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Around the interview grounds

After a brief lull, members of U2 have been interviewed on more radio stations across the planet. The most high profile interview was with Dave Fanning on Sunday on Ireland's RTE 2fm. This is a more in-depth interview than any yet conducted after Songs of Innocence dropped, and Dave gets beyond some of the cliches and repetitive questions of standard interviews. However, there is no tour news to report. Perhaps most interesting is Bono's statement at the 24 minute mark that "Invisible" will be "on [Songs of Innocence's] physical package in some which way".

Some tour news emerged when Edge was interviewed by Radio FFN in Hannover, Germany. FFN have conveniently presented the interview broken into separate audio files for each question. In response to a question about tour plans (the second-last one), Edge was not as explicit as Bono was to a different German station last week. He emphasised that "we are talking about [touring] and have no announcement to make but we are definitely making some serious plans", adding that "I would not be surprised if I have to buy some new luggage in the early part of next year". Also note his response to the third question, that U2 "actually had an album that we could've released almost a year ago ... [but in taking more time] we've come up with an album I'm really proud of now". What about Songs of Experience? The answers to the second and fourth questions are enlightening: he explains they still need to write a couple of songs and there is a long way to go, but they have a lot of material and hopefully its release won't take as long as Songs of Innocence. The two albums are companion pieces, "part of an overall creative project".

Bono gave a few more interviews, and the one with the most interesting answer tour-wise was his Absolute Radio interview with Christian O'Connell. At the 10:10 mark, he said that when U2 tour next year they will "try and play at the O2 [Arena, London] and places like that, more indoors than outdoors this time, but we'll see where it takes us". Is Bono looking forward to playing Songs of Innocence material live? "These songs are songs that I think will play themselves." At 6:50 he explains that he doesn't know yet which songs will become singles.

The smaller venues theme also emerged in an interview with Brazil's Rádio Cidade 102.9 (another one handily broken into question-by-question segments). Bono gave away little regarding a South American tour, but emphasised that "we've just got to get those venues right ... get some good venues to play; I'd love to play some small venues if we could as well. If it wasn't too elitist I would like that." Later in this interview, Bono again alludes to "Invisible" appearing on the physical edition of Songs of Innocence.

In an interview on Portland, Oregon's KINK FM, Bono spoke (at the 43 minute mark) of the band's ambitions when performing live. "We try to spend a lot of the ticket price on the show ... if we keep looking after our audience, they will keep looking after us." This is part of a broader discussion in which Bono looks back on ZooTV and Popmart (the Eugene show referenced by one of the interviewers is this one on Popmart). Finally, in an interview on San Francisco's KFOG 104.5, Bono didn't give away any new tour information, but at the start you can hear him sing the title line of The Left Banke's "Walk Away Renée" - and then jokingly claim it as his own song!

If you want a full list of interviews with links to audio, U2Wanderer is maintaining a handy list. We will continue to report on tour news in interviews, but we will generally not cover interviews that lack tour-related content.

 Posted by Axver on Tuesday, September 23, 2014 @ 03:05:40 UTC | permalink | Comments

Axver's Tour Predictions: War and The Unforgettable Fire

We've had a lot of interviews to report the last couple of days, but today has been quiet, so it is time for more tour predictions. I began with predictions for Songs of Innocence and then went all the way back to Boy and October. Today I move onto U2's breakthrough album War and my personal favourite The Unforgettable Fire.


 Posted by Axver on Saturday, September 20, 2014 @ 13:40:06 UTC | permalink | Comments

Bono and Edge interviews - U2 to play Germany in May 2015?

The interviews have been happening thick and fast. Two of the highest profile were with KROQ and with Jo Whiley, which we reported earlier, and Adam Clayton gave a very interesting interview on Argentinian radio. This article covers one with Edge and two more interviews with Bono.

The biggest news comes from Bono's interview with German radio station SWR3, which you can stream here. At the 7:10 mark, the interviewers asked Bono when U2 would return to Germany. He finally gets around to answering at 8:03: "we'll be back with you next May". After Adam was vague on Argentinian radio, this is remarkably specific. So by the sounds of that, U2 will be touring Europe in May 2015. Bono was also asked about Songs of Experience; he emphasised that "I am the least reliable member of U2" but "about sixty percent [of Experience] is there".

Bono also spoke to Marty Lennartz of Chicago's 93XRT; you can listen here. This interview had no real tour tidbits. Bono did, however, emphasise that U2 are ready to tour: "we've got the tunes and we can play 'em. We can play 'em in a stadium, we can play 'em in a pub, we can play them in a bus station - we've got the tunes." He also dropped some information about the bonus tracks on the deluxe version of Songs of Innocence. "Lucifer's Hands" and "The Crystal Ballroom" are, in Bono's words, a couple of "important songs". He then went on to describe three of the acoustic versions: "Every Breaking Waves" will "really kill ya"; "California" has a "big brass, big soul section like a Van Morrison song"; and there is a version of "Raised By Wolves" that "sounds like African music, Fela Kuti or something".

Meanwhile, The Edge spoke with The Edge. No, he hasn't been admitted to an asylum; he was interviewed by Alan Cross for Toronto station 102.1 The Edge and you can listen here. At the 10:41 mark, Cross asked when U2 would next be on the road. Edge was not as specific as Bono was to the Germans. "We don't have dates that we can announce today" but "next year for sure you will hear about U2 shows" including in Toronto. This led into a discussion with Cross about how U2 would follow a tour as massive as the 360 Tour. Edge expressed distaste for the idea of needing to "top" what had previously been done. Rather, he felt that "when it comes to music, it's really about what's right for that moment". What U2 did on 360 is "no longer fresh, no longer a new thing", and when they go on the road next year the presentation needs to be "something fresh and different and inspiring to us and hopefully to the people that come along and see the show". What could that be? "We're not sure exactly, but we want to do something different."

