U2, Echoing Beyonce, Share ‘Films of Innocence’ Visual Album

Marc Hogan

By Marc Hogan

Lead News Writer
on 12.08.14 in News

Graffiti might be an unlikely source of inspiration for a band that forced its art onto other people’s personal items, if that band’s name weren’t U2. As of today the Bono-led group is streaming Films of Innocence, a set of short films based on their new album Songs of Innocence — yes, the one that showed up automatically on iTunes users’ phones. The streams end tomorrow (December 9), when the full set will become available for purchase on iTunes and Amazon.

Though others, such as “Weird Al” Yankovic with 2011′s Alpocalypse, have previously released a music video for every song on an album, the name indelibly associated with such a move now is Beyoncé, whose late-2013 self-titled LP arrived, without prior notice, as a complete “visual album.” U2′s Films of Innocence brings together what’s billed as “11 of the world’s most acclaimed urban artists,” and the graffiti here is actually a serious matter — the videos are “taking the political murals of Northern Ireland as a reference point” — but might not 2014 have become the year where Bono’s self-seriousness finally drowned out his stadium-rock bombast?

Tickets for the “U2 Innocence + Experience Tour 2015” go on sale today.

The Guardian has helpfully compiled a list of where to find the videos, which you can see below in the order of the songs on the album.

Read Eric Harvey’s essay, U2 and Apple: Partners in Smarm.

1. “The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)” (via Stereogum)

2. “Every Breaking Wave” (watch over at Complex; the video isn’t working at the moment)

3. “California (There Is No End to Love)” (via Nerdist)

4. “Song for Someone” (watch over at NPR)

5. “Iris (Hold Me Close)” (via Dezeen)

6. “Volcano” (via Pitchfork)

7. “Raised by Wolves” (watch over at Nowness)

8. “Cedarwood Road” (watch over at Dazed)

9. “Sleep Like a Baby Tonight” (via Rolling Stone)

10. “This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now” (via Paper)

11. “The Troubles” (via Juxtapoz)