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We'd certainly never had a rock star to the house before. -- Melinda Gates, on Bono's visit to her and Bill Gates' home, 2005


by El Vampiro

Ok, so this review's a little late, but better late than never, right?

So I attended night 1 and I almost pissed my pants when I heard golden oldies like "An Cat Dubh/Into the Heart" and "Electric Co." I attended that show with my little bro and an exworker from Guitar Center with his wife in tow. Needless to say that we had a blast and we were among a crowd of diehards and lifelong fans.

I didn't know what to expect with night 2, so my date and I eagerly awaited a magical set with a few surprises...and oh man did U2 deliver.

The set was almost identical to night 1, with "An Cat Dubh/Into the Heart" being ommitted in favor of....GLLLOOORRRRIAAAA!!! It came immediately after "Electric Co," the classic drum intro enticing hoots and hollers from the crowd, and a few of us even air-drummed along to Larry Mullen Bono sang it "carefully" and remained at center stage for the duration of the song. This version even included the obligatory band member introductions with minisolos:
Bono: "Adamn Clayton on the bass!"
Audience: "YAAAAHHHHHH!!!!"

I don't believe they rehearsed the song until sound check that day, and keep in mind it hasn't been played since the LoveTown Tour 1989/1990. It was semi-improvised but great nonetheless.

The second surprise came after "Beautiful Day." "With or Without You's" instantly recognizable musical box intro rang througout the Sports Arena. I turned to my lady and our jaws dropped. We didn't expect to hear WOWY given it wasn't played on night 1, but U2 graced us with the song that night and it was awesome My only complaint was that Larry played the drum parts ala the ZooTV Live In Sydney rendition, riding the toms for the first 2 verses, with the snare and kick backbeat coming in on the "whoooaaaa ohhhhhh ohh ohhhhh" part My date and I attended an Elevation Tour show in November of 2001. The band didn't play WOWY that night, to our disappointment...but the redeeming song in that set was "Out of Control" from the BOY album.

The rest of the set was pretty solid, with Bono showing his mastering of the new songs. I must say that the older tunes may have taken a backseat as far as rehearsing is concerned. The band was very tight, but Bono's vocals were a bit restrained, letting the crowd fill in and push his performance along.

A very rare screw-up occured during "40." Bono sang the entire first verse out of key!!! The band played on while Bono looked confused, looked to each band member than sarcastically said "I think YOU'RE out of key" or something to that effect. We laughed our butts off, but applauded when Bono was able to get back into the "40" headspace.

A great 2nd show with a little variety in the set. It appears that "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For" and "Mysterious Ways" made their debuts in Anaheim, nights 3 & 4 of the American leg. Can't wait for the Staples Center and San Jose gigs

Vampy is out.

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