The Ocean

One of the shortest proper songs U2 has ever made, “The Ocean” is essentially a brief character sketch of a fairly megalomaniac character – I felt the world could go far/If they listened/To what I said – and the references to the washing of feet also suggest a messianic image too. The reference of Dorian Gray also adds to the lyrical effect, further emphasising the protagonist’s egotism.

Musically, the track is naturally fairly simplistic and doesn’t develop too much, although the watery effects and slightly Hawaiian feel to the guitar work vaguely support the lyric. Essentially, the song is an interesting reflection on adolescent self-image, but it’s somewhat trumped by the tracks surrounding it on Boy.

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~ by 4trak on April 13, 2008.

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