INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
The Austin Chronicle APRIL 28, 2000 - by Christopher Gray
THE MILLION DOLLAR HOTEL
Bono goes Hollywood? Well, sort of. The 2000 Nobel Peace Prize candidate co-wrote the script for this, German auteur Wim Wenders' latest flick; the title refers to the seedy downtown L.A. joint where U2 filmed the Where The Streets Have No Name video. The irrepressible Irishman also has a cameo in the film, co-executive produced the soundtrack with Wenders, and spearheaded the album's ad-hoc band. He also convinced his bandmates to chip in a pair of new songs (plus Zooropa's pensive The First Time), never mind that U2's tenth album is due in August. Neither The Ground Beneath Her Feet (with lyrics by Bono bud Salman Rushdie) nor Stateless show any signs of slippage; Edge's solo on Ground may be his most elegant work since Love Is Blindness, and Stateless is four minutes of measured, yearning grace. The cuts from the Million Dollar Hotel band, which includes longtime U2 collaborators Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois, jazz-guitar ace Bill Frisell, and trumpeter Jon Hassell, are similarly airy and serene, with Lanois' swooning pedal steel and Hassell's muted, almost French horn-sounding trumpet particularly evocative throughout. The album's lone rocker is a real hummer, too - caped cruzado Tito Larriva surfaces for a killer Español version of The Sex Pistols' Anarchy In The UK, backed by the U2 rhythm section and guitarist Chris Spedding. The only sour note is MDH star Milla Jovovich's excruciating rendition of Lou Reed's Satellite Of Love. Maybe Bono can use his newfound clout with the United Nations to sponsor an international accord ensuring supermodels stick to acting and looking pouty.