Monday, October 31, 2011

U2.COM : 'Real Gone Kid'

'I don’t really remember how it happened.'

In the second part of our conversation with Maria McKee to mark the release of the twentieth anniversary edition of Achtung Baby, she strains  her memory to recall the songs she recorded with U2 at the time, discusses a  film she's made with her husband... and remembers a walk-on part by her pet rabbit.

Happy birthday Hit-man!!!!!

U2.COM : Twenty and Out

'Achtung Baby is an extravagant feat of misdirection,' reports the new Q Magazine in a 5 star review of the 20th anniversary rerelease. 'Wrapping the darkest, most searching lyrics of U2's career in a title taken from Mel Brook's's The Producers and all manner of audiovisual hoopla. 'Underneath that thin layer of trash it's blood and guts...'

Edge and Bono talked with Edna Gunderson of USA Today about revisiting the album. 'How big a deal do we make of an anniversary when we're in the middle of what we're doing now?' asks Edge. 'We had a hard time figuring that out. We're not a heritage act. We're still very active. But this record was so pivotal that we felt it was OK to revisit it.'

Rediscovering the wildly different lyrics and arrangements on the early "kindergarten" versions of the songs was revelatory, reports Rolling Stone. ' 'Tryin' to Throw Your Arms Around the World,' for instance, sounds like an Irish folk tune. 'The first time the paint goes on the canvas is a very, very exciting moment,' says Bono. He was intrigued by a line in the early 'Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses' that recasts its story as a 'parasitic' love affair ('Your innocence I've experienced'), while the Edge is convinced the more restrained vocal melody on that version is superior to the released track.'

Catch some exclusive excerpts from Davis Guggenheim's documentary From The Sky Down, telling the real story behind the making of Achtung Baby.

Find the complete tracklistings on all five formats of the 20th anniversary edition, along with details on rare video, unreleased songs and b-sides

And check out more news stories about the rerelease of Achtung Baby.

Friday, October 28, 2011

U2.COM : 'AHK-toong BAY-bi'

Nine Inch Nails covering Zoo Station. Damien Rice performing One. Patti Smith taking on Until The End Of The World and The Killers making over Ultraviolet (Light My Way).

The December edition of Q magazine has one of the most collectable U2 gifts. Ever.  'AHK-toong BAY-bi Covered', an entire CD of great acts reimagining  Achtung Baby to mark its 20th anniversary. There's also a revealing and in-depth interview with the band in the magazine.

Easy to get hold of December Q  in the UK but we figured there might be some others of you around the world who'd like your own copy  - so we've got some in the store. Check out the tracklisting and order your copy.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

U2.COM : In The Name Of Love [video]

U2.COM : 'Bongolese' [video]

'Ah this is Bongolese... this is how they write their songs.'

Making the new documentary to mark the 20th anniversary of Achtung Baby, Director Davis Guggenheim discovered how the band write their songs.

Bono calls on the G20 to fight extreme poverty in Africa, even in tough times

Supporting Africa is “not just a moral imperative, but a strategic imperative” said Bono this week in Paris, reminding the French people of the importance of the upcoming G20 Summit in Cannes and the impact it could have on people living in some of the poorest parts of the planet. The co-founder of ONE was in France for two days last week working to raise awareness about the issues at the upcoming Summit that will no doubt have significant implications for the continent of Africa as a whole.
While underlining the severity of the current economic crisis, Bono made the case that even in these difficult times, investing in effective programs that are saving millions of lives is not just the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do in an increasingly globalized world.
He highlighted the importance of the French government continuing its support for effective programs that are fighting extreme poverty in Africa and crises such as the current famine in Somalia, saying, “It is not normal to have a famine …We should be able to prevent a drought from systematically becoming a famine.”
The French have been leaders in the fight against HIV/AIDS as seen by their continued support of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, and they are in a unique position to forge stronger links with Africa in the future as a trading and economic partner. And aid is making a difference: 4 million Africans have benefited from AIDS treatment since 2002.
When asked about his own political influence with heads of state during an interview with the French TV show “Le Grand Journal” on Canal+, Bono stressed that much of the power comes from his audience, many of whom are voting age, including U2 fans, and ONE campaigners. “It’s not me the politicians fear, it’s the audience,” he said, urging individuals to mobilize and keep pressure on their governments to ensure that the world’s poorest are not forgotten, even in these tough times.
At the upcoming G20 in Cannes, ONE will be calling upon global leaders to support innovative finance mechanisms for development, to prevent future food crises by smart investments in agriculture and to take concrete actions in order to improve infrastructure in Africa. Please add your voice to our petition and ensure that world leaders break the cycle of famine.

