Lovely piece by Luke Lewis on the NME blogs in response to Spin naming U2 the makers of the most influential album of the quarter-decade:
But once I’d reset my face from a “beg pardon?” grimace, I realised that the Spin team were entirely correct. Rather than diminishing over time, U2’s influence has grown with each decade. Trouble is, that’s a cause for angst, not celebration.
With ‘Achtung Baby’, U2 set the default mode for the next two decades of guitar music - sonically expansive yet lyrically evasive, “emotive” yet essentially meaningless. Today, thanks to U2, all bands with vague designs on the mainstream sound broadly the same.