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Critical Analysis of “Beautiful Day” by U2

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I have listened to ‘Beautiful Day’ by U2 a number of times and each time the message Bono, the writer and lead vocalist, is sending out becomes clearer and clearer. The message behind this song is the environment and how it has changed as a result of how people have treated it. He is trying to make people see that something needs to be done about the environment before it deteriorates. The first time I listened to ‘Beautiful Day’, I highlighted key words and phrases which I thought were significant to what the song is mainly about. I, also, thought about the influence this song has had on its audience and me, and how it could help me when I do verbal arts.

In ‘Beautiful Day’, it refers to a number of different issues and Bono gives his opinion on these issues. He highlights them by using powerful statements. For example:

“You’re on the road,

But you’ve got no destination,

You’re in the mud…”

To me, this shows that Bono is trying to say that we are all going about our normal lives but if we don’t do anything about the various problems then there will be no future for us. Also, another powerful statement is:

“See the canyons broken by cloud,

See the tuna fleets clearing the sea out…”

This stands out to me because Bono is giving examples of things which need to change and telling the audience to see and pay attention to them. When this part of the song is sung, the music goes quieter to emphasise Bono’s message. This is when Bono sings with even more passion and it shows that he cares a lot for the environment. The chorus of ‘Beautiful Day’ brings the song together brilliantly. It shows Bono’s opinion on the world and it ties in nicely.

The songs follows a common structure of :


Verse 1

Verse 2


Verse 3


Middle Section



I think the lyrics and the music combined with Bono’s voice make this song reach home. He sings the song with loads of passion and he sounds a bit upset. This tells the audience that he cares and believes in what he is singing. I think that is why the song is so effective.

I think that ‘Beautiful Day’ by U2 is an excellent example of Verbal Arts. It really hits home with its powerful lyrics and catchy tune. It makes an impact on everyone who listens to it and I think that is what Verbal Arts is all about.

Analysing this song has been a bit of a challenge but I mainly enjoyed it.

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