Spanning 19 cities across Europe and North America, U2’s new 360-degree tour will avoid the massive stadiums and instead focus on more intimate indoor arenas.
The tour, officially known as the iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE tour, follows on from the release of their ‘Songs of Innocence’ album. It will be the first time in a decade that the band play indoor arenas.
Perhaps in nod to the “album ambush,” in which half a billion iTunes users got copies of the ‘Songs of Innocence’ album for free, the tour’s name is spelt with the first letter of each word in lowercase.
As a result of massive, what U2 have characterised as “overwhelming”, fan demand – which included some 118,000 fans who queued up online to buy tickets for the New York shows – they have confirmed two new dates each for Paris, Berlin, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Montreal, Boston, and New York. Tickets for the new U2 dates went on sale Monday, December 15 and are available here.
The tour previously had four different dates booked at New York’s Madison Square Garden and London’s O2. Otherwise, the tour will feature a pair of nights in each of the 19 cities it’s visiting, with the goal of providing a different feeling from one night to the next.
According to Bono, the band will “have some fun” experimenting with the ideas of experience and innocence, and more details will be revealed.
Conspicuously missing from the tour so far are Irish dates, but a band spokesperson has confirmed Bono and company have planned additional shows for Dublin next year.
The two-night format of the tour has been hinted at for some time, starting with interviews back in November where guitarist ‘the Edge’ suggested the band would try to avoid the monumental style of their previous record-setting 360-degree tour. He told Rolling Stone he thought the band would try to start small, as they certainly wouldn’t be able to top the last tour.
Bono announced the concept of indoor gigs in an interview on Absolute Radio, saying they were planning to play venues like the O2 rather than huge outdoor stadiums, but “we’ll see where it takes us.” After all, in his words, every time they go on tour these days it’s as if an entire city follows them.
The band is also currently streaming a series of graffiti-oriented films that represent a take-off from their ‘Songs of Innocence’ album. The videos reference Northern Ireland’s political murals and created by 11 different world-famous “urban artists,” together the project is known as ‘Films of Innocence’.
The artists were asked to interpret each of the 11 songs on the new U2 album in film format. The result is a series of partly live-action and partly animated films which will also be available for purchase on Amazon and iTunes after the 24 hour streaming première has ended.
Connor Harrington’s interpretation of the ‘Crystal Ballroom’ bonus track on ‘Songs of Innocence’ is available to those fans who subscribe on U2.com
This post is sponsored by Michael Ray