'Looks Like November'

14 Mar 2006
'We are coming back...'

Following the news that the final dates of Vertigo '06 were being postponed, Bono spoke to ABC TV in Australia - and revealed that the band would be back in Australia to play their shows in November. We thought you might like to read more of his conversation with presenter Andrew Denton of Enough Rope. Here are some edited highlights.

Presenter: Great to have you here. Now of course last week you had to announce the postponement of the Vertigo Tour, why was that?
Bono: Well, I can't really get into the details why a family member was very ill, there was a lot of distress and angst and (the) good news is I can announce tonight we are coming back, looks like November, and that's a great relief to me. I didn't want to leave Australia without having that hammered down but I'm just about that much away from being able to give you the dates, so maybe even tomorrow I'll be able to do that.

Presenter: Fantastic! It's a big thing to postpone a tour like this isn't it?
Bono: You know it's only happened once before and oddly enough it was in Sydney in Australia in the late '80s, we had to postpone three dates. It makes you feel... well, it's against everything... it's really hard to describe how awful it feels and we've a very close relationship with our fans - it's quite a thing, the U2 thing - and I'm amazed actually that people have been so kind to us, and on the websites, people... just care if everything going to be okay. And for those who have to travel and change travel arrangements we're really, really deeply sorry, although the airlines have been really cool about about all of this and so it looks good.

Presenter: From your point of view, this is the end of an almost year-long world tour and now you're going to have to crank it up again in November hopefully.
Bono: It'll be better.

Presenter: Be better?
Bono: Oh yeah, 'cause it will be the only time we get a chance to play these songs for a long time. It will be extraordinary and the member of the band whose life has been turned upside down with his recent news, he will be on fire, as opposed to with a cloud hanging over him. So they'll be amazing shows.

Presenter: On stage you've described it sometimes as if the sky splits open and God pours out... on a good night.
Bono: On a good night. On a good night playing outdoors is an amazing thing if it goes off. Where else are you going to get 70,000 people to agree on anything. If it's shite - and it can be - I don't think there's a worse place to be in the world (than) in the back of a rock gig (when) you know you can't see the band. We have tried, with the staging of our shows, to always make it (that) wherever you are in the house there's something special going on and we've broken some ground there - in the early '90s with the B-stage which you see now the Rolling Stones are using, and this kind of multi-media stuff that we did on Zoo TV and creating club gigs in the middle of the staging which we do now on the Vertigo Tour.

Presenter: When Bruce Springsteen inducted you into the Hall of Fame last year, he marvelled at the fact that the band had been together 25 years and that, what he called a ticking time bomb that's at the centre of every band, that you'd harnessed it, that it hadn't exploded. When the four of you are in a room together trying to make the next thing happen, what stops the bomb going off?
Bono: We have this huge desire amongst us, the four of us, to not be crap. I think that's really it, because we have this amazing life, you know we really have got an incredible life, and we feel it's like a deal with those in our audience. They don't mind us you know, being able to take a break whenever we want, renting some fancy house on the harbour at Sydney, have all of that... have a great life, just don't be crap. That's kind of the deal, so we always think when we go in to make an album, 'Oh is this going to be the one where we're crap?' In U2 there's two crap albums and you're out. We haven't done that yet.

Presenter: You've been a band (for) 25 years, you've been through all the rites of passage together, haven't you - marriages, births of children, deaths of parents - without wishing to go into exactly what's happening now, one of the band members is in pain.
Bono: Right.

Presenter: How are you there to help each other?
Bono: Our music does come out of community, very tight community and so if one of us is going through it we're all going through it. We've all been through different ups and downs, and you've got to give yourself freedom within a band to get out of each other's way as well as to get in somebody's face at the right time... sometimes you have to know when not to. This is one of those moments.

Catch a video clip of the interview here.

Read the entire transcript of the interview here.


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