What's your favourite song? Like, of all time? I know I know, it's hard to pin down. You’re finding it hard to choose between Justin Timberlake’s Rock your body or Beyonce’s Halo, aren’t you?

Well, don't worry, I can solve your dilemma. The best song in the world is…

U2’s Gloria.

Oh stop it with your howls of derision. You know it’s true. It’s just that somewhere between about 1989 and 2015 U2 became ‘uncool’, and you feel all embarrassed to admit it. Well, it’s not Bono’s fault people keep giving him money to express his opinion in music documentaries. It’s not The Edge’s fault that having a name that starts with ‘the’ is no longer de rigueur—that’s down to us, baby. It’s not Adam’s fault we all worry a bit if he is OK. (I hope he’s OK). It’s not Larry’s fault that because he is the most reliable drummer in the whole world there is never any U2 drummer scandal to talk about. [1]

Grow a spine and try to speak up!

Listen to it, man. This song kicks all other songs out of the water, hooks itself up to a couple of great white sharks and then water skis down the line of a massive wave, up a giant water funnel and into the sun. It’s got guts! It’s got feeling! It is unashamedly earnest!

You, with all your snark and cynicism and liking things ‘ironically’—secretly you know it: you are shallow, unhappy, unfulfilled; forever and frantically chasing the next thing nobody’s ever heard of. You YEARN for a thrilling guitar riff, a thumping beat and some god-damn PASSION.

You also know that if you put Bono in a kind of vocal Thunderdome he would pulverise the rest. He wouldn’t even need a bouncy harness and a chainsaw to do it. He’d just stand in the middle of the arena and… feel. Two voices in, one voice out! (Bono’s [2]). Bono’s voice would blast all others away like the ghostie people who came out of the Ark of the Covenant, straight into the hereafter. Straight to God (or his downstairs colleague), because U2 is God’s band ( te domine/ Gloria...exultate) and He’s on their side.

Now I’m not saying you’ll be turned into a pillar of salt if you don’t admit U2’s Gloria is the best song ever, because if the Christian God does exist I would prefer to believe He really does allow free will and would even let you play Supertramp’s Greatest Hits on repeat without divine punishment [3], but as I cannot know the unknowable I’ll just put it out there that it’s a possibility. [4]

Oh Lord, if I had anything… listen to it…feel it…splash some paint on your best jeans and cut the arms of your tshirt… open that door and let U2 back into your heart.


  1. I mean, would it kill him to blow up his kit live on stage or throw a television out a hotel window once in while?
  2. Tina Turner would naturally remain the mistress of vocal Thunderdome, so we will never know who would win that battle.
  3. Actually I am lying, you should suffer for eternity for that. 
  4. Yes yes I know that if you just pretend to think Gloria is the best song of all time He will know because he is omniscient—that just means you’re going to have to try really hard. NB: I don’t think U2 is as religious as they were at the start of their career so it is possible Gloria has moved down a bit in God’s ‘Current Favourites’ playlist.