“Started a landslide in my ego” is a line that pops into my head regularly, either when I hear certain trigger words (like landslide) or I hear the title of A Day Without Me. I enjoy thinking that line, and I enjoy this song. And yes I recognize that I get the quote wrong.
From Boy, so it is very early U2 and therefore simple musically and lyrically, but that isn’t a bad thing. This is one of the better songs on the album really, in terms of the music, because it shows each part of the band working both separately and together. There are parts within the song where one of them comes out in front, it is mostly Edge of course, but there are distinct parts for both Larry and Adam as well. But then they all seem to flow back in together and are working well. It is definitely a harbinger of things to come for the band, which we see as they create album after album, that they clearly grow as a band as they mature.
The lyrics are relatively simple, repetitive a little, and of course they had no idea how to end the song, so they end up with a whole bunch of bah bah bah at the end, which is a bit of a waste. I can’t tell them how they should have done it better, but perhaps nothing lyrically would have been a better choice. One of the things that is noticeable about the song is that the lyrics are much less than they appear to be when you listen. I suspect this is a trick of the song’s length, which at 3:13 is a little short but not too much, but whenever I look at the lyrics for A Day Without Me I ask myself “is that all?”, because they seem to be singing a lot more than is actually printed. I don’t know why this is.
It is interesting to see Bono said that this song is about suicide, because that’s not at all what I ever got out of it. Looking at the lyrics now I can see some kinds of allusions in that direction (“if I were sleeping what’s at stake”), but overall no, to me it’s just a general song with random thoughts. I kind of think of it as a little peppy and upbeat, rather than anything the opposite. I mean, yeah, the whole title could be a little suggestive that way too, but there’s plenty of ways to spend a day without me without having it involve suicide. It’s kind of like the “i can’t stand to be apart from you” sort of sappy love, so if I were to be thinking along any lines it would be that, that we’re so in love that I don’t want to spend a day away from you and you don’t want to spend a day away from me. More fool me, I guess.
So, first time I had to write two of these in one day, after being sick yesterday. I hope this one’s okay, might be a little light on the thoughts.
My rating for A Day Without Me: 4 / 10