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"If somebody wants to see U2 because they find it really good dance music . . . that's as relevant and as important as somebody who comes because the lyrics talk about Central America." — Larry



by Neilson

They started with City of Blinding Lights because they were shooting a video. Usually, starting their show off with one of their anthem pieces is totally cool. However, they normally extend the hell out of it to build and build and make it really dramatic. Since they were shooting a video, they had to do it the way they did it on the single. It felt like a rushed beginning to the concert.

Bad was totally sweet. It made it all worth it.

Prior to playing One, Bono launched into the critique of Paul Martin and made his speech challenging Martin to deliver on his commitment to spend more on foreign aid. He asked people to call on their cell phones, right then and there. The lights were lowered and the stadium was filled with the blue glow of hundreds of cell phone LCDs. It was the 21st century equivalent to the lighter burn. Very cool.

On a personal note, there was the most annoying drunk chick with her boyfriend next to me. Ruined a lot of the concert for me. I told them to STFU but they got really pissed. A real bummer. Our seats turned out to be quite nice though. Off to stage left in the 300 level. We had a great view and the band treated us well by giving us our own screen and speakers. Also the stage is very open so that even from the side the show looked great. The sound however was a bit muddy off to the side.

During Mysterious Ways in the encore a funny little thing happened in that Bono picked a woman with a big sign that read "I just ditched my wheelchair, will you dance with me?" to come up onto the ring. She did. She did not dance nor did she want to dance however. As the Edge skillfully cycled through riffs Bono eventually worked out that he had grabbed the wrong woman. A much more energetic woman was then brought up who was all into dancing. Not the best note to end on.

But they didn't end there!. They of course ended with an audible to play Origin of the Species and then segued into 40. The crowd didn't quite know what to do during Origin. Most people sat down. They sat down during Origin of the Species, during the encore! What's up with that Vancouver? When they launched into 40 they were still sitting. That's like sitting through the national anthem for crying out loud. It just isn't done. The crowd redeemed themselves however by singing along enthusiastically and eventually standing up. The boys left one by one as is traditionally done leaving Larry to keep the groove going. He brought the volume down and stopped. The crowd kept singing. He sat with his head down as if in prayer. After the crowd got through singing "How long to sing their song," twice, Larry exploded into motion and started playing again very energetically. It was just us and Larry. He finished with a strong hit, put down his sticks, waved and walked off. The crowd kept singing. I wish they would have just exploded into cheers and ended on Larry's queue, but it was a very cool ending to a great show.

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