To call your album The E.N.D. can give a certain impression. But, far from it being the end for the Los Angeles-based Black Eyed Peas, the world's best-selling hip-hop group are celebrating their chart-troubling career on tour. "The E.N.D.", it turns out, stands for "The Energy Never Dies".
Here they are this week, fresh from three Grammy Award wins, performing in New York before their The E.N.D. world tour reaches the UK in May.
The R'n'B and hip-hop quartet have to this date sold 26 million albums worldwide since their inception in the early Nineties – and also made history with "Rock That Body" when they broke the Billboard record for the number of weeks spent at the top of the Hot 100 Singles chart. Here, they have had three No 1 singles, with "Boom Boom Pow", "I Gotta Feeling" and "Meet Me Halfway", and they have been a presence in the UK's Top 20 chart since The E.N.D., their fifth album, was released 10 months ago (it has sold more than 1.3 million copies over here).
Unusually for a band of their size and status, they are known for partying with their audience; after nearly every show on their tour, they hold aftershow parties where they DJ, dance and sing with their fans. The energy of The E.N.D. was inspired by the underground world of electro- and rock-infused house music – the band-leader will.i.am was fascinated with underground dance clubs back home in Los Angeles.
But it's not all play for the Black Eyed Peas. The group are said to take a studio with them on the road so that they can remix tracks and write songs wherever they are.