The album went on to top charts in over 20 countries and was the fastest-selling album in British music history. Several re-releases have followed. In the album was selected for preservation in the National Recording Registry. Photographer Anton Corbijn was requested to scout potential sites for photos that would capture the essence of the title. While spending time with the band touring around the Mojave Desert on a bus, photos were taken around Reno, Nevada and then to several different locations in California. At one point, Corbijn told the band about Joshua trees and suggested using one on the record sleeve. It was used for all photos that appear throughout the album including the front cover. Although the photographer was hoping to discover a solo tree, he had decided that shooting the band amongst a group of trees would still work out fine. That was until the single tree was spotted.
The Joshua Tree
The idea of using a Joshua Tree photo came from photographer Anton Corbijn, who suggested a trip through the Mojave Desert to take pictures. Bono liked the name so much it became the album title. Corbijn recounts that Bono consulted a Bible and was taken by how the tree got its name from Mormon settlers who thought its limbs reminded them of a Biblical story of Joshua lifting his hands in prayer. The band, joined by Corbijn and album art designer Steve Averill, took a roadtrip from Reno to Joshua Tree in December after finishing the album. But it remains on the ground and has been visited by many fans, according to accounts on the fan website atu2.
The Joshua Tree is the fifth studio album by Irish rock band U2. In contrast to the ambient experimentation of their release, The Unforgettable Fire , the band aimed for a harder-hitting sound within the limitation of conventional song structures on The Joshua Tree. The album is influenced by American and Irish roots music , and through sociopolitically conscious lyrics embellished with spiritual imagery, it contrasts the group's antipathy for the "real America" with their fascination with the "mythical America". Inspired by American experiences, literature, and politics, U2 chose America as a theme for the record. Recording began in January in Ireland, and to foster a relaxed, creative atmosphere, the group primarily recorded in two houses. Several events during the sessions helped shape the conscious tone of the album, including the band's participation in the Conspiracy of Hope benefit concerts for Amnesty International , the death of roadie Greg Carroll, and lead vocalist Bono 's travels to Central America. Recording was completed in November ; additional production continued into January Throughout the sessions, U2 sought a "cinematic" quality for the record, one that would evoke a sense of location, in particular, the open spaces of the United States. They represented this in the sleeve photography depicting them in American desert landscapes. The Joshua Tree received critical acclaim, topped the charts in over 20 countries, and became the fastest-selling album in British history.
In Mexico, a limited edition CD was released as part of the Serie Millennium re-issues with a different picture sleeve. It was U2's first album to reach No. The album also peaked at No. In Switzerland, the album reached No. The album and sleeve cover also placed No. Critics at Rolling Stone made it No. When the red light's on we often don't respond to it.