U2's 50 Greatest Songs

A definitive guide to 35 years of music that changed the world

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45. "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me"

Co-produced by British trip-hop artist Nellee Hooper, "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me" dates back to the Zooropa sessions – on the album's cover, it's referred to in distorted purple letters spelling "ISSMEKILLM." It emerged in 1995 as the lead single from the Batman Forever soundtrack – a rare move into blockbuster work for Bono and the Edge, who had previously done music for artier films by directors like Wim Wenders and Robert Altman. Though Bono originally balked at the idea, the Edge said, "I figured it'd be good for us to be involved in something that's basically throwaway and lighthearted." The gamble paid off, and it ended up a bigger hit than anything off Zooropa, thanks to a track that gave their Nineties dance flavors a woozily anthemic feel. Bono sings, "They'll want their money back/If you're alive at 33." On the PopMart tour, the band made stark reference to the dark side of fame by projecting Warhol-esque images of celebrities, many of whom had died young, including Jim Morrison, Ian Curtis, Kurt Cobain and Tupac Shakur.

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