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Friday 25th September 2015

U2 talk about the controversial Apple deal and Bono's bike accident

THE OCTOBER issue of Q magazine features an extensive cover story on U2 and their recent tour of the USA. Wrote Dorian Lynskey, "'Songs Of Innocence' their best album in many years, should have been that rebirth, but it was overshadowed last September by its release strategy: deposited, without warning, into half a billion iClouds. Their first big gambit without former manager and mentor Paul McGuinness was a PR disaster that fuelled U2's detractors. Two months later, Bono had a serious bicycle accident in Central Park, which required five hours of emergency surgery, postponed Innocence + Experience and banjaxed all promotion. Thus U2 began this tour in Vancouver in May with everything to prove. I ask Bono if he believes in bad luck. 'I don't believe in luck,' he says. 'I walk under ladders. I'd have 13 tattooed on my arse without any problem. But I do think the universe can turn cold and nasty. I'm never surprised when the world gets a bit ugly. I'm never surprised when U2 meets resistance.'"

In the same article U2's Adam Clayton spoke about the criticism after the Apple deal. "I had always expected there'd be a bit of a backlash. What I didn't anticipate was that people would pay the songs so little interest. Then the bike crash happened. Not having a presence in the culture other than that we were the bad guys who put our album into people's phones, that did put us on the back foot." But, he maintains, the giveaway ultimately worked. In its first month alone, the total of 26 million downloads exceeded lifetime sales of 'The Joshua Tree'. "We've got an audience of younger people who know those songs and they don't know the old songs. It's not what you'd expect." CR

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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