“U2 fans have bigger egos than U2”

In this Irish Times interview Bono quotes will.i.am saying U2 fans have bigger egos than the members of the band:

“The thing about U2 that nobody seems to get,” says Bono, “is that the very things people think about us, which is the megalomania and the immodesty, they’re so far from the truth. People don’t see that. We had will.i.am doing some work on the new album and he was shocked by the absence of ego. He said: ‘Your fans have bigger egos than you do.’


Part 2 of Sean O’Hagan’s U2 video diary


Having started his journey in Fez, Sean O’Hagan’s video diary now captures the band in recording sessions in Dublin, London and New York.

Watch the video on guardian.co.uk

In the interview published alongside the video, Bono mentions U2’s intention to release another album this year. Earlier interviews had already hinted at a dusk/dawn type of album combo.

The future is another question for another interview. How long can U2 stay meaningful? Where will rock’s greatest adventure end? For now, there is enough material left over from the sessions for an album that, Bono says, will be released before the end of the year. It will be “a more meditative album on the theme of pilgrimage”.

Elbow’s Guy Garvey: ‘We Were Huge U2 Fans’

Guy Garvey, lead singer of the British band Elbow, says the band members were all U2 fans. Elbow, who won the 2008 Mercury prize, has recorded U2’s song Running to Standstill for the new War Child album, ‘Heroes’.

Guy Garvey - Elbow
Photo copyright cvodb, 2008

Garvey says it was the first song the band ever learnt together:

“We were huge U2 fans… it was the first thing we ever played together as nippers”, said Garvey. “It was too lovely a thing that we’d also covered it many, many moons ago.”

You can listen to Guy Garvey being interviewed by XFM’s Ian Camfield, and you can also hear Elbow’s lush cover of ‘Running To Stand Still’ on the XFM website.

The War Child album ‘Heroes’ will be released on February 16th.

Continue for the full tracklisting

Lanois: Bono wanted ‘spiritual songs for the future’

Alan Cross on ExploreMusic.com’s blog has started posting the transcript of his interview with Daniel Lanois.

“We started in Fez Morocco because we wanted a musical and exotic location. One of my first conversations with Bono was one about future hymns—spiritual songs for the future—and he was at the opinion that Morocco would be a great crossroads for a universal feeling for the album.”

Read more on ExploreMusic.com

You can also listen to two brief soundbytes from the interview on AtU2.com in which Lanois reveals he’s seen the band’s preliminary set-drawings, including a 360-degree stage, with all the ‘artillery’ out of the sight line.

Bono salutes the Chairman of the Board

In Bono’s first column for the New York Times, the singer – perhaps against type-cast – muses on believability, duality, “hubris and humility, blue eyes and red” in a new, less certain year.

“If you want to hear the least sentimental voice in the history of pop music finally crack, though — shhhh — find the version of Frank’s ode to insomnia, “One for My Baby (and One More for the Road),” hidden on “Duets.” Listen through to the end and you will hear the great man break as he truly sobs on the line, “It’s a long, long, long road.” I kid you not.”

Forget the petrol pump attendant. If Bono hadn’t been in a band, he would have made an a-list blogger.

The Edge: ‘It’s totally frantic’

Q magazine talks to – a very busy – The Edge about U2’s new album. The guitarist sheds some light on the album’s sound and confirms some of the song titles that have floated around the web for some time.

“‘We wanted to give it some variety. There is some dark, heavy stuff but there are also some lighter things. Some we’ve really had to sweat to get and some just came so easily.” Work-in-progress highlights include “f—k-off live rocker” “Breathe”; “For Your Love,” which Edge says is one of his best-ever riffs; and the aforementioned “Get On Your Boots” (“Eddie Cochran with barbershop harmonies”). Other notable tracks include the eight-minute-long “Moment Of Surrender” and “No Line On The Horizon,” inspired by a distortion box called Death By Audio recommended by ex-Secret Machines guitarist Ben Curtis.”

The article suggests the band is still unsure whether to release the album pre- or post Christmas.

Read the full story at U2france.com.

‘Shooting Peacocks up the arse’, vintage interview surfaces

Debbi Voisey of U2 fanzine “The Real Thing” has donated a phone interview given by Bono (Chicago, June 26th, 1997 on the first leg of the Popmart tour) to the U2 interview archive. This must have been one of the last fanzine interviews U2 have done, although I’m sure someone will correct me on that.

You can read her own introduction to the interview on her blog and listen to the interview on U2source.com.

Meet the U23D film editor

Olivier Wicki, editor of U23D, talks to U2 Swiss Home, about his involvement in the movie and some of the technical aspects of shooting and editing 3D film.

So the film is going to be a mix of footage from a number of different locations?
Yes 5 countries.
Does this cause any problems with the editing?
Well! Well! Well! As the viewer you are going to be immersed in a 3D experience so fantastic that you will forget about any discontinuity. So let me know if you see any!

Read the full interview

Bono speaks on World Aids Day

Bono tells Paul Vallely of The Independent why people in rich nations can make a difference to the Aids disaster.

“Do the maths,” says Bono. “It costs about $5 a week to pay for the two pills a day it takes to keep someone with HIV alive.”

And, talking about the work the band has been doing on their new album Bono reveals, yes, here it comes, ‘The Edge is on fire’:

“World music this is not,” he says, though U2 fans will “feel the difference”. Polyrhythmic is the word he chooses with a self-deprecating laugh. “U2 in dancefloor shock. Normally when you play a U2 tune, it clears the dancefloor. And that may not be true of this. There’s some trance influences. But there’s some very hardcore guitar coming out of The Edge. Real molten metal. It’s not like anything we’ve ever done before, and we don’t think it sounds like anything anyone else has done either.”

U2log.com predicts the album will come out sounding just like U2, just the way we like it.

Read more and find out about Bono’s number one in Ghana

Oh yes, he’s the great confuser

U2 and R.E.M. producer Jacknife Lee finds time to talk to Times Online about his work and upcoming fourth solo album.

“U2 called. I was brought in for the Eno-esque role of the Great Confuser, throwing out mad ideas.” He played on and partly produced How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. Not everyone appreciates his approach. “I did a session with Rick Rubin, but he didn’t like to be confused…”

Read the full interview.