Walk To The Water

Walk To The Water was considered for release on The Joshua Tree, but ultimately ended up as a B side to the With Or Without You single. I just don’t know much about this song. It was a surprise to me to read that Bono thinks of it as part of a trilogy, along with With Or Without You and Luminous Times. Is it so? Maybe. They do seem to have similar styles and possibly could be made into an appropriate order, depending on your interpretation.

It has odd sounding music at the start, and throughout. Does it seem at times like they took some of that calming music that you can hear, like whale music, and recorded over that? (Sorry Edge and co). So, a little hippy dippy if you like. Odd lyrics too. Hard to tell whether the point is that you love someone or you lost someone. Is she turning away from him and walking away? Has he just seen her and formed a crush? Maybe if you do put it in line with With Or Without You then it gets a little more sense to it. I’ve seen various interpretations of the song and honestly I don’t agree with most of them, they just don’t seem right. I don’t know why.

One part of the song I do like is the line “A man with a suitcase full of things he doesn’t need”, because it reminds me of “The only baggage you can bring is all that you can’t leave behind” from Walk On. Can I imagine Bono thinking of the original line when he was writing the new song? I can, but I can also imagine the new line coming to him out of nowhere, or out of his subconscious. Either way, it’s an interesting echo across the decades, the kind of thing I do like to discover in the music.

Could it have been a song on the album? Maybe so, although it doesn’t sound quite complete. Maybe unproduced? Not sure what the term should be. Unfinished maybe, although since I’m listening to the version on the 20 year anniversary edition, it was supposedly improved for that. And it fades into nothing at the end, I don’t much like the kinds of songs where the music just fades away, I prefer a more definite finish to a song. Like Larry doing a crash at the end to put an end on it.

So, I can’t rate this song very high standing by itself. What I have to do is listen to the three songs all together, perhaps in different orders, and see if I can get some semblance of something out of them. Maybe by the time I review Luminous Times it’ll make a bit more sense. Although as I write that, something comes to me: “Let me love you” (from Walk To The Water), “With or without you”, and “Hold on to love” (the subheading of Luminous Times). That could certainly form a coherent thought. Unlike this review, which seems to be following the song’s pattern.

My rating for Walk To The Water: 2 / 10