"Our music in the early '80s, it might have been ecstatic, but it wasn't really sexy, was it? Now we're sexy and ecstatic."
-- Bono, 2001
Bits & Bytes
A collection of the latest U2 news and announcements posted by our staff.
The #U2chat on Twitter is back!
Tonight and Sunday, we'll host two chats via our @atu2 account. Tonight's chat will begin at 9:00 pm ET/6:00 pm PT and will be hosted by Sherry Lawrence. On Sunday, Tassoula E. Kokkoris will host a chat beginning at 3:00 pm ET/12:00 pm PT. (You can use TimeandDate.com for time zone conversions.)
Sherry and Tassoula will guide the conversation through topics such as:
We'll get it started with tweets from our @atu2 account, and we'll plan on hosting each chat for an hour. If time allows and our hosts are able, the chats may go a little longer than that. Everyone is welcome to participate.
How to Participate or Follow Along
Everyone participating should use the #U2chat hashtag in all of your tweets -- whether you're replying to someone else or just sending out your own (non-reply) tweet. By using the same hashtag, it'll make it easier for everyone to follow along.
You can log into the Twitter platform directly and type #U2Chat into the search bar (the one with the magnifying glass), then hit “enter.” This will pull up three options for viewing: “Top,” “All,” or “People You Follow.” For the full experience, I’d recommend you view “all,” but obviously, tailor the stream to suit your preferences.
We look forward to chatting with you on Twitter!
For the second time in the band's history, U2 is on the cover of TIME magazine. The September 29, 2014, issue features a black-and-white photo of the band with the headline: The New U2 - The Veteran Rock Band Faces The Future.
TIME also has four separate U2 content pieces on its website today:
That's the cover story and only a preview is free; magazine subscribers can access the full article.
That article talks about a "secret project with Apple" that everyone hopes will help artists get compensated for their work.
Bono tells TIME he hopes that a new digital music format in the works will prove so irresistibly exciting to music fans that it will tempt them again into buying music -- whole albums as well as individual tracks. The point isn’t just to help U2 but less well known artists and others in the industry who can’t make money, as U2 does, from live performance.
The article also reiterates previous reports that another U2 album (and a tour) is on the way.
That's a short video addressing the launch of Songs Of Innocence, which we'll embed here:
That's a totally unrelated video clip of U2 talking about some of the news stories that influenced them as kids, but near the end, Larry and Bono reveal that Larry's son, Aaron Elvis, will be on the cover of U2's next album. Here's the video:
The new issue of TIME should be available in stores in the next couple days. U2 was also on TIME's cover in 1987 when the magazine called the band Rock's Hottest Ticket.
UPDATE: Via friends on Twitter, we're told that U2 is only on the cover of international editions of TIME magazine. The article(s) are in the US edition, but the band isn't on the cover.
Bono called into KROQ's Kevin & Bean show this morning to talk about Songs Of Innocence and how things have gone since last week's launch. Bono said that he hopes to do a live acoustic session in the KROQ studios in the near future. He said "We have some stuff up our sleeves about playing live and we are coming your way next year and maybe before that if we can cook up something. I want to play some of them acoustically ... I want people to just listen to the tunes and I think the best way to do that is to do some acoustic sessions."
In case you missed the interview, you can listen here.
U2's concert schedule is officially empty right now, but recent comments from U2 manager Guy Oseary suggest that might change soon. Meanwhile, Bono is saying U2 will do a full tour beginning in 2015. More on that in a moment; first, let's look at what the new manager said.
Speaking to Mashable in an interview published late Sunday, Guy Oseary didn't give away any details about upcoming performances, but he seems to be suggesting that U2 is planning at least a few gigs to help promote Songs Of Innocence:
I think we've done enough disruption for a minute. We plan on continuing to support this album. We have the deluxe version coming Oct. 14. We also want to share this album with people from a live perspective, playing songs here and there for an audience.
With the physical album being released on October 13/14, it's possible that U2 could do a show around that time and maybe others throughout the holiday shopping season. It's also possible they might not do full U2 concerts, but something more like performances on Saturday Night Live and other things like that.
As for a proper U2 tour, Bono tells the Irish Times that'll happen in 2015:
We don't have a firm start date for the next U2 tour, but it will be next year. We need good ideas to go back out there live. Expect something new, something fresh.
U2's former manager, Paul McGuinness, recently told Hot Press the same thing about a U2 tour happening in 2015.
Billboard posted today an interview with Guy Oseary, U2's manager. It's a long interview, in which he talks mainly about the launch of Songs Of Innocence on Tuesday at the Apple event.
It's worth to highlight what he says about the new songs that will be part of the album, which will be released on Oct. 14.
"There's four brand-new songs, and Gary Kelly [Interscope's head of retail sales] can tell you there's a bunch of acoustic versions of songs from the album, too. So it's probably gonna be anywhere between nine or 11 songs that were not on the standard."
Oseary was questioned if we could expect another deal from Apple and U2 in the future. He says:
"We're working on other things as well with Apple that have to do with how music is heard and innovation, with [iTunes VP of content] Robert Kondrk leading that charge. There's a lot of things still to come that are really interesting. The band really wants people to engage with albums, they want them to support the art form of artwork and lyrics and video content and just get into their music in a much different way than an MP3 file. This is a long relationship."
Paul McGuinness isn't U2's day-to-day manager anymore, but he still likely knows plenty about the band's overall plans. And those plans include a tour next summer, as he told Hot Press after U2's surprise release of Songs Of Innocence on Tuesday:
"I think you can expect a major tour starting next summer that will in every way be what people expect of U2 - groundbreaking, unique and world-beating."
McGuinness also talks about the way the new album was released and the arrangement between U2 and Apple. Check the Hot Press website for the full story.
Tweets by @atu2