If you thought digging deep in your wallet for some pricey U2 tickets guaranteed admittance to a career-spanning, greatest hits-style show – well, it may not be in the cards. The Irish superstars have been hiding out in Vancouver’s GM Place, rehearsing and readying to embark on their upcoming tour, but a fan website managed to get ahold of one of the band’s practice setlists and it’s largely composed of new material.
Despite having more than two decades of musical goodness to draw from, the U2 rehearsal set heavily favoured their newer material. Of the 21 songs, seven came from the band’s latest, How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb and another four from their 2000 release, All That You Can’t Leave Behind. This left the classic material under-represented, with the following breakdown: one track from Boy, one from War, one (“One”) from Achtung Baby, two from The Unforgettable Fire, though there are a whopping five tracks from The Joshua Tree.
The band’s longtime manager, Paul McGuinness, quickly pointed out to the Toronto Sun that the setlist, although accurate, was only one of several being tried out in rehearsals. He said the band’s excitement about the new album meant it would take a focus in the tour, but that the exact balance between old and new material has yet to be decided on.
“They are determined not to become their own kind of tribute band,” he told the newspaper.
McGuinness added that Bono and company were happy to spend their pre-tour time in Canada, with little bother from the public. They’ll be moving on to Los Angeles’ Sports Arena, starting Thursday, for full dress rehearsals.