U2 fans got their first taste of the band's forthcoming fourteenth album Songs of Experience yesterday. The song, The Blackout was released in live form on the band's official Facebook page. The new song had been secretly filmed in July at Amsterdam's Westerunie venue on the European leg of U2's Joshua Tree 2017 tour, which marked the 30th anniversary of the band's biggest selling album. However, The Blackout will not be the first single from Songs of Experience. The accompanying message for the new song said, "'The Blackout' just for you. From the new album, 'Songs of Experience'.

Tune in August 30th. First single, 'You're the Best Thing About Me' coming Sept. 6th along with album news. #U2TheBlackout#U2SongsofExperience. In the darkness, we learn to see."

Following the upload of the song on Facebook, it was quickly put on YouTube by fans. However, as of today, these videos are being taken down by Universal Music Group due to copyright infringement. A short clip of the video can be found on the video below.

What does 'The Blackout' sound like?

The Blackout is much noisier than any of U2's recent material with a sound that harks back to that found on the band's 1991 album, Achtung Baby. Thematically, the song appears to be about the destruction and reconstruction of the Earth, with Bono singing lines such as, "Dinosaur wonders why it still walks the Earth, The meteor promises it's not gonna hurt ...

When the lights go out in the darkness where we learn to see." U2 have recently collaborated with OneRepublic front man Ryan Tedder, an experience which may have influenced 'The Blackout's catchy pop-driven chorus.

What we know about 'Songs of Experience'

Songs of Experience is the sequel to U2's 2014 album Songs of Innocence.

The band have also hinted at the title Songs of Ascent, which may be that of a third instalment of the series. As well as The Blackout, U2 have also played the new song The Little Things That Give You Away on The Joshua Tree 2017 tour, which is also expected to be on the new album. Songs of Experience was actually completed last year, but its release was put on hold due to the band feeling that, in the wake of Donald Trump's presidential win, the album did not suit the changed political and social climate.

In the interim period, the band have removed three songs from the album's track listing, which now features twelve songs.

The Blackout is the first taste of what is certain to be one of the music highlights of 2017. U2 are currently completing the final leg of their 'Joshua Tree 2017' tour and it is thought that they will start the supporting tour for Songs of Experience next year.