One Step Closer (U2 song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"One Step Closer"
Song by U2
from the album How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb
Released22 November 2004
GenreSoft rock

"One Step Closer" is a song by Irish rock band U2, and is the ninth track on their 2004 studio album, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb.

The song has a slow tempo, with lead vocalist Bono's lyrics centered on traffic images.[1] The origins of "One Step Closer" date back to the recording sessions for their 2000 album All That You Can't Leave Behind.[2] It was revived for Atomic Bomb, with Lanois introducing a pedal steel guitar in addition to guitars from the Edge and Bono, and musical influences varying from country music to the Velvet Underground making themselves felt.[2] One recording of the song ran for more than 15 minutes, with Bono adding many verses that were subsequently dropped.[2] Producer Jacknife Lee also contributed to the final version of the recording.[3]

"One Step Closer" is billed in the album with thanks to Noel Gallagher of Oasis. The title of the song comes from a conversation Bono had with Gallagher about Bono's dying father, Bob Hewson. Bono asked, "Do you think he believes in God?" to which Gallagher replied, "Well, he's one step closer to knowing."[2] As with most U2 songs, however, multiple readings are available,[4] with the singer's feeling of being lost, but still drifting towards some kind of understanding, possible at any age. Verdicts varied based on the listener: Bono biographer Mick Wall felt the song was "clearly linked" to Bono's father, and made for "painful if beautiful listening,"[5] Chicago Tribune reviewer Greg Kot did not make the same Bono connection and felt that Lanois' "foggy atmospherics" masked a lack of ideas,[1] while Christianity Today saw it as a "sadly uncertain, yet hopeful" depiction of Bono's father having a crisis of faith.[6]

The song has never been performed in concert by U2. It was rehearsed before the Innocence + Experience Tour in 2015,[7] but was ultimately not performed at any show.



Additional performers


  • Chris Thomas – original production
  • Daniel Lanois – original production
  • Jacknife Lee – additional production, mixing
  • Carl Glanville – recording
  • Chris Heaney – recording assistance


  1. ^ Jump up to: a b Greg Kot, How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb album review, Chicago Tribune, November 21, 2004.
  2. ^ Jump up to: a b c d U2 (2006). McCormick, Neil (ed.). U2 by U2. London: HarperCollins. p. 325. ISBN 0-00-719668-7.
  3. ^ Interview with Bono and Edge for promotion of How to Dismantle ..., , undated.
  4. ^ Adrian Deevoy, Walk on Water Archived 2008-04-17 at the Wayback Machine, Blender magazine, November 2004.
  5. ^ Wall, Mick (2005). Bono: In the Name of Love. Thunder's Mouth Press. p. 307.
  6. ^ Russ Breimeier, How to Dismantle ... review, , undated.
  7. ^ Axver (29 April 2015). "More news from rehearsals in Vancouver, 27 April 2015". Retrieved 13 April 2021.

External links[]

Retrieved from ""