Bono talks to award-winning profile writer Chrissy Iley about life on the road in his 50s and singing about death.
Bono "can't do" as much as he used to - the singer has become hyper aware of his health in recent months. The Dublin rocker was forced to abruptly stop a recent gig in Berlin as his voice failed him on stage.
The 58-year-old told Iley, “Yes. I can’t do as much as I used to. On previous tours I could meet a hundred lawmakers in between shows and now I know I can’t do that."
Read More: Relief as Bono's voice returns
The father-of-four said that this tour is "particularly demanding" for the four-piece Irish band.
"Whether you have a face-off with your own mortality or somebody close to you does, you are going to get to a point in your life where you ask questions about where you’re going," he said.
On the subject of another U2 tour, Bono said he "doesn't know" if there will be another.
“I don’t know. I don’t take anything for granted, " he said. “It’s OK to acknowledge work you’ve done and give it respect, but if it’s the best we can do, then we’re not an ongoing concern.”
Read More: Could this be the end of U2 after 40 years?
However, Larry Mullen maintained that there will probably be more projects in the future.
“You never know. I assume there’ll be another album. I don’t know that anybody needs another U2 record or tour anytime soon. People could do with taking a break from us and vice versa.”
Iley writes that after a show in Boston, Bono was visibly shaken. She notes that all band members now require physiotherapy and long bouts of downtime to recuperate after their performances.
“I’m not sure that my younger self would approve of where I’ve got to, but I like to think that if my younger self stopped punching my face, my younger self would see that I’ve actually stayed true to all the things I believed in," Bono enthused.
"I’m still in a band that shares everything. I’m not just shining a light on troublesome situations, but trying to do something about them. I still have my faith, I’m still in love, I’m still in a band."
On the subject of his recent encounters with ill health, Bono said, "It’s not a very sexy subject, mortality, is it?”
“But what is sexy is being in a rock’n’roll band and saying, ‘Here’s our new song, it’s about death,'" he laughed.
The Edge agreed that Bono has a very "ambivalent attitude to his physical self".
"He doesn’t naturally take responsibility for his physical wellbeing. Which is fine in your twenties, but you get to a certain point … It is a difficult shift for him. If you spend too much time thinking you are old and past it, you probably can’t do it any more," the guitarist said.
From vegetarianism to restorative fitness regimes, read the band's approach to aging gracefully - well, as gracefully as rock'n'roll legends could at least - on the Times here.