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Bono: ‘These songs don’t belong to us anymore. They belong to the people who went through stuff when they heard them first.’ Photograph:  Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Bono: ‘These songs don’t belong to us anymore. They belong to the people who went through stuff when they heard them first.’ Photograph: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

“How do we keep getting away with it?” Bono is wondering at the end of the first US show of the Joshua Tree 30 tour last Sunday night in Seattle. For a band who have always been disdainful of nostalgia, they’ve just got away with making a tour of songs originally released three decades ago the biggest selling global music tour of 2017.

Bono is acutely aware of the irony: “If you look back to what we were singing in 1987 – “Desert Sky, Dream beneath a desert sky, The rivers run but soon run dry, We need new dreams tonight” – it’s just the strangest thing to me, because those Joshua Tree songs now sound like they were written for this very moment,” he says.

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