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"You write a song because something hurts." — Adam

by Nate Jackson

It was difficult to surpass the hailstorms energy that pummeled waiting fans with marble-sized pellets fifteen minutes before the doors opened, but on this night it was U2s electrical storm that won out.

The Boys entered one-by-one with hand-held spotlights in tow, their intense expressions showering the crowd as much as their mobile beams. Larry, the Edge, Adam and Bono Four individuals who on this night fused into one magnetic entity and captivated the entirety of Denvers Pepsi Center.

Suddenly a large kettle drum appeared at the tip of the ellipse and like a victorious Celtic warrior Larry began pounding the tribal beat of Love and Peace or Else and Bono sang as if a general taunting an advancing army. The opening trio was complete with Vertigo and Elevation, a combination that unleashed a flurry of power which descended onto the crowd like a wave from God.

The Boys seemed fresh, with each musician nearing perfection. Bonos voice soared while surfing the melodies like a long-boarder carving musical waves. The Edge tore through old and new songs with confidence, lending to sonic experimentation including the atmospheric blues in Bullet the Blue Sky, and a raw, echoing opening riff in the Fly. Larry hit the drums with purpose and sang backup throughout, a part he appeared to relish. Adam provided the steady glue with the poise of respected diplomat, and even took a few laps around the ellipse, occasionally cracking a wry smile.

Bono controlled the crowd the entire night with his vocal virtuosity, numerous intimate moments including a stirring Sometimes You Cant Make it on Your Own without the Bono-shades, and quizzical parlays into cross-dressing that included the application of one fans lipstick. Bonos pleas for Africa were straightforward and logical, yet impassioned and affecting, and as they intertwined with Where the Streets Have no Name and One, provided the motivation to change the world.

Fans of Actung Baby were treated to a hat trick in the encore; Zoo Station, the Fly and Mysterious Ways, all of which were dripping with the Edges dirty guitar and Adams throbbing bass. The crowd was flying and the no one wanted it to end. 40 closed the evening in traditional fashion, with Adam and the Edge dutifully switching bass and guitar. With the crowd chanting how long, the boys left the stage one-by-one. Bono, Adam, the Edge and Larry four individuals yet one.

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