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jreed

U2 has one album left in them after Experience

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Disclaimer: I believe U2 is greatest band in the world.  I haven't seen or heard a better band in my lifetime and I don't think I ever will.  Also, I'm a paying fan club member and own almost everything they've ever released.  If I don't have a physical copy of it, I'm sure I have it digitally.

I believe U2 will release one more album after Experience and call it day.  I'm thinking it's just a matter of time, I think they know they have nothing more to prove.  Quite frankly, I hope they do what R.E.M. did.  Put out one last amazing album and then call it a day.  Everybody shakes hands and goes home.  I also don't believe that the band can keep up the current touring pace at their age.  A U2 tour lasts anywhere from 2 to 3 years.  In my opinion, the I+E tour has never actually stopped.  I would go so far as to say that The Joshua Tree 2017 tour was part of it.  I would also argue that the stadium shows that were done were supposed to be I+E shows.  Do I want them to retire?  Selfishly, yes!  There is a quality U2 possesses that no other band possesses, that goes for The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Zeppelin, Pearl Jam, Oasis, Nirvana, and anyone else you want to add.  That quality is nobility.  Their music is noble and when it's played or heard, it reaches out for the very best of everyone of us.  That just doesn't exist anymore.  I don't want this band to go the way of the Stones.  I love the Stones, but those guys look a little ridiculous these days.  I just don't want to see Bono and The Edge trying to run around the stage at the age of 70.  I'd be afraid it'd cheapen their music somehow, and knowing how the general public hates a sell out, it would look as though they have gone that route.  Finally, Bono keeps referring to this "brush with his own mortality" recently, which I don't know if you've been keeping score at home, that makes three times recently that Bono has almost met a fatal end.  If it was bad then, then that has to have some effect on his body, and I'm not a fan of the idea of Bono collapsing and dying on stage.  Some of you will wholeheartedly disagree with me and I welcome that.  I'd love to hear another perspective.  Thanks for taking a second to read this crazy ramble.  I hope you're all well in the U2niverse!

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Great first post.;)

Would agree with some of that - but sure 50 is the new 40, and 70 is the new 50. It's not an age thing for me - it's quality of the music - but U2 have climbed that tree that very few do - any release is now an 'eagerly awaited release!'

It's a good place for them to be. And, y'know what? It's not a bad place for fans of their music to be too.

 

The thing for me about this band is - my life, original line up, health is with them n me thus far - that's not the norm - when's something going to give!:mellow:

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I also think about whether I hope they make one last big splash at some point and call it a day, or just keep rocking into the horizon...I agree I don't really want them to turn into something like the Stones, but I also don't want them to ever retire and not be making music and performing!  

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I was a huge REM fan and I think their case was slightly different. After Bill Berry left the spell was broken and they struggled to keep the magic alive. Their last four records never quite hit the heights of pre-1996 and the remaining members had other projects they wanted to pursue. I can't imagine Larry Mullen driving a tractor just yet! 

Frankly, I think U2 love performing together more and they are a much better band now than REM were at the end. The idea of U2 'doing an REM' fills me with dread, particularly since they are still making great music. You have to leave age out of it; all the decent rockers are getting on now. The Stones are magnificent now and more power to them ; Mick gives hope to us all! 

So, with the greatest of respect for your view jreed, I am in wholehearted disagreement with you! I will gladly trot along to see U2 in their 60s, 70s, 80s. Johnny Cash did it with style, Leonard Cohen did it, Bowie did it, BB King... All the greats. And U2 are great. 

 

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I believe the end is slowly coming to an end but they will continue to write new music and perform for the next 5-10 years. After that, they may call it a day. 