source :

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Revisiting U2's dark, dramatic 'Achtung Baby'

HOLLYWOOD – Bono and The Edge are enjoying vodka martinis at the inveterate Musso & Frank Grill, a celebrated time capsule of bygone Hollywood and the former haunt of Charlie Chaplin, Raymond Chandler and Rudolph Valentino. The dark booth seems a fitting spot for the singer and guitarist to ponder U2's newest project: a dusky catalog jewel.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

U2.COM : U22 - The Ultimate U2360° Subscribers Setlist. Vote Here!

U2360°. 110 shows. 30 countries. 7 million fans. It was the tour that broke all the records and now you get to create the soundtrack, the ultimate U2360° setlist.
Ever wanted to select the tracks for a U2 set ? This is your chance!

The tracklisting of
'U22',  a live double-CD collection,  will be decided by you, our subscribers.
Over 26 months the band performed songs from their most recent album No Line On The Horizon all the way back to their debut Boy, playing at least 22 tracks every night.
So what were the stand-out songs?  The tracks which define this tour ?  Is there a song you could  never leave out of a U2 live set? What surprised you on U2360° and what track never failed to deliver?

Listed in alphabetical order, the tracks have been drawn from shows in each of the 30 countries where the U2360° spaceship touched down.

1. Take a listen to the audio clips.
2. Select the 22 you'd like to see on 'U22'.
3. Hit 'Submit'
4. Check the latest results.*

When the voting period is over we'll reveal the final tracklisting and you'll receive your own copy of the double CD, 'U22',  presented in a  custom-designed gatefold sleeve.

'U22' is a limited-edition release for subscribers only.

* In order to keep the final results a surprise, this snapshot of the latest voting will only be available for some of the voting period.

Please Note: Voting is  open to current Subscribers - or anyone who subscribes/resubscribes during the voting period. One vote per subscriber. Voting closes on DECEMBER 2ND.

U2.COM : The Edge at the 2011 Q Awards [video]

The band and Paul McGuinness were at the Grosvenor House Hotel on London's Park Lane for the 2011 Q Awards this afternoon.

As the UK music monthly marked its  25th anniversary there were lots of old friends  present to pick up awards, including Snow Patrol ('Classic Song'), Coldplay ('Best Act In The World Today') and Noel Gallagher ('Q Icon').

Bono, Edge, Adam and Larry were all on stage to hear readers had voted them 'Greatest Act Of The Last 25 Years'.

'I remember back before Q.' said Edge. 'It was, 'Thou shall not go platinum, thou shall not go to America... Q changed all that.'

The award was 'humbling, added Bono, 'If the Clash were up here, we'd be carrying their gear.'

Check out all the other winners over at Q.

Monday, October 24, 2011

'If we don't come up with a good reason to make a new album, we should just f*** off'

‘Achtung Baby’ was the making of U2. As the album is rereleased after 20 years, alongside a film about the band, Bono and
Edge recall the turmoil that surrounded the recording and talk about their future
IT’S WHEN THREE glasses are raised to toast “12-step programmes” that you realise perhaps one too many cocktails has been taken. It’s a bar in Toronto and the caipirinhas were Bono’s idea, with Edge not slow to get his round in. “If we don’t come up with a very good reason to make a new album, we should just f*** off,” says Bono. “Why does anyone need a new U2 album?” For the first time in their 35-year career the notoriously “faster, stronger, higher” band have put the brakes on and taken a long look in the rear-view mirror. A new film about the band, From the Sky Down , documents how their huge success in the 1980s provoked a bout of self-loathing and almost broke up the band as they struggled to stay true to their vision of a band forged in the white heat of Dublin’s punk/new wave movement.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

U2.COM : 'We Want To Be In The Band...'

