"The last time we took a TV station on the road -- this time we are taking a supermarket."
-- Bono, on Popmart, 1997
Column: off the record ..., vol. 12-535
October 07, 2012
One of the reasons that we started doing this OTR column back in September 2001 was that we often receive tips and rumors that we want to share, but they don't seem to fit on the site as an actual news story. Like this one:
New U2 album in late 2013 with a tour to follow beginning in U.S. arenas in the spring of 2014, then moving on to Europe after that -- possibly in stadiums.
If that was coming from a source we've heard from before, we might put it on the home page as a news story. But the source -- someone who would be in position to know -- is new to us, so for now we'll treat it as a rumor and share it here in OTR. Plus, it's talking about things that would be more than a year away, and we all know that "U2 time" is not like regular time. So, who knows what might happen between now and late next year?
If it ends up being true, I'd say it's the right thing for U2 to do. I don't think they have any business trying to do another stadium tour in North America. Yes, they just had the biggest-selling tour of all-time and that involved a couple jaunts through North America, but tickets were not difficult to come by. And some of the people who ended up with tickets weren't even familiar with U2's music -- a topic that I wrote about in an earlier OTR column.
Arenas in North America makes perfect sense. The way the rumor is described is exactly how the Vertigo tour played out in 2005, so a similar plan next time wouldn't be a surprise.
We're a week into October and there's been no word of any U2 music release coming to store shelves soon. As Aaron Sams wrote a couple months ago, U2 has been consistently putting out something for the past several years -- the releases often timed to maximize holiday season shopping.
For now, the only official release is a book: From The Ground Up, which is due for release in North America on November 27. (And sooner in other countries, from what I understand.)
Dylan Jones, who's credited as author on the book, wrote a lengthy piece about the tour (and book) in the Daily Mail this weekend. And the folks at U2tour.de already got their hands on a copy and have reviewed the book; you can read their review in English or German.
Saw this come through the news alerts: Stuart Morgan, who you may know as Adam C.'s bass tech when U2 is touring, is busy these days being bass tech for a band called Most Thieves.
And finally, for the U2 fan that has everything: the Bono bowl set. It's "both practical and decorative." Just like Bono himself. Also, "microwave and dishwasher safe" ... not like Bono.
Until next time, thx for reading!
(c) @U2, 2012.