Wasn’t that dirty a day, unless you count that darn earth blocking light from the sun, causing the moon to look kind of muddy and the whole world to point their phones at it (yeah, me too, all I get is a little blob of light).
I like Dirty Day. It starts quiet and slow, builds up a little over time, gets somewhat faster and louder and so on. Then it sort of takes off a bit, but then slows down again. Kind of odd-paced, you might say. There’s an ongoing whine in the background that is a bit irritating at times, but it’s possible to tune it out if you concentrate on not hearing it. It does switch sounds here and there, then goes back to the original, so it does actually have a point, and isn’t just feedback during the recording.
The lyrics are a little meandering, I don’t know if I can describe them very well. I’m not sure if I can even describe the point of the song. Supposedly inspired by lines from Bono’s father, who I guess might have been proud that he wrote some lyrics for a song? Not necessarily, at least given the little we know about him.
This is one of the U2 songs that most remind me of a movie, whether it is the theme of one or the subject matter or whatever. I mean that it is quite cinematic, and I think of Wim Wenders and his films and think that this might just be the kind of thing he would listen to and write a movie to.
Favorite line, the one that sticks out and pops back to me every so often, is “if you need someone to blame, throw a rock in the air and you’ll hit someone guilty.” I’m sure I’ve heard variations of this many times, but this is the one I know.
And they finish with a whole bunch of repetition, “those days days days run away like horses over the hill,” which is one of my pet peeves. It’s lyrics like that which make you think they ran out of ideas, and just repeated that last line to end the song.
There’s a different version out there, the Junk Day Mix, from the days when they were trying to become a club band. It’s not bad, it’s not good, it’s a little different to the original but I don’t see the point in it really. There’s a place where Bono does a screeching “wake up” but it does little more than wake you up, then it drips back into the standard. It does also have a wailing sound in the background which doesn’t add anything, it’s worse than the whining sound from the original song.
Saw pictures of Bono in a bar in Berlin today, after his short weekend trip to New York to talk to the United Nations. I’m still a little confused as to why he was there, something to do with activism, related to poverty and so on, you know, the usual issues he is interested in. I would call that his side job, I guess. Just as long as he keeps the day job (or the evening job, you might say).
My rating for Dirty Day: 6 / 10