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Irish rockers U2's latest album, How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb, climbed up the UK chart in at an alarming speed, this week, entering at number one.

The album – which many consider to be one of U2’s best --  knocked Eminem's Encore off the top spot, which it had been sitting in for two weeks running. In turn, Robbie Williams' Greatest Hits slipped down to third place.

Pop critics see U2's whole career as a kind of healing, mediating enterprise. Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen feel they have a calling, and there's nothing like crisis to spark their sense of burden. Two decades ago the troubles in Ireland animated epic laments such as New Year's Day and Sunday Bloody Sunday. Today it's the troubles everywhere else and with this album U2 is, again, making a statement.

In the past U2 really hit the big time with the 'War LP, released in March 1983. Boosted by the success of the 'New Year's Day' single, the record entered the UK charts at Number 1, and established the band as a mainstream act. Further tours followed through the US and Europe, where the songs for the mini Live LP 'Under a Blood Red Sky’ were recorded. This record marked the end of an era, as it was the last record before Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois were engaged to work on future LPs.

And in other news…

Bono has had to tell fellow stars to get their hands off his famous line from the Band Aid song.   In the original version of Do They Know It's Christmas, the rock legend sang: "And tonight thank God it's them, instead of you."

Today's stars had been lining up to sing the words when the new version of the song is recorded.   Robbie Williams has admitted he was desperate to get the line.    And Coldplay's Chris Martin, Fran Healy from Travis and Justin Hawkins from The Darkness were all vying for the honour, according to the sourcres.      

Then Bono just put his foot down, telling them all: "That's my line and I'm doing it - so the rest of you can f*** off!"