I think they are over-thinking and being too cautious. They had some very good/great new songs (North Star, Every Breaking Wave, Return of the Stingray Guitar, Invisible, updated version of Mercy, etc). They could easily make an album that they could tour with. In some ways seeing them live in the near future is more important to me than an over-produced new album.
I like the new songs, but if I had to provide feedback to U2 I would tell them to have Edge and the band have a stronger influence and presence on more of the songs (like Boy/October/War). The news songs sound like pure Bon