U2 unveiling suggests where we’re heading

Orange County Register by Mark Brown (1996-11-01)

If you still don’t think computers and the Internet are an integral part of the future of home entertainment — especially when it comes to rock music — you’re fooling yourself. Things are moving quicker out there than you can imagine.

If you were quick enough to move on the Internet this week, you got a taste of the new U2 album — at least a couple of snippets.

The band has been quick to embrace the new technology. As noted here a couple of weeks back, the band has put a digital camera into its Dublin recording studio to chronicle the making of its new album, due in February.

To make a convoluted story short, parts of two songs, “Discotheque” and “Dead Man, Dead” were available at one U2 fan’s Web site for a short time this week, giving fans who were in-the-know a quick listen to the album.

It didn’t take long for word to get back to the U2 camp. By mid-week a large disclaimer on the page said that the song samples were no longer available.

It’s not the first time that U2 has had this problem; rough rehearsals for “Achtung Baby” slipped out of the studio before that album was even done. But to be able to log on to a computer in Los Angeles, Tokyo or London and pull up the songs that U2 is currently working on in their studio in Dublin — we’ve turned some sort of corner here in the dissemination of music.

You can go to the site and at least still get a description of the songs at http://w3.datanet.hu/~karpati/u2.htm, as well as official information confirming a U2 stadium tour for next year. And watch for those fans who already downloaded the songs to post them in newsgroups.

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