U2 are planning to release a new studio album in early 2011, according to the band’s manager Paul McGuinness.
The Irish supergroup hope to have the album on the shelves in time to coincide with their re-scheduled North American tour, which is due to commence in May next year. The album, reported to be entitled ‘Songs Of Ascent‘, is expected to feature a selection of songs aired on U2’s recent European tour. “I would expect a new U2 album sooner than anybody thinks,” said McGuinness in an interview with the Irish Times. “I would guess early 2011 before the next leg of the American tour, which starts in May.”
Later, McGuinness also defended the chart performance of the band’s previous record ‘No Line On The Horizon‘, released in February 2009, which is widely seen as a commercial and critical disappointment. McGuinness claimed the album performed ‘remarkably well’, after selling close to five million copies, despite the general fall in sales across the board, a trend which McGuinness blamed on illegal downloading.
U2’s frontman Bono recently claimed the band had three albums worth of material ready to go, which included tracks intended for the Spiderman musical. “We have ‘Songs of Ascent‘, which is the meditative work that was meant to complement ‘No Line On the Horizon‘,” Bono told Rolling Stone. “We’ve got a rock album. We also have a club-sounding album. And then we have the Spider-Man stuff.”
U2 will begin their North American tour in Denver, Colorado, on May 21st 2011.