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I joined a band to hit things.-- Larry, 2002


by DanP

Theres no way that I can be objective about tonights show (my 5th Vertigo show) because I had floor seats. We got to MSG around 6 PM, waited for a few hours, and wound up in the front row of the floor (at the center of the outside of the ellipse). Being about 3 feet from Bono, Edge, Adam, and Larry during different points of the evening is truly special. So, if you have floor seats to an upcoming U2 show, please heed this advice: Get to the show early and dont worry about whether you get into the ellipse or not (a random lottery determines if you and your partner get in or not). If you show up when they open the arena (usually 1.5 hours before show time), then youll probably wind up in the same position that I did. If you arrive as the opening band starts, youll probably be about 4 rows deep, which still isnt bad. But if you show up just for U2, and skip the opening band, youll be 20 rows back and be missing a great experience. So, if you get into the ellipse then GREAT but if not, then dont worryyou got there early and youre going to position yourself at the center of the ellipse and let Bono and the boys come to you. When you can hear Bonos passion in Sometimes You Cant Make it on your Own and Larrys drum in Love and Peace or Else directly (as opposed to through the sound system), you will forget all about being inside the ellipse. They are so close to you that you can actually hear the split second delay from their mouths/drums to when you hear it again through the sound system! Again, its truly impossible to write an objective review of U2 when you feel like you were part of the show. But, my impression was that Bono had 80% of his voice and 90% of his energy back after the previous nights problems. The sound at these shows is unbelievable as long as you wear professional earplugs. I remember going to U2 shows and the sound was mediocre at best. Not anymore. Joe (their long-time sound guy that they recognized tonight) is doing an amazing job and all 5 of the Vertigo shows that Ive seen have had unbelievably great sound similar to what youd expect from a Pink Floyd or Rush show. One can really hear the different tones coming from Edges varying guitars. One thing though, Joe must be losing his hearing, as these U2 concerts really do require earplugs as they are louder than the average heavy metal concert. A final thought: Keane is a great band that youre going to be seeing on the charts soon. Get there early and enjoy. One day youll be hoping to get floor seats for a Keane show and youll wish you had seen them back on that U2 tour in 2005. See you at Fridays show (and my final Vertigo show)!

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