A Study of U2 Album Release Dates

July 24th, 2014

When No Line On The Horizon was about to be released in 2009, I did a some research to see how soon concert tickets would go on sale after a U2 release. I saved that information in a file.

With all the recent U2 November release hype, I decided to open that file of U2 release dates. I wanted to see where a possible Tuesday, November 4, 2014 release might fit in with their prior releases. Here are my findings.

Seven out of 12 U2 records were released in the 4th quarter, five in October and two in November. Four albums were released in the first quarter, two in February and two in March. And the odd duck was Zooropa, released in the third quarter of 1993 on July 5th.

Nine albums were released on a Monday, two on a Tuesday and one on a Friday.

AlbumYearDateDayQuarter
Boy1980Oct. 20thMonday4th
October1981Oct 12thMonday4th
War1983Feb. 28thMonday1st
The Unforrgetable Fire1984Oct. 1stMonday4th
The Joshua Tree1987Mar. 9thMonday1st
Rattle and Hum1988Oct. 10thMonday4th
Achtung Baby1991Nov. 18thMonday4th
Zooropa1993Jul. 5thMonday3rd
Pop1997Mar. 4thTuesday1st
All That You Can’t Leave Behind2000Oct. 30thMonday4th
How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb2005Nov. 22ndTuesday4th
No Line on the Horizon2009Feb. 27thFriday1st
Siren?2014Nov. 4th?Tuesday4th

 

In a discussion on “street dates,” Terry Currier of Music Millennium, who has worked record retail from 1972 to present, explained that “… there did not use to be street date. Some record store may be lucky enough to get an order on Friday and another one down the street may not have got theirs until Monday, meaning one record store had a three day advantage of selling the title and word did get around. So the other account lost out.

Terry went on to explain “I worked in Hawaii in 1974 and went to the airport to pick up the new Rolling Stones album instead of waiting for the truck service to bring it the next day, because I thought the competitors would do the same thing. Later on, street date was established by the industry to eliminate this. With a Monday street date (which we had briefly if I remember right), if there was a shipping problem, they could not fix it and an account might not get [their shipment] for a day or two later. With a Tuesday street date, and with a plan to ship the product to arrive at stores on Monday, if there was a problem, overnight shipment could correct it. It’s really that simple.

Another interesting point is that the U.S. charts come out on Monday, so Tuesday releases get the most days on sale before the next chart is released. In Europe, the sales charts come out on Sunday, thus Monday releases get the most days on sale before the next chart is released.

Considering the facts stated above, and that a Universal Music Group International tweet (@UMusicColombia) stated the new U2 album “Sirens” will be finished in September (that tweet has since been removed, but you can see the screenshot below), and the little “snafu” on u2.com a few weeks back where Live Nation listed the release date for an untitled album under the discography link (see second screen shot below), it is a very good possibility that we will see the new U2 release drop on Tuesday, November 4. 2014.

umcl-tweet
  Universal Music Group International Tweet from July 25, 2014

u2-album-date?
U2.com leak that has since been removed

Share your thoughts, and scroll down to see all comments.

 

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