The Three Sunrises was a b side from The Unforgettable Fire single, and although I know the song and could sing at least some of the lyrics and hum at least some of the tune, I have to say that it is not quite unforgettable. In fact it’s mostly dull, mostly just seems like a half finished kind of piece, not fully formed I guess you would say. Feels like it could do with a bit more baking, perhaps a lot of work on the lyrics, and you might get a half decent song out of it. The half decent part is what bothers me though, it might be the explanation for why the song didn’t go very far, because it doesn’t sound like much of a hit, or even a worthwhile song to complete. If it’s in a stack of partially done songs, it’s going to float to the bottom of the stack as others jump above it.
Now if you’ve heard this song you’ll know it contains one of my chief complaints, that of repetition. I feel like I’m being a little repetitious in saying this. The whole “in this love song” part, what you would probably call the chorus, is repeated four times, but each of those is repeating “love song” four times, so you could say it’s repeated sixteen times in total. That’s a bit too much for me. But then it’s even compounded after that, because the verses in between repeat themselves too. “Love won’t find its own way home” and “sunshine on me” repeat throughout the song. This is what I’m talking about when I say it needs more work on the lyrics, because each of these parts appearing once or twice is okay, but four times is overkill.
I don’t know the point of the song. I don’t know what the three sunrises are. There are not enough words in the song to make it any clearer. I could call this a love song, and make something up about sunrises, but I don’t know. I could call it religious, and say that on the third day Jesus rose again, so maybe they’re referring to those three sunrises. Don’t know. And then I could point out that this came from The Unforgettable Fire, and survivors have talked about there being a second sun on the day the bombs were dropped. Again, might be a bit of a stretch. I just don’t think there are enough lyrics to determine the point of it.
The song’s other claim to fame is that it was on the Wide Awake In America CD, which I listened to a lot in the early days because a) it was one of a few U2 songs that I had live recordings of, and b) it had Bad on it, which for the longest time (and still to this day) was in my top few U2 songs of all time. So I heard The Three Sunrises quite a bit while listening to that CD. Doesn’t mean I remember much about it these days though.
My rating for The Three Sunrises: 3 / 10