U2 seek inspiration for new recording studio

The rock band U2 are seeking architectural inspiration for a 200ft-high towerblock overlooking Dublin that will house their new recording studio.

Yesterday the lead singer, Bono, announced a contest for designers to submit ideas on how the tower, which will include a penthouse studio with panoramic views of the river Liffey, should look.

U2 lost a planning battle to save their present studio at the Old Hanover Quay, Grand Canal Dock, in January,, which they had used since 1980. It is to be demolished.

The tower is to be finished within four years, but Bono said: "Things get very rough when U2 make a record, there's a lot of passion and a lot of disputes. I don't really want to be at the top of the building and stuck inside."

The tower is part of a redevelopment scheme he said would add to the regeneration of Ireland's capital city. "The new Dublin's something I'm very excited about."

There have been other unconventional studios. The former Beatles producer, Sir George Martin, sought inspiration in his Air studios on the Caribbean island of Montserrat, and the late Ronnie Lane, of the Faces, used a trailer as a mobile studio.

The Dublin Docklands Development Authority is calling on architects from across the world to offer blueprints for a "slim-point block". U2 will nominate a band member to sit on the jury examining the proposals.

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