Disc One – CD
* 1. Beautiful Day
* 2. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
* 3. Pride (In The Name Of Love)
* 4. With Or Without You
* 5. Vertigo
* 6. New Year’s Day
* 7. Mysterious Ways
* 8. Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of
* 9. Where The Streets Have No Name
* 10. Sweetest Thing
* 11. Sunday Bloody Sunday
* 12. One
* 13. Desire
* 14. Walk On
* 15. Elevation
* 16. Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own
* 17. The Saints Are Coming
* 18. Window In The Skies
Disc Two – Live In Milan (DVD)
* 1. Vertigo
* 2. I Will Follow
* 3. Elevation
* 4. Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
* 5. All I Want Is You
* 6. City Of Blinding Lights
* 7. Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own
* 8. Miss Sarajevo
* 9. Original Of The Species
* 10. With Or Without You
Looking at the CD tracklist specifically, I think it is a pretty good list, containing what I think are the essential songs in the U2 catalog. While we are talking about the greatest of U2’s songs, I wanted to talk about what, in my opinion, are the essential songs of the U2 catalog, that is, songs that no complete U2 best of can be without. Not only that, but I think these are the songs that had a large role in making U2’s career what it is.
1. Sunday Bloody Sunday – One of their first major songs and what established them as a band with a political conscious
2. Pride – Simply one of their classic anthems
3. Bad – Probably the least well known song, I include it because this song at Live Aid was a defining moment for their career.
4. Where the streets have no name – Perhaps their most famous live song.
5. Either “I still have not found what I’m looking for” OR “With or Without You” – I know it is strange to have an ‘OR’ here, but either song captures the era of the Joshua Tree. Maybe both of them should be included.
6. One – While all of Achtung Baby is great, this is the song that helped the album, and therefore, the U2 of the 90s, really take off. It helped U2 remain relevant.
7. Beautiful Day – U2 had a couple of strange albums, Zooropa and Pop. Not to say these are not great albums, but U2 did leave planet Earth for a while, and many U2 fans and music lovers in general were waiting for a return to classic U2. This song is simply amazing because it’s right up there with their older songs in popularity. As “One” brought about 90s U2, this song provided a bright window into what U2 could and would bring in the 90s.
Some would say “Vertigo” is another of these songs, and while it is a great song, I cannot help but compare it to “Beautiful Day” in terms of impact to U2’s career. Perhaps if the latter was never released, “Vertigo” would be more significant. That is not to take away the quality of the song, however.