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I felt like there was a better chance 10 years ago, rather than now.  If they were hanging them up, they wouldn't' have tried to get this last album and tour out in back-back-back years.  They also have a 12 year contract with Live Nation, that ends in 2020, and they took some upfront money, so I doubt they would want to pay it back, nor do I see them not honoring that contract.  I also look at my favorite band, U2, and my favorite sporting team, the Yankees, and I break down whatever I can, because, 1 - I pay for it, and I want to see what I get out of it, 2 - it gives me an idea of how they operate, and what I can expect in the future.  I won't get into details, but I've been pretty close to knowing, predicting a good lot of what they do and think .  How tours are set up, length, when the team may retol to get under the salary cap, etc.  You get the picture, and know that I'm not trying to blow smoke up your ass, and I'm on the artistic side, I'm not saying I'm predicting what they are working on, if I did that, then I'd be Nostradamus or something to that effect.

So besides the contract with Live Nation, I think their record deal expires after this, or the next album.  As in the past, when U2's contract was expiring, they put on a major tour, major publicity and tried to sell the most albums out of their trilogy.  They usually do them in 3's.  Here we have a free album with each ticket.  Say they do 2 million tickets, that's 2 million albums to start off with.  If it's like an average album sale, they could do 3-4m, if the album has mass appeal, could we be at 15 million.  At this point, their label will want to ride this wave, and give them another contract.  My feeling is that there is actually another album that is almost done, and they could release it next fall to complete the trilogy, as Edge has said, they scrapped the album after Bono had a scare.  This complete the trilogy, and another tour, with a nice long break.  

The band also has touring down to a science, and probably are the most comfortable band on the planet, when it comes down to being restful during a tour, not saying it's not taxing, they just probably have it better than almost every band.    If you haven't flown business class, on a long trip, you don't know the difference, it's like night and day.  Imagine if you have your own plane, and after shows that are within a few hours of NYC, or Dublin, they fly back home that night, and are in their beds.  No more going from hotel to hotel, and this is the biggest reason why bands retire.  It's not easy, especially  after you hit 40. 

While the band is rich, they have taken some hits recently.  Edge put out a ton of money for his Malibu development, and was denied zoning, that's a lot of money, it was estimated at around $25m, I don't know if he sold the lots or kept them, but just planning for all this stuff is expensive, I know, I'm a real estate developer in NYC.  Bono took some hits on his investments, and while he made a killing, he took some big losses.  I would say he's ahead of the game, but it's human nature to want to make that money back, just saying.  These guys also have a ton of kids, have a ton of homes, yacht's other ventures like Eden, etc, that has to be funded.  And the U2 organization, is vast.  They have a staff in the U.S and Ireland, people have been with them for a long time, and as they probably have a pension for them, the staff has also let them know, they don't want to retire, and why would you, having U2 as bosses must be great, even if they expect the best out of you  The average age of the band is 55, the cream of the crop of musicians' don't retire (Bruce, Madonna, The Stones, The Eagle's (retire, come back, retire come back - could be a ticket ploy)  They work less, and pull in the same money.  I'd say that the band can do what they normally do for another 15 years, and then slow down once they hit 70.  The average album takes 2.5 years. but these guys take lot's of breaks in between, it's not like you have to show up 5 days a week, when you make an album.  When things are flowing, they work in overdrive, and when they get stuck, they probably take breaks, vacations etc.  After 2.5 years, they do a month of plugging the album.  Then, they hunker down in Ireland for 3 months, i.e. spend time with family, etc.  March is 3 weeks of prepping for the show, they do about 2 months in the states, a month off, 2 months E.U, a month off,   They either go to South America or Asia for 4 weeks, and are off for the year, or they come back to the states for 2 months, 2 -4 months off for winter, and they do another 3-4 months and the tour is over.  As you can see, there are good breaks in between, and when you make $700 million for touring for about 2 years, with a good amount of breaks, it's not as hard as it would be if you were in a bus and staying in cheap hotels.  So, unless there are health risks, they can continue this,or cut it back.  Also, we've never seen a rock band. that have been on top for long, 40 years, been best friends for the entire time, made so much money, made so many relevant albums, (with some hiccups, according to them and critics ( not most of us U2 fans), sold out so many tours, been a media darling with no fallouts or distractions, make sure that their causes work and are relevant, seem to really enjoy what they are doing, and don't just go through the motions of being in a rock band, and had the best manager in the business, and made a smooth transition to Guy Oseary, and have really cared about their fans, before social media made you have to show that you cared and did things for your fans.  Take yourself out of the your love for the band, imagine if you were one of the 4 gents in this band, the biggest, most successful bands in the world, would you want retire, heck no, you'd want the next band to have an even bigger hill to climb to get where you are.  I just don't see greatness retiring anytime soon, if ever.

