The Beautiful Day single is the first from U2's 2000 album All That You Can't Leave Behind. Beautiful Day was released as a two-part CD in Australia: one with a video and one with three live songs. Unlike most two-part singles, these are both essential if U2 is your favorite band. The enhanced CD contains the title track, two previously unreleased B-sides, and a live video. The B-sides are "Summer Rain" and "Always." "Summer Rain" sounds like a better-produced outtake from Salome: Achtung Baby Sessions, which would qualify it for inclusion on a U2 single, you'd suppose. It is musically simplistic and the lyric does not elevate. "Always," however, is an awesome song, among the best non-LP tracks the band has ever released. Much has been made of the "return to the basics" quality of All That You can't Leave Behind. But such analysis is a bit blind to the Eno and European influences in the album's music. "Always" applies the best Eno has to offer with a well-written song. It sounds very similar to "Your Blue Room" from Passengers. The live video is the song "Last Night on Earth," recorded live in Mexico City from the Hasta la Vista Baby show. Hardcore U2 fan? Prepare to leave behind your money while Interscope is promoting All That You Can't Leave Behind.
AllMusic Review by JT Griffith