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Guitarist - November 2000

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Guitarist Magazine, 11.2000

The Edge, from U2 to U

 

Mythical guitarist at 39 years, The Edge sold more than 70 million albums with U2.Et the new album of the group, " ALL THAT YOU CAN'T LEAVE BEHIND, should still start again the machine. But like Peter Buck, his, alter ego at REM, Dave Evans (his true name) is rather a anti-musician who contributed to redefine the role of the guitar in rock' roll, by tracing improbable milked union between the wild riffs of its heroes and the surrounding and obsessing airs of the new eleectronic musics.

In 1996, we gave to him first " Rory Gallagher Rock Musician Award ", this self-portrait helps to include/understand why.

Dave " The Edge " Evans was born in Barking in the suburbs is of London, August 8, 1961. One year later, his family left to settle in Dublin.  Calm and reserved as a child, he follows a normal schooling and intends himself for a career of doctor. With the re-entry 1976, He locates a small advertisement of Larry Mullen, future drummer of U2: " Seek musicians to assemble a group ". Dave answers and goes to Larry with his brother (Dik Evans) and a friend, Adam Clayton. In a corner of the part another young man, not very large but loquacious nicknamed: " Bono "

The five discuss music, are discovered common influences and decide to form FEEDBACK, an embryonic version of U2: " Coming from punk, one estimated, like Velvet Underground or NewYork Dolls before us, that it p' was not really necessary to know to play ". Because Dave has the face particularly
end and sharp-edged, the others baptize it The Edge. At the end of his schooling, this pupil steady in spite of his incipient musical vocation, explains to his parents that it will be devoted to the music lasting one year but promises all to drop if nothing occurs.

Punk roots

In 1978, FEEDBACK become THE HYPE. Jackie Heyden of CBS Records locates the group become quartet (the brother of The Edge left) and suggests recording a first demonstration. Paul McGuinness, a businessman, proposes with the group which has just changed again name to manage it:

This association lasts still today, a record in the history of the rock'n'roll. Two years and a pair of singles later, Bono, Larry and The Edge join Shalom, a group of Christians very practise. But it proves soon that the search of spirituality of certain members of the group is not shared by the others: Larry and Bono, estimating that the life style rock' roll is not incompatible with the control induced by the church, leave Shalom. The Edge, after much soul searching, follows suit.

It is with War, its third album in 1983, that U2 explodes truly. Containing the tunes " Sunday, Bloody Sunday " and " New Year's Day ", it will transform this punk-proto group into a great live act.  " We are of these musicians who estimate that a group must be in correlation with its public and to play our songs live before recording them was always the best test to judge their effectiveness ".

Free guitarist in his head and his hands, follower of the air arpeggios drowned in the echo which will become its very identifiable trademark in " Bullet The Blue Sky " or " One ", The Edge contributes to work his U2: " The echo reassured us in studio in the sense that it outside gave us the illusion to be, to play live. War joins again with our punk roots, the experiments do not harm energy.

For the first time, I worked in my corner and proposed with the group of the riffs and the continuations of agreements which we developed at the time of the balances ".

The same year, The Edge marries Aislinn O' Sullivan, his first wife who will give him three children. (Holly, Arrin and Blue Angel)  The couple divorces in 1996 and The Edge shares a relationship with Morleigh Steinberg, choreographer of the Zoo TV Tower and mother of its two other children. (Sian and Levi)

Machine of war

In 1984, The Unforgettable Fire marks the beginning long and prolific collaboration with Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois: " I always had the intuition that Eno could help us. It was not very packed with the idea to produce us but it is listening to our demonstrations in Dublin which it had to realize that one was more ambitious than our preceding discs let it believe. Eno wants to really contribute to the physical arrangement of manner, it is not limited to the suggestions. It plays of the keyboards with the group, it is almost an additional musician. On certain titles like " The Unforgettable Fire " precisely, its influence is very discrete, but on others, " Promenade " or " Presley Elvis In America ", his contribution is major.

Us to give between its hands made us progress in a considerable way ", by the success of the album, U2 connects the world rounds, occurs in Live Aid in 1985, attesting of its interest for the great causes: " During " Bad ", Bono is descends into the crowd dancing with an audience member making a connection with the public. 

"That seemed to us to last of the hours. I was depressed when I left scene, but afterwards, I appreciated to re-examine these images. One can always sign petitions, to take part in meetings, I believe that what passes by the music is much more significant and people respect that. "

The following year, U2 turns for Amnesty International then returns again in studio to record what many regards as its masterpiece: The Joshua Tree. This album still marks a stage in the evolution of the play of guitar of The Edge: " In the pure plan guitaristic, The Unforgettable Fire had been very liberator bus Brian had let me foresee that all was permis.Cette time, we went even further with these famous treatments of which it has the secrecy, this work on the tapes and via the synthetizers ". A round follows from which will be extracted a film (Rattle & Hum), a disc (raised by the presence of BB King and partly recorded in legendary Sun studio of Memphis) and a book of the photographer Anton Corbijn, evidence that U2 became an enormous machine of war.