'We've tried this going to college thing and this going to work thing... and we want to be in the band.'

To mark the 20th anniversary edition of Achtung Baby at the end of the month, check out another clip from Davis Guggenheim's From The Sky Down.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Blind Man Given Bono's Guitar Pens Song

MESA - This is a story about dreams coming true, but it didn't start that way. At 14 years old, Adam Bevell of Mesa was told he was going blind and nothing could stop it. Adam got through it -- in part -- inspired by the music of U2.
He learned how to play guitar, a skill that would lead him to a date with destiny -- a date with U2, arguably the greatest rock bank in the world.
Millions have seen them, but few have ever played with them. Adam Bevell got that rare chance three months ago in Nashville.

U2.COM : Larry in From The Sky Down [video]

'The Trabant had broken down and (this police officer) was berating him in German...'

Filming in Berlin, Davis Guggenheim, Director of From The Sky Down, recalls how Larry suggested going for a drive.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

U2.COM : 'Go Get Maria!'

History remembers the LA singer Maria McKee for her belting hit single ‘Show Me Heaven’. But she also fronted Lone Justice, the celebrated US band which supported U2 on the Unforgettable Fire and Joshua Tree tours.

Friendship, a solo career, and a second life in Ireland followed - where she recorded two songs with U2 during the Achtung Baby era. These will see the light of day on the 20th anniversary release. Brian Draper helped jog her memory. When did you become aware that you had a unique voice?
I was always singing, but I didn’t know whether my voice was good. Then one day, I was in Sunday School and the guy playing piano singled me out to come and sing, and he made me sing this song over and over. He was just watching and playing for me, and he was giddy. I don’t know if he connected with the joy I felt when I sang...

Monday, October 10, 2011

U2.COM : 'AHK-toong BAY-bi Covered'

A host of famous names, including The Killers, Jack White, Nine Inch Nails, Snow Patrol, Patti Smith and Depeche Mode, have re-created U2’s Achtung Baby album in celebration of its 20th anniversary.

The collection of brand new recordings, 'AHK-toong BAY-bi Covered', also marks the 25th anniversary of Q Magazine, and Q Editor in Chief Paul Rees said he believes the album sets a new - and higher - benchmark for the growing popularity of free CD's.  'Not only in the sense that each of the tracks are brand new recordings by some of the biggest and most iconic names in music such as Jack White, Nine Inch Nails and Patti Smith, but also in that several of them mark the first new material we have heard from these acts in a long time – such as those by The Killers, Damien Rice and Garbage.
'This is an entirely appropriate way to mark Q's anniversary and that of Achtung Baby, one of the pivotal albums in our lifetime.'

The magazine/CD package will be available in store from October 26th and also from

The full track listing for 'AHK-toong BAY-bi Covered': Nine Inch Nails – Zoo Station;
U2 (Jacques Lu Cont Mix) – Even Better Than The Real Thing;  Damien Rice – One; Patti Smith – Until The End Of The World; Garbage – Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses; Depeche Mode – So Cruel; Snow Patrol – Mysterious Ways; The Fray – Trying To Throw Your Arms Around The World; Gavin Friday – The Fly; The Killers – Ultraviolet (Light My Way); Glasvegas – Acrobat; Jack White – Love Is Blindness.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

U2.COM : Sky Down Sneak Preview [video]

'We started to be those earnest, po-faced men...'

We're counting down to the 20th anniversary edition of Achtung Baby and tonight Davis Guggenheim's film From The Sky Down begins airing around the world.

UK and Irish TV viewers get to see the documentary this evening but right now our subscribers can catch some advance clips and and our interview with Director Davis Guggenheim.

(NB - If you're tweeting about From The Sky Down, use the hashtag #theskydown. Thanks! )

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Bono One charity advert faces TV ban

A campaign advert made by a charity founded by U2 frontman Bono has been banned from UK TV because it may breach rules covering political advertising.

The short film is part of One's Hungry No More campaign which calls for governments to help tackle the causes of famine in Africa.

Clearcast, which approves adverts, said it could be in breach of rules laid down by the 2003 Communications Act.

One said it was "absurd" the advert could not be shown.

