On the eve of their Saturday Night Live performance, U2 released its fourteenth album “Songs of Experience”, which Bono has described as a collection of letters to his wife and children.
The project includes the singles “The Blackout” and “You're the Best Thing About Me”, plus two collaborations with Kendrick Lamar, “Get Out of Your Own Way” and “American Soul”.
Earlier, the band partnered with Amazon Music for a new online radio broadcast leading up to the album release on Friday.
U2's first album in three years, “Songs of Experience,” sees Bono and co. returning to the band's founding faith in rock as a means of inspiration. US President Donald Trump's shadow hovers over much of the album which came out after a delay of a year, which U2 said it needed to fine-tune its message after the right-wing tycoon's shock election victory, according to AFP.
“Songs of Experience” is a companion of sorts to the group's last album, 2014's “Songs of Innocence”, the juxtaposed concepts in the titles an allusion to a poetry collection of William Blake. It maintains the confessional approach of the previous album, with Bono - when not taking up the state of the world - reminiscing about his life's 57 years from his gratitude for support early in his career to his enduring love for his wife.
U2 also steered clear of the most memorable feature of “Songs of Innocence”, its much maligned format as a free release on iTunes. Apple sent out “Songs of Innocence” to iTunes' half-billion users as part of a promotion, delighting some fans but triggering a flurry of complaints that the band was presumptuous in believing the whole world wanted to listen.