Naturally, some see in this planetary success the beginning of an artistic and moral decline: " I include/understand the point of view of some of our detractors. On the other hand, the honesty which perspires in each plan of Rattle & Hum could not be called in question. The sincerity of U2 is truly its strong point. "

Like Italian

At the beginning of the Nineties, U2 starts a more industrial phase and bruitist and records Achtung Baby with the Hansa studios, famous to have inspired in David Bowie his European trilogy, Low/Heroes/Lodger. English Fans of the star, Bono and they his impregnate environment of the city and make appear their most experimental album.

The Edge continues dstructurer its play of guitar and to use its instrument in a revolutionary way. In Zooropa and Pop, the two other discs published by the group which never hesitated to be called in question during the Nineties, The Edge will adapt its play to musical environments of the moment, techno, dance, ambient: " When one keeps too a long time the head in the handlebar, one loses sometimes the contact with the public. There was a little the feeling to be perceived like caricatures. Some listened to us with a particularly cynical ear and it was with us to suggest another way of approaching our music.


Artists like Bob Dylan or Lou Reed showed us that it was not always necessary to tackle the subjects of face for making well pass the ideas. In Ireland people direct, are impassioned like Italians. Circumspection is not our fort. Bono was released a little *** TRANSLATION ENDS HERE *** avec ses personnages tels que celui de "The Fly " avec les grosses lunettes. On est parfois plus efficace lorsqu'on ne s'escrime pas l' tre tout prix : un peu de second degr ne pouvait pas nous nuire.

C'est galement la premi re fois, durant le Zoo TV Tour que l'on tournait avec un concept ce qui nous permettait d'exp rimenter sur sc ne toutes les nouvelles technologies. La situation globale nous amenait nous poser des tas de questions du style : Internet arrive, l'information est bombard e dans nos cerveaux un rythme dingue, mais qu'advient-il de l' tre humain ? "

Miles Davis et David Bowie

En 2000, le nouvel album de U2, All That You Can't Leave Behind, marque le retour un pop plus indie que clinquante. Constitu de chansons qu'aucun arrangement superflu ne vient travestir, il est vraisemblablement l'album du groupe le plus authentique depuis ses d buts : "On n'a pas voulu que la production dissimule notre r elle identit ou la qualit des titres. Pour l'instant, la r action des gens est des plus enthousiastes. En tant que guitariste, je n'ai jamais autant utilis de sons clairs que sur ce disque ".

Vif, malin, g n reux, conscient que l'avenir du rock appartient ceux qui en usent sans en abuser, The Edge est un exemple. Lui qui n'a jamais jou note pour note les solos de ces h ros et n'a jamais piqu de plan personne, sait que c'est dans la personnalit , l'identit de chaque musicien que r side son vrai talent : "La pop music entre dans une nouvelle re. Les gens veulent des bonnes chansons, des m lodies m morisables.

Pour ce disque, on a r fl chi ce que l'on avait d'unique et nous avons pris conscience que le fait d' tre un groupe, toujours bien vivant en l'an 2000, tait notre force. On est reconnaissable. Le rock n'est pas toujours synonyme de qualit et la pop n'est certainement pas un art mineur parce qu'avoir une perception na ve de la musique n'a rien de p joratif.

Qu'on coute Miles Davis, David Bowie ou qui que ce soit d'autre, la s duction doit tre imm diate. c'est quelque chose que nous avons toujours recherch dans notre travail. Il y a cette fra cheur dans le *** TRANSLATION ENDS HERE *** avec ses personnages tels que celui de "The Fly " avec les grosses lunettes. On est parfois plus efficace lorsqu'on ne s'escrime pas l' tre tout prix : un peu de second degr ne pouvait pas nous nuire.

C'est galement la premi re fois, durant le Zoo TV Tour que l'on tournait avec un concept ce qui nous permettait d'exp rimenter sur sc ne toutes les nouvelles technologies. La situation globale nous amenait nous poser des tas de questions du style : Internet arrive, l'information est bombard e dans nos cerveaux un rythme dingue, mais qu'advient-il de l' tre humain ? "

Miles Davis et David Bowie

En 2000, le nouvel album de U2, All That You Can't Leave Behind, marque le retour un pop plus indie que clinquante. Constitu de chansons qu'aucun arrangement superflu ne vient travestir, il est vraisemblablement l'album du groupe le plus authentique depuis ses d buts : "On n'a pas voulu que la production dissimule notre r elle identit ou la qualit des titres. Pour l'instant, la r action des gens est des plus enthousiastes. En tant que guitariste, je n'ai jamais autant utilis de sons clairs que sur ce disque ".

