U2 added eight more dates for their upcoming Las Vegas gigs in December, so the excitement is palpable. While we wait for the band to take the stage, their long-time friend and producer, Steve Lillywhite, revealed some details about the band’s sound in an interview with Guitar Player. According to Bono, the Edge once instructed him to “crank up the Mick Jones vibe” in his guitar playing.
Looking back on the previous days, the producer recalled: “I saw them on the ‘October’ tour, and the songs seemed to be getting very brash and almost hard rock – not quite heavy metal, but definitely harsh.” I wasn’t sure if that was the band’s strongest suit. It had to be a throwback to the band’s punk rock roots. It needed to be more Clash-esque.
‘Stop sounding like The Edge,’ says Bono to the guitarist. ‘You sound exactly like Mick Jones!’ [Laughs] Edge was always going to sound like Edge, but if Bono hadn’t pushed him, he might have been ‘dreamy Edge,’ rather than ‘rocky Edge.'” But U2 didn’t want to be a carbon copy of the Clash. The Edge was completely committed to channeling the energy of previous punk bands such as Television:
“They were a huge influence on us, especially on the first album, ‘Marquee Moon,’ because of their uniqueness and creativity.” We’d never heard the guitar performed quite like that before. They were creating instruments that, to our ears, had a distinct personality and sounded absolutely unique. That was a significant game for us.” This year, U2 released a new album, ‘Songs Of Surrender,’ in which they reinterpreted 40 of their best hits for the present world. Meanwhile, there’s another LP on the road, ‘Songs Of Ascent,’ as well as a guitar-based album that they’ve been teasing us with.