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"It's an extraordinary thing, I will admit, to have [U.S. Sen.] Jesse Helms to throw a lunch for you. You know it's bad for both of our images." — Bono

by Ben

My 3rd show of this tour and it was excellent! Bono's voice was right on, sound mix outstanding for an old hockey rink, and several John Lennon tributes sprinkled into the setlist made this a special evening. Bono absolutely nailed Norwegian Wood, and Help (Bono introduced it as a "Showtune") was dedicated to the Katrina relief workers.

Anything from Boy was sacrificed at the expense of the Lennon/McCartney material, which was a shame but I'm not complaining. How often are you going to hear U2 cover Instant Karma?

Until The End of the World absolutely rocked; Edge went ballistic at the end of that one. For me the song of the night was Gloria. Sounded as good, maybe better than the first time I heard it live 22 years ago. And the Hartford crowd really stepped it up at the end of With or Without You. I think Bono was sincerely impressed with the volume and quality of the singing coming back at him from the Hartford audience, as he gave us a round of applause.

Everyone has songs they wish they could have heard; I'm not alone when I say Crumbs would have been a show topper, but for some reason U2 has pulled that one out very sparingly so far on this tour. New Year's Day is another. How about Twilight? Maybe next time.

All in all a satisfying and uplifting show. Anyone who reads this board knows this band has joined the Beatles/Stones plateau. U2 is clearly in their prime and at the top of thier game, and I appreciate them stopping in Hartford whenever they tour.

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