Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Window in the Skies - Video

A very clever video for U2's "Window in the Skies" just came out a couple of days ago. It was directed by Gary Koepke (thanks to Calvin in Spain). It recalls the masterful Mark Romanek video for "Hurt" by Johnny Cash. It shares the same fancy editing chops - splicing together video, documentary film & concert footage. The visual & emotional effect is one of tweaked nostalgia mixed with discovery. Perhaps you've never thought of Frank Zappa & Joe Strummer as musical brethren. "Window in the Skies" poses many of these possibilities - Mary J. Blige & Elvis Presley, Beck & Frank Sinatra, Keith Moon & David Byrne. It gets your head thinking about what these artists have in common. But it also intrigues because it must have taken the director a lot of time & effort to sync the singing footage with the new song's lyrics.

U2, by the way, has its own official YouTube page.

The two Rick Rubin/U2 collaborations - "The Saints Are Coming" & "Window in the Skies" are nice appetizers for the next U2 record. Rick Rubin had never worked with U2 before. Apparently he was made aware of this through an interview with U2 in which they mention him as an artist with which they'd like to work. This coupled with the fact that Bono is learning how to play piano - maybe for the sole purpose of using the instrument as a songwriting tool - is a clue to possible new musical directions. That they recorded these songs at Abbey Road is trivial when you listen to them. They are bursting with the energy of much younger bands. Makes you wonder what keeps them so engaged.