Sporting bizarre eye-liner but looking like a Dad at a 21st birthday party, Bono kicked off the Brit Awards on a night when old and new collided.
U2 were given the ideal platform to promote their new song, Get On Your Boots, in front of the cream of the music industry at London's Earls Court last night.
The ageing rockers were the perfect tonic on a night when older acts such as Pet Shop Boys and Elbow mixed with more youthful talents such as Duffy and The Ting Tings. And ridding himself of whatever credibility he had left, the U2 front man repeatedly blurted afterwards that he thought that Girls Aloud were a "great band".
The choice of Girls Aloud as award winners raised considerable eyebrows after they won the award for their hit song The Promise.
And Bono insisted the girl group is "at the cutting edge of pop music".
"They have everything a pop band should have -- songs, the look, it's all there," he told reporters.
Bono (48) said U2 see themselves as contemporaries of Coldplay, Kings of Leon and The Killers. And he proved it later on as he joined Coldplay and The Killers on stage for a rare joint gig at the O2 Shepherds Bush Empire in London to perform All These Things That I've Done.
Coldplay played Back For Good with Take That's Gary Barlow, with frontman Chris Martin saying the collaboration would cheer him up after not winning an award.
Earlier at the Brits, Derry's Nadine Coyle and her co-singers won the live public vote for The Promise.
But the night belonged to Welsh songstress Duffy, who scooped three awards -- best British album for her debut Rockferry, best female solo artist and best breakthrough act.
Elbow were the surprise winners of best British group, while US rockers Kings of Leon claimed the gongs for best international album and best international group.
Veteran British metal band Iron Maiden scooped the award for best British live act, while US singer Katy Perry won best international female solo artist, with Jay-Z winning the male gong.
The best solo male artist award was won by Paul Weller.
However, the highlight for many was the performance of the Pet Shop Boys and US singer Lady GaGa, which closed the show.