Monday, May 23, 2011

U2- Unknown Caller- explanation of Bible lyrics

Stimata audienta, am atatea lucruri sa va scriu si atat de putin timp sa o fac, v-as fi tradus cu mare drag semnificatia textului acestei melodii care e compusa din pasaje biblice, cum se intampla des la Bono si la U2, in caz ca intampinati probleme in descifrare sau traducere, nu ezitati sa ma contactati.

This is a beautiful worship song portraying an intimate experience with God.

The song is nonlinear. It is looking back at an event with narration spliced through the event. It's easier to understand by regrouping the lyrics. Everything Bono sings solo is the main character of the song narrating or recalling his state previous to the event. The Bono/Edge harmony is the character of God. God’s words are nonlinear also. The character is retelling them in a different order.

The soft opening, bird sounds, and Sunshine, Sunshine is the present time. The character wakes with new meaning seeing the Light (Light of Christ, John 8:12) in a new way.

Bono solo/recalling the character's situation.

I was lost (these three words give all the meaning. He was lost. Isaiah 53:6) between the midnight and the dawning
In a place of no consequence or company
3:33 when the numbers fell off the clock face (the call from God comes at 3:33 Jeremiah 33:3)
Speed dialing with no signal at all

I was right there at the top of the bottom (he was stuck in the middle of nowhere)
On the edge of the known universe where I wanted to be (he didn’t exactly realize he was lost or stuck, he thought he was where he wanted to be)
I had driven to the scene of the accident
And I sat there waiting for me (his life was out of control and he was about to crash)

Words of God:

(first grouped by the technical metaphor, then the rest)

Force quit (This Macintosh metaphor is a poetic masterpiece. Force quit in Mac language is the method to quit a program that is out of control and can’t be stopped the normal way. It needs a different kind of intervention. God is doing a force quit on this guy’s life.) and move to trash (Mac language for delete. God is deleting the man’s life. Isaiah 1:18)
Restart and re-boot yourself (John 3:3, 2 Cor 5:17)
Password, you enter here, right now
You know your name so punch it in

Go, shout it out, rise up
Escape yourself, and gravity
Hear me, cease to speak that I may speak, Shush now (You’ve been so busy doing your own things to hear me before. Stop and listen.)
You're free to go
Shout for joy if you get the chance (Psalm 40:3. This is a U2 theme. They have been shouting the joy of God and redemption throughout their time in the spotlight. Gloria, 40, October, WTSHNN Elevation tour version, Yahweh.)
Hear me, cease to speak that I may speak
Shush now
Don't move or say a thing (Psalm 46:10 Be still and know that I am God.)

The last part of the song is the best. My interpretation is that the message we hear in the lyrics of the song is “be quiet so I can teach you” and the generic message “leave your old life and start a new life in me”, but there is much more after the lyrics end. After God speaks the final words of “Hear me, cease to speak that I may speak, Shush now, don't move or say a thing”, the song goes right into non-lyrical music as if it is a continuation of the lyrics. I believe U2 is using music as a way to imply spiritual communication (Ephesians 5:19, see U2’s interpretation of the Holy Ghost in The First Time “She got soul, soul, soul, sweet soul. And she teach me how to sing”).

The music starts out with beautiful organ/cathedral style music and then moves into an amazing Edge guitar solo, as if the meaning and feeling God is speaking is too beautiful to put into words and instead is portrayed by music over the final minute and half of the song.

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