Now Reading
Choice Music Prize announce Irish classic album winner Achtung Baby

Choice Music Prize announce Irish classic album winner Achtung Baby


The RTÉ Choice Music Prize has announced the winner of the Classic Irish Album for this year.

U2’s 1991 album Achtung Baby has been given the prize this year.

The album featuring songs ‘Even Better Than The Real Thing’, ‘Mysterious Ways’, ‘The Fly’, ‘Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses’, and ‘One’ was described by Bono at the time as an album hacking at the legacy they had built to that record, their seventh – calling it “the sound of four men chopping down The Joshua Tree.”

Achtung Baby was recorded over six months at Hansa Studio in Berlin and Windmill Lane in Dublin with Daniel Lanois, Brian Eno with Steve Lillywhite, engineered by Flood and released on 18th November 1991.

Following Sinead O’Connor…

Sinéad O’ Connor was the inaugural winner of the Classic Irish Album last year for her 1990 album I Do Not Have What I Haven’t Got, an award she accepted on the night several months before she passed away.

In her acceptance speech, O’Connor took the time to show her support for refugees and specifically the people of Ukraine who have fled their war-torn country for Ireland.

Bono meanwhile, has faced much criticism lately for not speaking up on the ongoing genocide in Gaza and the continued bombing and killing of thousands of children including in over 30,000 people killed by Israel, having previously expressed solidarity with Israel following the October 7th single-day attack.

U2’s The Sphere show in Las Vegas finishes up on March 2nd, meaning there is a chance for the band to accept the award, and one would think – a great opportunity for Bono, normally loquacious on political and affairs of conflict, to finally say something on Palestine.

David Kitt recently wrote an open letter to Bono about this very topic.

The panel’s statement on why said:

Judges for the album were Sinead Crowley (Coimisiún na Meán), Michael Kealy (RTÉ TV), Maeve Quigley (Irish Daily Mail) and Will Leahy (RTÉ Gold) with Paul Russell (2FM) as the chairperson.

“The panel is unanimous that you cannot deny the album’s authenticity and significant cultural impact as one classic song after another unfolds over 55 minutes. To this day, it still resonates as a collection of songs that capture the spirit of change at both a personal as well as a societal level, when the Berlin wall came tumbling down, and Ireland sensed a change in the air. The ground-breaking Zoo TV Tour in support of the album helped to re-invent the stadium show and now over 30 years later, Achtung Baby is at the heart of the globally acclaimed ‘U2:UV Achtung Baby Live At Sphere’, a string of ground-breaking performances which launched Sphere, the cutting-edge new venue in Las Vegas”.

The winning Irish Album of the Year 2023 will be announced at the RTÉ Choice Music Prize live event in Vicar St 7th March, and will be broadcast on RTÉ 2FM in a special four-hour extended show with Beta Da Silva from 7-11pm. A special TV show will be broadcast on Thursday 14th March at 22.30 on RTÉ2.

The nominees for the Irish album of the year.

Here’s the 10 songs nominated for the RTÉ Choice Music Prize Irish Song of the Year 2023

Choice Music Prize reveal Irish Breakthrough Artist & Irish Artist nominees

Choice Prize Conversations series takes place on March 7th also.

Hey, before you go...

Nialler9 has been covering new music, new artists and gigs for the last 18 years. If you like the article you just read, and want us to publish more just like it, please consider supporting us on Patreon.

What you get as thanks in return...

  • A weekly Spotify playlist only for patrons.
  • Access to our private Nialler9 Discord community
  • Ad-free and bonus podcast episodes.
  • Guestlist & discounts to Nialler9 & Lumo Club events.
  • Themed playlists only for subscribers.
  • Your support enables us to continue to publish articles like this one, make podcasts and provide recommendations and news to our readers.
Become a patron at Patreon!