Well, that's my 2 cents,

Andreas

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  The Stones sound horrible live and U2 still sounds great.  Their last album is one of my favorites.  The IE tour is my favorite tour of theirs.  I've seen most of them.  This is just one opinion but I think they have a lot more music in them.  For the IE tour they camped in Chicago for five shows, with days off in between those shows.  I think, and hope, we will see more of this and less hitting as many cities as possible.  It was mentioned Bono spoke of his brush with mortality.  We've lost quite a few great musicians this past year.  It made me think of my mortality.  He's a rock star.  Maybe it's hitting him even more.  I don't think we can even begin to speculate their future.  I do hope they don't go the route of the Stones because that band is a joke.  The Stones opened Summerfest, in Milwaukee, a few years back.  Ticket prices were $500 or more.  They were paid five million dollars for one show.  Nobody is worth that.  I had friends who went and said they sounded awful.  U2 still sounds great.  As for REM...I like a lot of the music they put out after Bill Berry left the band.  I saw a clip of them live recently and they sounded good.

Edited by Manohlive
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It's a interesting, albeit really sad thought. Undeniable that they are significantly closer to the end than the start. No doubting that. But what a ride.... 

It is probably why I haven't entirely brought into this seemingly new and surprisingly vehement emergence of a backlash from within the hardcore faithful towards the band of late. Sure the ticket sale process could have been infinitely better (to say the least), perhaps the JT shows would have been better not wedged between these two records and tours and absolutely it would have been devastated not getting a ticket. 100% understandable and gut wrenching. But....... They are still here. There are still shows. They are still recording and they are still touring. The alternative is much tougher to face. It could have all ended long ago. I know that it is difficult to try and follow that line when you suffer the pain of missing out on a ticket, but it is worth a thought. 

I remember listening to 40 from that final show of Popmart back in 98. Back when you paid exorbitant amounts for a bootleg in a record store. It felt in honestly like it could have ended right then. A slow, almost mournful version of the tune. On the back of record that struggled in the US. And a tour that had its fair share of difficulties in cutting though its own ambition. A tour where they copped a lot of flacks in places. I loved Popmart though, but that song felt so sad at that time and I couldn't help wondering if the next move was the lads head off to the mansion in the south of France and buy a winery. So everything since then has been nothing but a bonus. And anything after Experience would continue that theme. Let alone the vast amount of material locked in the vault somewhere. 

Keep in mind I'm an Australian fan, so suffice to say I haven't even had a chance at a ticket to show here for a very long time. 

Right now I think us hardcore fans need to take a step back for a second and remember why we are actually even here in the first place. Throw on a record on, turn it up and get lost in it again. Let The Fly rattle the windows. Get drunk and belt out One. Get even drunker and croon With or Without You whilst kicking out an imaginary microphone stand Rattle and Hum style. Nothing is guaranteed, there is no entitlement - but there are a shit load of tunes to fall back on.    

Edited by inztantkarma
fixing an error
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Last tour (ex JT 30) on Songs of Innocence, the band were, to echo Manolive, in great form. There is such a rich vein of doom n gloom that surround those that no longer see U2 as 'relevant'. They remain very relevant as is evident in ticket sales etc etc - yeah, remember them - that's people still wanting to see them , buying tickets!

My favourite show was once such n such, but it was very definitely seeing them live indoors in Belfast (2015) - not because it was, for the first time in a very long time, close to home - but because they were very good live - and remained so this year as they toured JT.

Nobody goes on forever though, hard fact to take for us all if we dwell too long - but we're blessed that we have had these 4 guys for so long. That's special, and very endearing. You feel, or at least I do, that you've grown up with them even though I don't actually know them personally.

Let's just go along with whatever. Nothing lasts forever.

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