- U2: Paul "Bono Vox" Hewson (vocals); Dave "The Edge" Evans (guitar, background vocals); Adam Clayton (bass); Larry Mullen, Jr. (drums).
- Recorded at Windmill Lane, Dublin, Ireland.
- "An Cat Dubh" and "Into The Heart" are listed as one song.
- U2: Bono (vocals); The Edge (guitar, background vocals); Adam Clayton (bass guitar); Larry Mullen, Jr. (drums).
- Audio Mixers: Paul S. Thomas; Martin Hannett.
- Audio Remasterers: The Edge ; Arnie Acosta.
- Audio Remixer: Robbie McGrath.
- Liner Note Author: Paul Morley.
- Recording information: CBS Studios, London, England (02/26/1980-09/22/1980); The Marquee, London, England (02/26/1980-09/22/1980); The National Stadium, Dublin, Ireland (02/26/1980-09/22/1980); Windmill Lane Recording Studio, Dublin, Ireland (02/26/1980-09/22/1980).
- Photographers: Colm Henry; Paul Slattery.
- From the outset, U2 went for the big message -- every song on their debut album Boy sounds huge, with oceans of processed guitars cascading around Bono's impassioned wail. It was an inspired combination of large, stadium-rock beats and post-punk textures. Without the Edge's echoed, ringing guitar, U2 would have sounded like a traditional hard rock band, since the rhythm section and Bono treat each song as an anthem. Of course, that's the charm of Boy: all of its emotions are on the surface, delivered with optimistic, youthful self-belief, yet the unusual, distinctive guitar textures give it an unexpected tension that makes it an exhilarating debut. The songs may occasionally show some weakness -- the driving "I Will Follow," the dark "An Cat Dubh," and the shimmering "The Ocean" stand out among the sonic textures -- yet the band's musical and lyrical vision keep Boy compelling until the finish. [Island's 2008 reissue included an untitled bonus track.] ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Rolling Stone (3/1/01, p.54) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...In a way that hadn't been done in popular music since the Who...BOY explored male adolescence...as a state of desperate searching....fashioning dense, dusky atmospheres in which unabashed yearning and insistent conviction collide and intertwine..."
Q (7/95, p.148) - 3 Stars - Good - "...a culmination of modern ideas amid a sea of confused contemporary directions..."
CMJ (1/5/04, p.8) - Ranked #10 in CMJ's "Top 20 Most-Played Albums of 1981"
Melody Maker (6/3/95, p.36) - "...they've made three great albums, of which BOY, their eulogy to the twilight of innocence is one. It's dated badly, but that doesn't matter...I hear gobstoppers and ghost stories, magic and mischief, the sunnier moments of my childhood..."
Q (Magazine) (p.151) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "BOY impresses with its adolescent energy, its gauche charm, and sounds like a band already too big for the record they've just made."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.121) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Heard today, there' still a palpable ardency to U2's debut, an unselfconscious clawing for excellence..."