Vif, malin, g n reux, conscient que l'avenir du rock appartient ceux qui en usent sans en abuser, The Edge est un exemple. Lui qui n'a jamais jou note pour note les solos de ces h ros et n'a jamais piqu de plan personne, sait que c'est dans la personnalit , l'identit de chaque musicien que r side son vrai talent : "La pop music entre dans une nouvelle re. Les gens veulent des bonnes chansons, des m lodies m morisables.

Pour ce disque, on a r fl chi ce que l'on avait d'unique et nous avons pris conscience que le fait d' tre un groupe, toujours bien vivant en l'an 2000, tait notre force. On est reconnaissable. Le rock n'est pas toujours synonyme de qualit et la pop n'est certainement pas un art mineur parce qu'avoir une perception na ve de la musique n'a rien de p joratif.

Qu'on coute Miles Davis, David Bowie ou qui que ce soit d'autre, la s duction doit tre imm diate. c'est quelque chose que nous avons toujours recherch dans notre travail. Il y a cette fra cheur dans le
nouvel album. "


nouvel album. "

the complete material used by The Edge

It is insane what one can accumulate like matos with the wire of a score of years of professional career! But The Edge is not only one warned collector, since it uses practically all the parts of equipment which constitutes its arsenal in perpetual evolution.
by Olivier Galan


The matos of The Edge is provided and its scenic set-up one of most complicated which is. In round, The Edge does not take along less than 32 guitars and it requires of sound guitar-tech Dallas School that it changes the cords them each evening, in order to have always absolutely new cords (DR. Strings Nickel Roundwound 0.11/0.54), even on those of which he will not be useful himself during the show. The Edge uses mdiators Herdim, manufactured in Germany, and is useful sometimes of E-bow to obtain sounds planing with the infinite sustain. All its guitars are tuned in E flat, that is to say a half your below the standard tuning.

Its principal guitars are
- Rickenbacker 330-12 of 67, used on " Even Better Than The Real Thing " and " Angel Of Harlem ".
- Rickenbacker Susanna Hoffs used at the time of the concert in Las Vegas during the PopMart round.
- Gibson the Paul Custom white of 72 equipped with DiMarzio microphones, used as of Pride, but also on the albums Achtung Baby and Zooropa (one hears it on " Desire "), but also on all the last rounds of U2. Probably, the electronics of the guitar was modified in order to be able splitter the microphones humbucker and to obtain sounds of single-coils. The handle was already broken then repaired.
- Gibson the Paul Gold Signal of 68
- Gibson the Paul Gold Signal Reissue of 76 used on scene for " C You Feel Loved " and " Bullet The Blue Sky " during the PopMart batch.
- Gibson the Standard Paul " Discotheque ", which one sees on the video of the same title, with his completion " swell with facets ", it is the Paul heaviest never manufactured.
- Gibson the Standard Paul brown sunburst, seen on the video of " I Will Follow ".
- Gibson Es-295 used on the video of " Desire ".
- Gibson Es-330 used in concert for " One " and " Holy Joe ".
- Gibson Byrdland used on the video of " When Coils Comes To Town ".
- Gibson SG double-handle
- Gibson To explore of 76 used in concert as of the beginnings of the group until 89, then come out from its case at the time of the round Zoo TV for " Ultra Purple ". The handle was already broken then repaired on several occasions.
- Fernandes equipped with Sustainer used on " With gold whithout you " during the PopMart round.
- Gretsch White Falcon, used it video of Rattle And Hum and many times in concert on Gretsch Silver Jet, used in particular at the time of the concert of Belfast with Ash
- Gretsch green, models not identified pertaining to Bono, used in concert on " Miss Sarajevo ".
- two Gretsch Country Gentleman di 65 and 67 which was used for the meetings of the Pop album, in particular on " Discothque " and, with a capodastre with the second box, on " Last Night One Earlh " and " Please ".
- National Dobro with carding brushes steel.
- one To found Siratocaster ` 79, n 916792, used on the album The Joshua Tree and during the turning of Rattle And Hum, autographe by Bono estimated at 12000 $.
- Fender Siratocaster Eric Clapton Signature of 89, black, used in concert on " The Fly ".
- Fender Stratocaster ` 64 sunburst
- Fender Stratocaster black, with micro EMG and a vibrato Floyd Pink.
- Fender Stratocaster of 80, black used into live on " Helter Skelter ".
- Fender Stratocaster ` 72, pre-CBS black with a white pickguard, used in the Eighties on " Sunday Bloody Sunday " and always in service.
- Fender Stratocaster, pre-CBS, red with a white pickguard, used in concert in Sydney into 89.
- Fender Stratocaster, pre-CBS, yellow with a black pickguard, seen in concert in Sydney into 89.
- Fender Lead II, black, in the hands of Bono at the time of the round The Unforgettable Fire.
- Fender Telecaster ` 70, blonde with a white pickguard, used since the meetings of The Unforgeitable Fire.
- acoustic Taylor.
- Takamine Santa Fe
- Washburn EA20, used for Ies left acoustic the round The Unforgettable Fire.


