U2 pops in for world exclusive with Fanning


"ALL is quiet on New Year's Day" goes the old U2 hit, but barely one week into 1997 the post-holiday silence has been broken by the rattle and hum of U2's latest single, Discotheque.

It made its world exclusive debut on Dave Fanning's 2FM radio show last night at 8.30 p.m. The single, the first track to be culled from U2's forthcoming album (entitled Pop) was delivered personally to the Radio Centre in Montrose on Tuesday night by the band's manager Paul McGuinness, who told Fanning: "I'm very superstitious. You have to be the first to play it."

BBC Radio 1 will give the song its UK airing this morning, and the single goes on general release on February 10th.

The group's record company, Island Records, estimates the new album could sell 10 million copies, netting U2 about £30 million. It will also be the prelude to U2's 1997 tour, details of which will be announced in March.

Fanning described the song as "brilliant", adding: "I'm delighted to see them back."

The metallic beat of Larry Mullins's drums and the piledriving bass of Adam Clayton provide the battleground for a mighty tussle between the Edge's guitar and a variety of crazy electronic sounds. In among the wired-up sounds you can hear the disjointed voice of Bono singing lyrics such as:

You can reach but you can't grab it,

You can hold it, control it


But you can't bag it...

You know you're chewing bubblegum,

You know what it is but you still want some,

You just can't get enough of that lovey-dovey stuff

Discotheque is the first single from U2 since 1995's Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me, which featured on the soundtrack for the movie Batman Forever. In the interim, the band collaborated with their producer Brian Eno under the name Passengers, releasing an album of experimental sound-track music and a hit single, Miss Sarajevo, which featured vocals by Bono and Luciano Pavarotti.

The new album was originally scheduled for release last November in time for the Christmas market, but delays in completing the album's 12 tracks meant the release date was put back until March.