Rolling Stone magazine is not known to have the most progressive of musical tastes, but the Internet still erupted into surprised laughter when the venerable publication rolled out its best albums of 2014 list and U2's controversial "Songs of Innocence" was sitting there at the top. (The number two spot, by the way, was secured by the less controversial but even older Bruce Springsteen.)
Surely the magazine wanted to get us talking, but they also had to expect the result would instead be mocking.
This was Rolling Stone's explanation:
"There was no bigger album of 2014 — in terms of surprise, generosity and controversy. "Songs of Innocence" is also the rebirth of the year. Bono, the Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen Jr. put their lives on the line: giving away 11 songs of guitar rapture and frank, emotional tales of how they became a band out of the rough streets and spiritual ferment of Seventies Dublin. This is personal history with details."
And this was Twitter's reaction:
U2 actually just appeared on the Rolling Stone AOTY list and RS didn't know how to delete it off of their list.— Melody Yoncé Lau (@melodylamb) December 1, 2014
Rolling Stone or TROLLING Stone? U2's "Songs of Innocence" in the #1 spot on their list of 2014's 50 best albums. Thoughts? - @RahRahRaina— INDIE88 (@Indie88Toronto) December 1, 2014
Everything about contemporary music summed up by Rolling Stone picking as 2014 #1 album the U2 album everyone deleted from their iPhone— Jack Womack (@jwomack) December 1, 2014
Hahahaha Rolling Stone named U2's spam garbage iPhone record the #1 album of the year?!— Odd Hack (@Odd_Hack) December 1, 2014
U2 fronted by Springsteen & Chris Martin at Times Square tonight. If they do a live album, it's a lock at #1 for @RollingStone's 2015 list.— Richard Trapunski (@trapunski) December 1, 2014
U2 could record Bono’s flatulence and Rolling Stone would call it one of the year’s best albums. http://t.co/GVpSl43ihK— David Roberts (@drgrist) December 1, 2014
I don't usually critique other people's lists, but Rolling Stone put that U2 troll of an album as the best of 2014? pic.twitter.com/GyQpqljLDs— Confusion (@PigsAndPlans) December 1, 2014
Breaking: Clickhole acquires Rolling Stone http://t.co/g5AFUxyDVf— Dieter Bohn (@backlon) December 1, 2014
Guys lay off, it's not Rolling Stone's fault that their new CMS came with the U2 album in the first slot in the template.— Evie Nagy (@EvieN) December 1, 2014
Rolling Stone named U2’s “You Do Not Want This Free Album” their album of the year. Of the year. The year. Album of the year. The whole year— THE Lance Arthur (@thelancearthur) December 1, 2014
If there was ever a sign of @RollingStone's irrelevance in music criticism, ranking U2's album as #1 in 2014 surely must be its death rattle— Derek Rambeau (@rambeau) December 1, 2014
Well Rolling Stone released its Famous 50-and-over Men Who Released Rock Albums in 2014 list. Congrats, Lenny, U2 and Bruce! You still exist— brent dicrescenzo (@bdicrescenzo) December 1, 2014
For more, just visit twitter yourself.
By the way, we're still rolling out our own year-end lists but here are our best indie, electronic, R&B and country albums of the year with more to come.
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