U2's BIG VEGAS BET

U2 left us guessing when the band declared that a big announcement would arrive on Super Bowl Sunday. At the two-minute warning, the group appeared in an ad revealing that it will be the opening act of a state-of-the art venue in Las Vegas later this year.

MSG Sphere at the Venetian will open its doors this September with a string of shows called U2:UV Achtung Baby Live at the Sphere. The special run—not to be confused with a residency—marks the Full Stop-repped band's first live outing in four years and follows the massive success of The Joshua Tree Tours and 2018's eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE indoor tour.

"The beauty of the Sphere is not only the groundbreaking technology that will make it so unique, with the world’s most advanced audio system integrated into a structure designed with sound quality as a priority; it’s also the possibilities of an immersive experience in real and imaginary landscapes," said The Edge before running out of breath. "In short, it’s a canvas of unparalleled scale and image resolution and a once-in-a-generation opportunity. We all thought about it and decided we’d be mad not to accept the invitation.”

Madison Square Garden Entertainment boss James L. Dolan added, “MSG Sphere’s advanced technology allows a legendary band like U2 to bring its music to life in entirely new ways. The Sphere is a new medium that will redefine entertainment.”

U2's longtime drummer, Larry Mullen Jr., will take time off to undergo and recuperate from surgery in 2023, so Bram van den Berg will fill in to join Bono, The Edge and Adam Clayton on the MSG Sphere stage.

The band addressed Mullen's absence in a statement, saying, "It's going to take all we've got to approach the Sphere without our bandmate in the drum seat, but Larry has joined us in welcoming Bram, who is a force in his own right."

Fans around the globe can register here for information about show dates and tickets. Watch the aforementioned ad below. Thank goodness that teaser sphere wasn't yet another Chinese spy balloon.

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