U2's 'How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb' sweeps all before it.

THE NEWLY released album by megastars U2 is already being predicted to be one of the biggest selling CDs of the current decade. 'How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb' has been received rapturously in all territories. Q magazine enthused that the album "is the most U2-sounding U2 album since 'The Joshua Tree'. It has that album's epic scope, while also harking back to early career peaks 'The Unforgettable Fire' and 'War'. Anthems and big themes are very much back in, confirming the trajectory of 2000's 'All That You Can't Leave Behind'." The album's single "Vertigo" has already topped numerous charts. It was promoted on a unique TV commercial tie-up between the band and iPod/iTunes. Said the band's manager Paul McGuinness, "Apple is spending $20 million worldwide on the U2 commercials."

The production of the album was not without its difficulties. Steve Lillywhite produced the record with additional production by Chris Thomas, Jacknife Lee, Nellee Hooper, Flood, Daniel Lanois, Brian Eno and Carl Glanville. Last Christmas the band scrapped a year's work with the album's original producer Chris Thomas (Sex Pistols, Pulp) and started again with Lillywhite. The album's lyrical themes are varied but contain several spiritual references. Said lead singer Bono about the song "Yahweh", "I had the idea that no one can own Jerusalem, but everybody wants to put flags on it. The title's an ancient name that's not meant to be spoken. I got around it by singing it. I hope I don't offend anyone."

Another song attracting much attention is the plea for more financial aid for the Third World, "Crumbs From Your Table". Said Bono, "I went to speak to Christian fundamentalist groups in America to convince them to give money to fight Aids in Africa. It was like getting blood from a stone. I told them about a hospice in Uganda where so many people were dying they had to sleep three to a bed. Sister Anne, who I mention in the song, works at that hospice. Her office is a sewer." CR

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