I Fall Down

Perhaps it’s just the way that this song has to follow up “Gloria”, which is actually one of the better songs from October, but “I Fall Down” is very much lacking. Threaded through the whole song is a piano melody that’s reasonable enough, but elsewhere it’s hard to remember any of the verses, and this one seems to a be a song where Bono’s forced improvisation comes apart. A repetitious passage like When I’m falling down is when you’re falling down/When you fall down, I fall down/I fall down would have significance if played correctly, but instead it comes across like a lack of ideas, and Bono’s delivery sounds like bluster instead of passion. Given this, Bono could have played the surrealist card, but instead we’re given a vague narrative about an individual falling down (“falling down” being the early U2 equivalent to modern U2’s use of the word “heart”), a woman named Julie and a man named John, neither of whom do much (apart from fall down).

“I Fall Down” isn’t really preachy, annoying or otherwise bad, however; it’s merely very forgettable and formless, with little other than the piano standing out amongst the musical or lyrical elements. U2 were always going to struggle with making an album without any writing beforehand in about two months, but here in particular they show that struggle, as opposed to the likes of “Fire” or “Gloria” which seem much more effortless.

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~ by 4trak on May 19, 2008.

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