When great bands write stupid songs: Get On Your Boots

Posted: June 28, 2014 by generationgbooks in Music


U2 have always been one of my favorite bands. Just because I join the ranks of the rational folks who now belittle Bono and his political bucking bronco that he can’t get off of, does not mean that I don’t still appreciate that he and his band have brought so many great songs and memories to the masses. They are a great band, although I can’t say that of anything that they have released in the past ten years. Ten years is a long time. This bit of music that I’m writing about? I believe that’s when reality sunk its fangs into me and I realized that the suck had set in. I am not alone in questioning whether Bono is so busy mingling with the free world that he quit concentrating on his craft. I think it’s obvious, and if you go back and examine timelines, it all began, in ridiculous earnest, around the time that How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb came out. U2 hasn’t delivered a solid album in over a decade. In a thousand years I never would have expected the following song to ever be written, much less recorded, AND released as the first single off of a new U2 album. What’s the problem, you say? Let’s take a look.

Future needs a big kiss
Winds blow with a twist
Never seen a move like this
Can you see it too

Maybe the first four lines were written after watching Step Up, the Channing Tatum/Jenna Dewan movie from 2006? If you’re watching the movie, then yes, you are seeing it too. The future didn’t need a big kiss, though, as Tatum and Dewan spent a good portion of that movie sucking face. Winds blowing with a twist? Maybe Bono witnessed a juice tornado in the Serengeti?

Night is falling everywhere
Rockets hit the funfair
Satan loves a bomb scare
But it won’t scare you

Night does indeed fall everywhere. Rockets hit the funfair? Where is this funfair that is being held at night? If it’s in a country in the Middle East and they’re holding a funfair at night, when rebels and terrorists usually strike more, then they’re kind of asking for it? Satan loves a bomb scare. But it won’t scare you. Well, if you’re a human being, a fucking bomb scare would scare the shit out of you. Maybe this is a Johnny Mnemonic type situation? Therefore, they aren’t scared? I was plenty scared by these lyrics. The chorus? Oh yeah, that chorus.

Hey…Sexy Boots
Get on your Boots

What the fuck? Sexy boots? There’s a chance that a bomb is going off somewhere and you’re worried about seeing some girl put on sexy boots? Why would you identify a girl’s attractiveness by her boots? I can see if she’s stripping in a club somewhere and wearing next to nothing but thigh high boots, but in a potential war zone? On the battlefield? In a war torn field? In God’s Country? Makes no damn sense. Unless Bono means a man, and then we have a whole different dynamic, but one that still makes no sense. It also makes no sense, if he’s trying to set the scene to that of a battle zone. Who cares about seeing some bitch in sexy boots if you might step on a landmine and be blown to bits at any time? Make love, not war is taking it a bit far. Then the obligatory “Yeah”… you need to assert what you just said? Not very sure of yourself, War Zone Lothario.

Free me from the dark dream
Candy bars, ice cream
All the kids are screaming but the ghosts aren’t real

Free me from a dark dream of candy bars and ice cream? No way, Jose. I would remain in that dream forever. Unless he means dark chocolate? I would never leave! Is this Bono’s way of saying he likes milk chocolate, not dark chocolate? What does dreaming of chocolate have to do with anything? All the kids are screaming but the ghosts aren’t real. Kids might be screaming for candy bars and ice cream, but that’s not something bad, usually. The ghosts? Maybe they’re having dreams of the ghosts in Pac-Man? That would scare anyone who grew up inside the 1980’s Pac-Man universe (hand raised). The ghosts of the dentist hovering nearby with a drill to stop them from eating all that sugar? The ghosts of Boo-Berry cereal? Cereal and war and boots. Makes perfect sense to..well, U2.

Here’s what you gotta be
Love & community
Laughter is eternity if the joy is real

If you stand together, united in your hatred of dark chocolate, you will laugh forever. If the rockets don’t get you first. Nice message there, Bono Vox.

You don’t know how beautiful
You don’t know how beautiful
You are…
You don’t know
You get it do you
You don’t know
How beautiful you are…

Singing to the boots, the woman, or the candy bars and ice cream? No clear answers. Just a lot of worshipful questions masquerading as declarations. You don’t know. But you are. You don’t know. You get it don’t you? You don’t know. This is madness! How can any girl understand that back talk?

If someones into blowing up
We’re into growing up

I would hope you want to live and not be blown up.

Women are the future
All the big revelations
I’ve gotta submarine
You’ve got gasoline
I don’t wanna talk about wars between nations
Not right now

Women are the future- of big revelations. Like the commonly known; we’re all insane. I’ve gotta submarine, you’ve got gasoline. Come-on line? Kinky talk of mortar shells; I’m turned on, aren’t you? EEK! He doesn’t want to talk about wars between nations, not right now. Because he’d rather be discussing how women are insane and then lobbing gratuitous grenades of a supposedly sensual nature at the person wearing the boots. Nothing says sexy times like talk of submarines, gasoline, and a bomb scare.

Sexy Boots
Get on your Boots
Foxy boots

Whoa! Whoa! Stop the presses, Vicki Vale! Sexy just turned into foxy. Foxy Cleopatra? Foxy Brown? Boots..not babes. Go figure that out.

You don’t know how beautiful
You don’t know how beautiful
You are…
Sexy Boots
I don’t wanna talk about wars

You keep saying it, yet you keep singing these words. And likening sensual delights to warfare.

Let me in the sound
Let me in the sound
Let me in the sound
My God I’m going down
I don’t wanna drown now
Let me in the sound

That’s a lot of pleas to be let into the Sound. The Sound of Music? Already cast. Sound & Vision, one of the highlight’s of David Bowie’s 1977 masterpiece, Low? I wish we could all travel back in time to be in there, but alas, not happening. The Sound And The Fury, the classic novel by William Faulkner? Well, the lack of imaginative narrative in that novel does echo the narrative of this song, so perhaps. In context with the lyrics following, I will vote for Long Island Sound. Not to mention, it separates Long Island from Connecticut. I could see him swimming to save the Connecticut Chippies, an elitist group of Gulfstream obsessed yuppies. Couldn’t you? And yes, Bono, if you swim for the Chippies, you are likely going to drown. Of course he doesn’t want to drown now, because how can he jet all over the globe, saving millions from suffering without milk chocolate? And foxy boots? He can’t, yet he begs to be let into Long Island Sound, which may lead to his drowning. What the fuck, Bono? What the fuck?

Let me in the sound
Let me in the sound
Let me in the sound
Get on your Boots
Get on your Boots

I guess the narrator of the piece wants to drown. While watching this girl get on her sexy, no, foxy boots. I hope he isn’t singing this while putting on his sexy, no, foxy boots, because that will definitely result in him drowning. In the sound. In the sound. In the sound. I have no fucking idea.

U2, as I stated, one of my favorite bands. Until the past ten years. No Line on The Horizon is absolute shit. I liked Magnificent for about five minutes, but that, too, did pass. I had Matt Foo make a copy for me, because I refused to pay for the album based on this monstrosity of a song. I love vinyl and music, and I love U2 unequivocally, before the last decade. This song? According to multiple Google sources, it was inspired by Bono taking his family to France and seeing warplanes overhead. Did you get any of that from the lyrics cited above? I certainly didn’t. I witnessed a bunch of nonsensical lyrics coming from a band that brought us earth-shattering songs like “With Or Without You”, “You’re So Cruel”, “All I Want Is You”, among others. Listen to the earlier U2 and then listen to the last ten years. It’s enough to make you want to cry. Or drown. In the sound.


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