Although this tour marks Ash’s first headlining venture in the States in five years, they have hardly been absent from Stateside venues in recent years. In 2002, they spent a good chunk of the year supporting various artists – including Our Lady Peace, Coldplay, Dashboard Confessional, and Saves The Day – around North American cities and were on the Area: Two tour over the summer.

Following Ash’s U.S. outing, which launches May 15 in Boston, the band will head back across the pond for a mix of festival gigs and support slots. Among the confirmed shows are a two-night opening performance for Robbie Williams in Scotland; a spot at the Frequency Festival in Austria; and appearances at the V2003 fest in England.

Ash have been busy working on their follow-up to 2001’s Free All Angels album. The unnamed disc is said to be influenced by the band’s recent documentary film, “Love And Destruction.”

The film was shot in London at the beginning of this year and centers around a basic plot of the band being kidnapped and held in an undisclosed location. In it, each member undergoes some sort of psychological endurance test to discover the “inner truth of Ash.”