Breakthrough Hit: War as an album. "I Will Follow" was their first charting single, but it was a low-charting one, and War's single "New Year's Day" cemented them as stars.
Broken Base: The distribution of their 2014 Songs Of Innocence album came via an unannounced free automatic download to all users of Apple iTunes. This has seemed to divide opinions on social media between "Yay! A free U2 album, I never expected that! Very clever way of distributing it, too!" and "My privacy has been violated! Apple hacked into my computer to send me this U2 album I didn't want! What else can Apple do to me?" The line may be further divided along the lines of your opinion of the album and/or the band.
Creator Backlash: Larry has been vocal in his dislike for Original Soundtracks 1, having said "There's a thin line between interesting music and self-indulgence. We crossed it on the Passengers record.", and added in 2002, "It hasn't grown on me. However, 'Miss Sarajevo' is a classic." Bono seems to have a better opinion, since in response to the last statement, he joked that the only reason Larry dislikes the album is "because we didn't let him play the drums!".
Bizarrely given the acclaim it was greeted with, some of the band members seem to have soured on Zooropa since its release. (Adam seems to be the lone holdout, describing it as "a favorite record of mine".)
Bono: I thought of Zooropa at the time as a work of genius. I really thought our pop discipline was matching our experimentation and this was our Sgt. Pepper. I was a little wrong about that. The truth is our pop disciplines were letting us down. We didn't create hits. We didn't quite deliver the songs. And what would Sgt. Pepper be without the pop songs?
The Edge: The songs are not classics but they are more experimental and interesting than classic pop songs. This is something we don't necessarily care to do anymore. We don't go down the road with a piece of music just because it's unusual. That's not enough for us now. We want something that's potent and some of these songs are not particularly potent.
The band members are essentially unanimous that their worst mistake about Pop was to allow their manager to schedule the tour ahead of schedule, and have consistently expressed frustration that the resulting deadline and time-crunch that plagued the sessions meant some songs were not recorded satisfactorily. They later re-recorded or remixed songs from the album for the The Best of 1990-2000 compilation.
Creator Breakdown: "One", generally considered to be one of the best songs in history, was written when the band was on the verge of breakup.
Old Shame: During an interview with Jonathan Ross, he plays a video of the band on one of their amateur concerts. Bono's reaction is priceless.
The Other Darrin: Two consecutive concerts were scheduled for Sydney on 26-27 November 1993, but Adam Clayton missed the first one because of an alcoholic blackout, and had to be replaced by the tour's bass technician, Stuart Morgan. This was the first and only time a member of U2 missed one of their shows - Clayton recovered sufficiently to play at the next day's concert, which was filmed and released as Zoo TV: Live from Sydney.