their anthemic best in the 00s with All That You Can't Leave Behind and No Line On The Horizon.

Followers: Aslan, Coldplay, Kings Of Leon, The Killers, Midnight Oil

Influenced By: The Clash, Joy Division, David Bowie, Thin Lizzy, Roxy Music...


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