How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb

Common Sense Media says

U2 gets back on track.

Age(i)

2
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9
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17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Love and optimism rule, though not blindly.

Violence

On "Vertigo" there is a reference to bullets ripping up the sky. "Sometimes You can't Make it On Your Own," references a couple fighting, and the protagonist taking punches for his partner, but it's not the literal variety.

Sex

Nothing overt.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

U2 partnered with Apple.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

There's a song called "Miracle Drug," that has nothing to do with real drugs.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that unless Bono gets really angry about something, there's nothing much to worry about on a U2 record. The singer-lyricist still has much to say, but he does so in a way that turns the idea of protest music on its ear. Anger becomes hope, and he shows instead of telling people how to live. The lyrics on this CD deal with positive emotion, wrapped in music that's typically upbeat. Love and relationships are a repeating theme.

Parents say

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Kids say

What's the story?

U2 seems to be back from its 1990s diversion into whimsy and irony (let's ignore the big partnership with Apple on their iPods, which may or may not have already make a connection with your kids). While there are some straight guitar riffs that can relate more to today's garage-rock fans, the band manages to do it while getting back to the airy, moody echo of the Edge's best guitar work of the 1980s. While upbeat lyrically, HOW TO DISMANTLE AN ATOMIC BOMB has some stark points here and there -- especially on "Love and Peace or Else," an obvious anti-war, anti-imperialism song, with references to troops digging in. Bono the poet wants listeners to draw their own conclusions on songs like "Crumbs From Your Table," which could reference a bigger point or simply someone worn-out from a relationship. The listener has to think about it.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Parents who appreciate good music, and want to pass that idea to kids without pushing some old guys on them, could feel comfortable encouraging their kids to listen to this. While some of the '90s stuff wasn't as resonant, U2 is back to a healthy formula of fresh music that can both relate to modern audiences and introduce them to U2's brand sound. It's a very good CD that pushes positive messages. And somehow, 25 years into their career, U2 still comes off as cool.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about how Bono is able to view the world, such as it is, with hope. How does hope help you cope with problems?

Music details

Artist:U2
Release date:November 23, 2004
Label:Interscope Records
Genre:Rock
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

This review of How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb was written by

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Kid, 11 years old Written byWilliam Karambelas August 21, 2009
AGE
5
QUALITY
 

U2 get back on track

I think that this album by U2 really put them on the map from the nineties agreement with apple. I rated this album on for five and up because I think that anyone under five would not enjoy listening to it.

What other families should know
Great messages
Teen, 17 years old Written byitisme April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Like Moaning?

I haven't head the whole album but I don't think that I could stand listening to thses guys for most than a couple minutes. Bono is a supreme moaner and nothing more than that, and if you like that, go ahead and buy this album!

Teen, 14 years old Written bystar April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

U2 makes an amazing album.

The newest edition to the U2 collection is great! Some of the songs could possibly be classics such as Vertigo there main and biggest song in the album. I bought this album it was so good. Right after I heard a Vertigo for the first time on the radio I asked if it was U2 and sure enought it was so I boguht the album.

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