Sound — 9
This album might be better than Joshua Tree. I can see the "die hard" U2 fans coming with pitchforks to my door right now, singing "With or Without You" and "Vertigo." Give me a break! Apparently a lot of U2 fans are either scared of techno or just don't want U2 doing anything but playing generic pop songs so they hate this album. This album is very interesting and continued the band's short-lived explorations into techno-rock. Songs like Do You Feel Loved and Mofo are very interesting and show a completely different side of the band.
Lyrics — 9
The lyrics are very upbeat and fit the techno vibe on the first half of the album. Then things start to slow down and get darker. By the end, songs like If You Wear that Velvet Dress, Please, and Wake Up Dead Man create bleak images of the world meeting it's end and pained descriptions of lost love (sounds pretty chessy I know). But this is a welcome change for U2, by all means. After writing so many plain old love songs for so long, these dark and ominous techno-backed tunes are a welcome change. I'd take the obscurity Miami over Beautiful Day any day!
Overall Impression — 10
This, Zooropa, and Achtung Baby are by far their most interesting works, but not all their best. Joshua Tree IS better than this album and so is Rattle & Hum and Achtung Baby. But this is an album every U2 fan should listen to and get time to know. I know, I know GASP U2 actually having fun and playing some sweet techno, god forbid, but it works out just fine. I love the dark edginess that's prominent throughout the album like on Wake Up Dead Man, however there are some songs that aren't spectacular. If God Will Send His Angels is neat-sounding but drags on or Velvet Dress takes a lot of getting used to and is a definite filler track. Top songs to hear off this are Mofo, Last Night on Earth, Discotheque, and Miami.