There was also some additional information about Songs of Experience slightly earlier in the interview, in response to a question at 10:13. Like Bono, Edge did not want to build unreasonable expectations. He emphasised that "it's too early to say for sure" but the band's intention is to get Experience out "in fairly short order".

 Posted by Axver on Friday, September 19, 2014 @ 15:55:47 UTC | permalink | Comments

Adam Clayton to South America: ''We miss you!''

A few hours ago, we reported news from a couple of interviews with Bono. The interviews have been coming thick and fast, and in our earlier article we missed a particularly interesting interview Adam Clayton gave to Argentina's Radio Metro 95.1 on the "Perros de la Calle" show. It was a wide-ranging interview, encompassing everything from Scotland's independence referendum to U2's appearance on The Simpsons. You can listen to it on YouTube (it is obviously from a Spanish-language station, but Adam speaks in English):

Of relevance to this website are Adam's comments about touring South America and what songs he most enjoys playing live.

The hosts asked Adam when U2 will next visit South America. As regular readers might recall, reports broke a few days ago that U2 are planning to tour South America at some point. After enthusing about Argentinian audiences, Adam opened up about touring intentions at the 16:10 mark, though he could not give any specific information. "We will be back; I'm not sure when. We're looking at the touring possibilities now, and 'as soon as possible' would be my answer. We miss you!" So a tour is definitely in the works, but it appears that the details are yet to be finalised.

Earlier in the interview, at the 10:30 mark, Adam replied to a question about what songs he enjoys playing live the most. His favourite song to play on the 360 Tour was "Moment of Surrender" since "that was a tune that was very unusual for U2 to do". Understandably, he has always loved doing "New Year's Day" and "With or Without You" because they are "very much about the bass". Adam went on to praise "Where the Streets Have No Name" as "fantastic" because "wherever you play it goes crazy". He concluded diplomatically by saying "there are a lot of good ones" to perform.

 Posted by Axver on Friday, September 19, 2014 @ 07:47:52 UTC | permalink | Comments

More tour hints

Today we have a few new tidbits about the tour, albeit small tidbits.

The first is very vague indeed. U2 are the subject of a Time feature, which you can read here. At the end, it provides information both on a second album and a tour: "There’s more music on the way ... a whole new album and a world tour." The band are not shying away from publicising their intentions to go on another big global tour. But can we get some more details?

Yes, we can get a smidgen more detail, thanks to a couple of interviews Bono did today. One was with KROQ's Kevin and Bean. You can listen to the full interview here. At the end of the interview, Bono spoke about touring. First he indicated that plans are in motion, but not finalised. "We've got some stuff up our sleeves about playing live and, you know, we are coming your way next year and maybe before that if we can cook up something." Could there be special promotional performances in the works for the last few months of the year? With the physical release of Songs of Innocence next month, that would make sense.

Bono then went on to talk about how he would like to play the songs. "I want to play some of them acoustically because these songs were designed ... [to be] great tunes that if you play them with acoustic guitar or on piano in a pub that they would stop people from going home at closing time. They're that kind of tunes and I want people to be aware of that ... I want people to just listen to the tunes and I think the best way to do that is to do some acoustic sessions." Combine this comment with the fact that the deluxe edition of Songs of Innocence will contain up to eight acoustic versions of the new songs, and you can see the band's passion and belief in this material suiting the acoustic treatment. Mid-show acoustic sets have not always been universally popular among fans, sometimes dismissed as an afterthought, but Bono's emphasis today on performing acoustic versions suggests the format has played a significant role in their recent thought.

Will these acoustic sessions be special promotional appearances, will they be integrated into the tour's setlist, or both? Well, Bono definitely alluded to the former in his interview. "If we can [do an acoustic session] with KROQ, that's what I'd like to do." Look out for a possible live performance on KROQ, then. It has happened before, back in 2000.

Another interview, with Jo Whiley, also indicates U2 will be doing some acoustic sessions for radio. After the 4:30 mark in the interview, Jo asks U2 if there might be some live acoustic shows "before Christmas". Bono says "I don't know ... if we are, we'll come on your show". Jo responds "will you come and do an acoustic session for me?" Bono: "Absolutely." She says she will check her schedule to make sure there is space for U2; "that session is booked". That escalated quickly!

This article was updated about 15 minutes after original publication to include the quotes from the Jo Whiley interview.

 Posted by Axver on Friday, September 19, 2014 @ 00:51:36 UTC | permalink | Comments

Previous articles:

· Axver's Tour Predictions: Boy and October September 17th, 2014
· U2 to tour South America in 2015? September 16th, 2014
· Axver's Tour Predictions: Songs of Innocence September 15th, 2014
· A Crumb of Tour Info September 13th, 2014
· The Miracle (Of A Surprise Release) September 11th, 2014
· Ordinary Love at the Oscars March 3rd, 2014
· A Concert Unlike Any Other February 18th, 2014
· Live debuts of Invisible and Ordinary Love on the Tonight Show February 18th, 2014
· U2 Perform, Continue Work on New Album in New York City June 7th, 2013
· Bono Performs In New York City May 18th, 2013

For older news, see our Archive.
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