For the amplifiers,

The Edge adores Vox and has on scene of a half-dozen ac-30, all vintage. Its preferred is Vox ac-30 of 1968 which took part in all the first tubes of U2, took fire several times, was repaired on several occasions but figure always in the heart of the arsenal of The Edge. Its other Vow ac-30 go back respectively to 59,62,65,66,67. The Edge also has the first Reissue model of Vox ac-30 built in 1993 in the Marshall factories.

For more saturated sounds, it rests on a pair of combos Randall G80-112c, which were offered to him by Joe Elliot, the singer of Def Leppard. At the beginning, The Edge made use of it for clear sounds as on " Last Night One Earth " before using the sounds saturated on " Zoo Station " for example.
The Edge also had recourse to a Roland Jazz Jc-120 Chorus on the War round and the album The Unforgettable Fire, as well as Fender Super 4X10 on which also Bono connected.


For the recordings of Rattle & Hum, Fender Pro Reverb was put at contribution, in particular on " Angel Of Harlem ". Lastly, a Mesa/Boogie head and Marshall amplifiers were used for multiple occasions, on scene or for overdubs in studio and one a stack Orange 120 Reissue sees on the video of " Discotheque ".


Dimensioned effects,

it is straightforwardly the orgy! The Edge has two enormous flight-boxes containing all its racks, of which it is useful as well on scene in studio. The unit constantly is modified and renewed, but The Edge likes all to preserve to use with each piece the effects which were used for the recording.


- Juice Goose Power Rack 200 Professional, which is used to provide a food while running filtered and stabilized for all the other purposes, to avoid the background noises.
- Korg Sdd-3000, whose The Edge likes made cordial. It uses three in concert of them.
- Yamaha SPX-90, used on " In God' S Country ".
- a Roland Sde-3000
- Eventide H-3000, used for the sound of cords on " Coils Is Blindness " and " Running To Stand Still ".
- Rocktron Replifex, in particular on the refrain of " Staring At The Sun ".
- DigiTech Gsp-2101 used in round on " Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me ".
- DigiTech Gsp-2112 used on the Popmart round for the pieces " New Year' S Day " and " I Will Follow ".
- Korg A3 whose flanger is used on " Numb " and the phaser on " Mysterious Ways ".
- Rocktron PachMate
- Audio Custom Electronics Dual Stereo Line Mixer
- Audio Custom Electronics Envelope Filter used during the meetings of Zooropa.
- an ART SGX 2000, used on the round Zoo-TV.
- Rocktron Pro GAP v2.0
- Yamaha Gep-50
- DigiTech Dhp-33
- Ibanez DM1000
- Ibanez UE400
- a t.c. electronic 2290 DIGITAL Delay, used from now on for all the functions of echo-delay.
- an AMS DIGITAL Delay, Rolls of the digital times.
- Sony Wireless UHR WRR37
- a Roland Vh-8


Pedals of effect:

- Whammy DigiTech Wh-1, one of the preferred pedals of The Edge, which has several specimens of them. Manifestly used on " Even Better Than The Real Thing ", " Mysterious Ways ", " Mofo " and " Bad ".
- Dunlop Fuzz Face, used on " Mofo " at the time of the Popmart round.
- Sd-1 Boss, the overdrive of the first albums Servant boy and War.
- Od-1 Boss
- Od-2 Boss, always used with the Turbo one One, in particular on " End Of The World ".
- Boss Cs-2, compressor used during the round Zoo-TV.
- Boss Ge-7, equalizing graphic used jointly with various the distos.
- Boss F-1, booster rocket vintage with MosFet transistors, intended to reinforce the signal of Strats.
- MXR DynaComp, the compressor of the first albums Servant boy and War, used on the solo of " New Year' S Day ".
- Magnet-Harmonix Big Muff used on the first albums Servant boy and War and on scene since then.
- Magnet-Harmonix MemoryMan Deluxe, the typical echo of The Edge!
- t.c. electronic Dual Parametric Equlizer, used to give the sound of a fixed wah-wah.
- Pearl Graphic-EQ.
- Lovetone' S Big Cheese distortion.
- Lovetone' S Doppelganger Phaser, used on " Staring At The Sun ".
- Lovetone' S Meatball Wraps Filter, used on " Please ".

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