伸向远方的地平线

郑政恒
2009-10-05 看过
这半年来,我听得最多的唱片是爱尔兰摇滚乐队U2的《No Line on the Horizon》。首先吸引我的大概是唱片封面,一幅由当今艺坛炙手可热的杉本博司操刀的摄影作品,自然的海、自然的天伸向无限的地平线,充满宗教沉思的意味。U2的歌曲有时也把我带往个人的宗教沉思,然而总带有激情与热力。早年充满gospel味的经典作品〈I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For〉依然给我新鲜的感受。

《No Line on the Horizon》肯定不是U2最出色的唱片,但自从2000年《All That You Can't Leave Behind》一洗九十年代的颓风,重回货真价实的Rock路线,经过2004年《How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb》的强势摇滚推进,Bono的吶喊和The Edge实而不华的Guitar Riff回来了,我也愿意再投U2一票,重拾乐迷身份。

《No Line on the Horizon》中,U2、Brian Eno和Danny Lanois六人紧密合作的头四首作品最见功力,melody好之余,编曲方面又比较丰厚实在,转折之间也感到全曲的立体多元性,第三首〈Moment of Surrender〉是很好的例子,是唱片的点睛之作,动人之处媲美〈Sometimes You Can't Make It on Your Own〉:
At the moment of surrender
I folded to my knees
I did not notice the passers-by
And they did not notice me

〈Magnificent〉的宗教性及敬拜意味不言而喻,The Edge的powerchord和riff利落转换应记一功,简单而到位:
Only love, only love can leave such a mark
But only love, only love can heal such a scar……
Justified till we die, you and I will magnify
The Magnificent

第四首〈Unknown Caller〉充满前进朝气,积极一面少不了Bono的呼吁式高音吶喊,尾奏加入Organ更是神来之笔。至于与唱片同题的〈No Line on the Horizon〉一曲则以层次感取胜。

《No Line on the Horizon》中间三首作品都是大路Rock song,欠缺惊喜,但歌词不俗。〈Stand Up Comedy〉直言「God is love/And love is evolution's very best day」,〈I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight〉的变革愿望,遥遥呼应美国总统奥巴马:
Every generation gets a chance to change the world
Pity the nation that won't listen to your boys and girls
Cos the sweetest melody is the one we haven't heard
Is it true that perfect love drives out all fear?

《No Line on the Horizon》最后四首作品走向叙事性,不完全song-base格局,终曲〈Cedars of Lebanon〉的电影感觉甚至教我想起《The Million Dollar Hotel》的soundtrack。特别留意一下〈White as snow〉,恍若一首简洁的民歌,用了传统圣诗Veni, veni Emmanuel的旋律,实而不华地道出一位在爆炸袭击中受伤垂死士兵的心声:
Once I knew there was a love divine
Then came a time I thought it knew me not
Who can forgive forgiveness where forgiveness is not
Only the lamb as white as snow

《No Line on the Horizon》的优点大概就是U2本色态度及风格的坚持,值得一再反复细听。U2并不匆匆进入说理信息,而是用别人能够理解的符号表明风格与态度,站稳脚步,这大概不是一条简单直线,而是迂回的曲线或者伸向远方的地平线,与人生,与社会,与艺术有深层的踫撞。
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