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"[I]t's absurd that a singer in a rock band puts on a pinstripe suit and goes for a walk down Wall Street banging on doors. But you know what? They opened." — Bono

Bono talks new songs, SOE with Bill Flanagan on SiriusXM



Bono gives an almost track-by-track rundown of Songs Of Experience in a new interview that premiered Wednesday night on SiriusXM radio. The hour-long conversation was taped in September while U2 was in New York City and aired on Bill Flanagan's Written In My Soul, a regular program on VOLUME (channel 106).

Although there was no hard news to come out of the interview, Bono went into great detail on a number of Songs Of Experience tracks, reciting lyrics and explaining the origins and meanings of many songs. Here are some highlights:

  • Bono mentioned a new song that hasn't been discussed before, "The Book Of Your Heart," that will only appear on the SOE deluxe edition. "Yeats has this phrase," Bono explained, "he says he 'desires a poetry as cold and as passionate as the dawn', and I wanted to write about the cold passion of great relationships.... It's about the knowingness that you need to help get your partner through their life, and vice versa."
  • He described "Summer Of Love" as "so light a listen that you can miss the dark undertow in it."
  • The new track "Landlady" is about his wife Ali, and how she "paid my way" in U2's early days, Bono said.
  • Bono shared some details about the track order on SOE, saying that "Get Out Of Your Own Way" is followed by "American Soul" and then "Summer Of Love." He called them a "suite of songs that brings the personal and the political on the album together in a nice way." He also mentioned that "The Showman" is followed by "The Little Things That Give You Away." Bono has previously mentioned that the latter is the last song on the new album.
  • He also recited a lyric from "The Showman" that includes the line, "you look a little more better," making it likely that this song was previously titled "Much More Better" (as mentioned in a 2015 Q magazine interview).
  • There was also discussion about new tracks "The Lights Of Home" and "The Blackout." The studio version of the latter song was played as the bumper music (for about 20-30 seconds) going into a commercial break.

There was also discussion on topics such as Bono's humanitarian work, how he balances it with his art, and even the idea of 2001's "Kite" as a precursor to the topics on Songs Of Experience. It's a great conversation and it'll be on again several times over the next month -- see the SiriusXM blog for a full list of replays. As far as we know, it's only available to SiriusXM subscribers. But you might keep an eye on their SoundCloud channel, too -- scroll down for four clips from the interview now and cross your fingers the whole conversation eventually shows up.