The minute-long film, called The F Word: Famine is the Real Obscenity, features stars including Bono, George Clooney, Colin Farrell and Sex and the City star Kristin Davis.

A Clearcast spokeswoman said: "These rules ensure that adverts aren't being broadcast by bodies whose objects are wholly or mainly political.

"One appears to be caught by this rule as they state that part of their raison d'etre is to pressure political leaders.

"It also appears that a number of the claims made in the version of the ad that we have seen are directed towards a political end, which is again against the rules."'

Urgent action

However Adrian Lovett, Europe director of One said the charity was not a political party and had no political affiliation.

"We recognise the purpose of the broadcasting code is to keep political propaganda off British television," he said.

"But our ad highlights the desperate plight of 750,000 people in east Africa who, the UN warns, could die before the end of the year.

"Unless we keep the spotlight on this crisis and the need for urgent action, those people will be forgotten. Who can object to that message? We are challenging this decision and hope the broadcasters will reconsider."

Clearcast said that a broadcaster carrying an advert in breach of the rules on political advertising faces a possible fine from broadcasting watchdog Ofcom or even a revocation of its licence.

source :

Friday, October 7, 2011

U2.COM : 'From The Sky Down' This Sunday

On Sunday, TV viewers in the UK and Ireland are first to see From The Sky Down, Davis Guggenheim's documentary about the making of Achtung Baby.

Twenty years on the film  'traces the album's genesis using animation and previously unseen footage from Berlin and Dublin alongside interviews with the band as they reflect on what was a key chapter in their career.
'In the terrain of rock bands - implosion or explosion is seemingly inevitable. ' says Guggenheim. 'U2 has defied the gravitational pull towards destruction... this band has endured and thrived. From The Sky Down asks the question why.'

BBC1 broadcast details/ timings.

Broadcasts are also coming up in the next few weeks through: Showtime in the US; Superchannel in Canada; ABC in Australia;  Multishow in Brazil;  Wow Wow in Japan; Sky in Italy and NTR in Holland. (Check local listings for confirmed dates and times.)

If you're watching in the UK and Ireland on Sunday and planning to tweet about the documentary, use the hashtag #theskydown.

U2.COM : 'Truly Great'

'What made Steve Jobs truly great is that he was only interested in doing truly great things.  He was  bored by an easy ride or easy profit.  In a world littered with dull objects, he brought the beauty of clean lines and clear thought. This rhyme of intellect and intuition could be applied to a wide range of subjects from the US education system, to sculpture, to the fight against HIV/AIDS where his support of (RED) literally transformed the lives of two million people in Africa.

He changed music. He changed film. He changed the personal computer and turned telephony on its head while he was at it.  He was tenacious in the extreme, his toughness never more evident than these past few years in his fight for his life as well as his companies'.

Steve told me as proud as he was of Apple and Pixar, his real pride was his family.  He was a thoughtful and tender father, and loved nothing more than hanging out in the house with his belle Laurene and the kids.

I already miss of a very small group of anarchic Americans who through technology literally invented the 21st century.  We will all miss the hardware software Elvis.'


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The F Word: Famine is the Real Obscenity (US)

U2.COM : 'Time For The F Word'

'Drought is an act of nature. Famine is man made...'

Bono joins stars from entertainment, the media and politics to launch 'The F Word: Famine is the Real Obscenity', a  major campaign spotlighting the famine in Somalia that has killed more than 30,000 children in three months.

Among those appearing in a series of spots directed by Jesse Dylan are: former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, Somali-born singer and poet K’naan, media magnate Arianna Huffington, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg,  former first daughters Jenna and Barbara Bush, George Clooney, Jessica Alba, Christy Turlington Burns, Kristin Davis, Colin Farrell, Joe Jonas, Liya Kebede, Idris Elba, Rob Lowe, Ewan McGregor and Evan Rachel Wood.

Monday, October 3, 2011

U2.COM : 'Blood and Guts'

In the run-up to the twentieth anniversary re-releases of Achtung Baby we're inviting guest writers to reflect on what the album originally meant to them, why it's so significant in the U2 canon and how it fits with their own story.

Here Matt McGee, founder & Editor of @U2, recalls how the album demanded he make a choice - and the song that helped him decide.