U2 Presents Surprise New Album, Free on Itunes

U2 Free Album NewsCourtesy of iTunes

Five seconds – that’s the length of the warning U2 gave us before they released their new album. Songs of Innocence came out today just as U2 got onstage at Apple’s product-launch press conference a few hours ago. Exclusively on Itunes, their first album in five years is available – for free – to anyone with an account.

“We wanted to make a very personal album,” Bono told Rolling Stone yesterday. “The whole album is first journeys — first journeys geographically, spiritually, sexually. And that’s hard. But we went there.” 

The band listened to the music they loved to fuel the project, such as David Bowie and Joy Division. The leading track is a tribute to one of Bono’s inspirations: “The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone).” Bono recalled, “I found my voice through Joey Ramone because I wasn’t the obvious punk-rock singer, or even rock singer. I sang like a girl — which I’m into now, but when I was 17 or 18, I wasn’t sure. And I heard Joey Ramone, who sang like a girl, and that was my way in.” 

The free (yes, completely free) download comes with a digital booklet and eleven tracks. From a tribute to Bono’s mom, to a Clash-inspired “This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now,” to joyful Beach-Boy-esque “California (There Is No End To Love)” to a track named after the street where Bono grew up “Cedarwood Road,” it’s a release that’s shaking the music world.

The infamous Irish rock band from Ireland has come out with fifteen albums since 1980. Their previous projects are Boy (1980),October (1982), War (1983), Under a Blood Red Sky (1983), The Unforgettable Fire (1984), Wide Awake in America (Mini LP) (1985), The Joshua Tree (1987), Rattle and Hum (1988), Achtung Baby (1991), Zooropa (1993), Pop (1997), All That You Can’t Leave Behind (2000), How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb (2004), and No Line on the Horizon (2009).

Check out the full list of tracks from Songs of Innocence below:
1. The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)
2. Every Breaking Wave
3. California (There is No End to Love)
4. Song for Someone
5. Iris (Hold Me Close)
6. Volcano
7. Raised By Wolves
8. Cedarwood Road
9. Sleep Like a Baby Tonight
10. This is Where You Can Reach Me Now
11. The Troubles