The four members of popular Irish rockers U2 have been unusually candid in a round of interviews given on the eve of the release of the latest album, There's Worse Ways To Kill 50 Minutes. Tired of thinking up increasingly extravagant hyperbole to make what is essentially the same as their last three albums seem like the second coming, the band have decided to speak plainly.
"I mean we had it all wrong promoting our last release" says Bono. "We tried to make it sound exciting, revolutionary, important. But then we realised people who want exciting, revolutionary, important music aren't buying latter-day U2 albums are they? And that's where we got the first single, "Dad-Rock Doldrums" from."
Atypical critic quotes such as "No surprises here", "What you'd expect" and "Are you *sure* this isn't a compilation?" are proudly emblazoned upon promotional materials. And the strategy is paying off with crowds of frightened middle-aged men up and down the country clamoring for the album.
"It's the least adventurous album we've ever made" says Edge. "Over the last few albums I've added more and more guitar pedals to find new sounds, the pedals were beginning to look like a keyboard. On tour I was so focussed on working the pedals that a few times I forgot I'd left the actual guitar backstage. It was great to get back to basics, such as pretending that Adam Clayton is relevant to the band's sound." During the interview, Clayton surprised his fellow band members by revealing that he had not even attended recording sessions for the previous two U2 albums.
Asked about his lyrical direction on this release, Bono blows a rasberry and laughs while the rest of the band make armpit fart noises. "Really now" says Bono "if you're concerned about my lyrical direction then I'm concerned about you. If you must know I wrote this on a bit of paper:
"Soaring angels take flight on the wings of love in the early light
A new day begins in the breath that floats from a child's eye"
Then cut the individual words up with scissors and shook them around in a hat."
Musically Larry Mullen says "We all just looked at each with scrunched up faces and shouted at each other with forced enthusiasm about how much we were rocking out. We should've scrubbed that out of the finished audio really. But at other times, when we were aiming for something a little more serious, we established a really sincere, intense atmosphere, mostly by stopping playing."
Edge has the final word. "Basically we want people to feel that if they bought this album, that they'll convince themselves that it's kinda alright, and they would buy the next one too out of a sort of grim commitment borne out of habit rather than affection, like being in an abusive relationship."
Bono laughs and blows another rasberry. More armpit farts follow.