U2 Premiere New Song ‘The Blackout’ (Listen)

The Edge, Adam Clayton and Bono
Papeo/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

After releasing a teaser on their Facebook page Tuesday and sending cryptic letters to random fans, U2 dropped a new song, “The Blackout,” on its Facebook page Wednesday at noon ET — although it is apparently not the real single. That is “You’re the Best Thing About Me,” which will be unveiled on Sept. 6 along with news about the group’s long awaited “Songs of Experience” album, the sequel to its 2014 release “Songs of Innocence.”

“‘The Blackout,’ just for you. From upcoming album ‘Songs of Experience,'” the post reads. “Tune in August 30th. First single, ‘You’re The Best Thing About Me’ coming Sept. 6th, along with all the album news. #U2TheBlackout#U2SongsofExperience. In the darkness where we learn to see.'”

The song, apparently recorded live, is less-polished and rowdier than the band’s recent material, although it has a poppy chorus that may bear the fingerprints of OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder, with whom the band has collaborated recently.

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The band completed the album last year but felt, in the wake of Donald Trump’s election, it did not suit the changed political and social climate.

“Once the election had happened we didn’t want to put out a record without having some time to evaluate what was going on and what was behind the outcome,” bassist Adam Clayton told Variety in June. “And certainly that wave of change seemed to be moving through Europe as well, so we did say ‘Let’s reexamine where we are,’ and we did reexamine and I think it’s been better for the record and it’s been better for the songwriting and it’s much more on-message of what U2 does and what U2 does well. [“Songs of Experience”] has been ready to go for awhile, because it didn’t require a lot of surgery, so to speak — it was a little bit of cosmetic surgery.”

The band is currently wrapping its “Joshua Tree” 30th anniversary tour and are expected to tour behind the new album next year.

Listen to the song below:

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  1. Patrick says:

    Looks like the Fly is back. Hopefully that means Songs of Experience will revisit 90s U2 in the way that Songs of Innocence revisited 80s U2.

  2. The message of this song is apparently that if your side loses in a fair election, democracy has died. I’m not sure that’s how democracy actually works. I love U2 and there’s some good to this song, but that’s a truly inane idea.

  3. YolkyPalky says:

    Mediocre retread of previous hooks and licks. Hope the new album has truly new material.

  4. Clay says:

    LOVE IT!!

  5. JWG says:

    Sounds fresh without being forced, retains enough rock to balance out the pop appeal. U2 can still manage to sound like U2 while deploying a new take on where they sit in the modern musical landscape. This group may have the most elastic, durable ‘sound’ of any band attempting to outlive their window by bridging trends.

    Musically, its refreshing to hear the band at full ‘noise’ where all the pieces shine, starting with Adam on bass. There are notes of the 90s rough-edgedness to go along with a Killer-esque modernity, and a guitar sound reminiscent of U2’s most unabashed band-fans, Keane’s ‘Is it Any Wonder’. Clever that Keane, who bridged the gap between U2 and Coldplay, gets a nod here, intentional or not: It plays on the whole ‘U2 sounding like Coldplay sounding like Keane sounding like U2’ trope, bringing it full circle.

    The piece of chocolate that goes along with a love letter to their core fans, Blackout has the luxury of being a non-single, allowed to breathe on it’s own and land where it may. They’ve learned that less is more by dropping it without bombast or build up, and without any pressure of being a single. It also serves as a buffer for the upcoming ‘..Best Thing..’.

  6. Michelle says:

    This is so good! Can’t wait to hear it live!

  7. Eduardo says:

    Good song ir reminds me from Vértigo a little

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