@U2 Home Page - U2 News, Lyrics, Tour Dates & more       https://www.atu2.com
[Skip to Content]

"Isn't all art an attempt to identify yourself, really? At some level, I've made a career out of personality crisis." — Bono

by Roobah

Who persists this phenomenon that this show never happened? I talked with a reporter at the Denver show during the Elevation Tour that ALSO said he was at the SLC show in '83 and does not remember this show in a negative light. I thought I'd set the record straight to my recollection and even went to the library and dug the media coverage out for this show. I'm quite sure the Salt Lake Tribune would have given the show a more favorable review than the Mormon-based Deseret News, but I couldn't find a review of the show in the Tribune. BUT I DID find the review by the Deseret News and have provided the word-by-word copy directly from microfiche.

My own review:

Ricky was probably the one that was thrown out of the show for throwing mini-bottles at the band. That's why he doesn't remember the show.

About 1/2 a dozen people were involved and escorted out. Some people upon seeing the commotion figured the show was over and tried to leave. Bono said, don't leave I'll be back after we get this problem taken care of. I'm pretty sure it was Bono that said that. It might have been McGuiness that came out and dealt with it further. It was easy for me to hear this because I was on the front row, in front of The Edge. The commotion seemed to take place near the center, sort of in the middle of the crowd, but too far away for me to hear what was being said. This concert happened during the times of virtually no security and everyone had drugs and mini-bottles of booze. Yes, the show was stopped temporarily, as I recall, because someone in the audience didn't appreciate Bono's monologue about the virtues of Amnesty International's work. As I recall, the show started with one or two songs, beginning the show, I'm almost positive with "Gloria". I don't recall all the details of each song. I will say I definitely remember "Gloria" was played at LEAST twice. I believe "October" was the first song of the encore performance, as a duet with Bono and the Edge.

The band gave us a "special preview" of one of its songs from it's upcoming album. I don't recall if they had it named that song yet. Bono assured us that the song was being practiced in the studio and wasn't really ready for public performance, but given that our show had been stopped and restarted, they would play it for us in 'rough form'. After a minute or two of telling the audience when to join in with 'oh, oh-oh, oh, oh' (we practiced it with hand signals a few times) they played. Now I don't remember what song that was, but it could only have been "Pride in the Name of Love" or MAYBE "Unforgettable Fire" but I can't think of a section that sings the audience part fitting, so it must have been "Pride" -- it's the only song on the next album that would fit. We were told that was the first public performance ever of the song, and after muddling through it through some points, other parts being good, that the song would not be performed again until the band could do a better job on it. Bono wanted to sing the song because he said he had a special personal liking for it.

I had just watched Bono and the band on MTV US Festival LIVE and was really anticipating this concert. For me, the tour of the ceiling was surely the highlight of the show, just like it was at the US Festival. Even though I was on the front row, and with my (now-ex) husband, he was constantly complaining that he couldn't see well enough. Too many people came in with their Mohawk hairdos that got in the way of viewing. Well, when Bono did the climb up the ceiling, I had to elbow my husband and ask him if he could see now!

Toward the end of the show, Bono had to coax a few girls on stage to dance, it was hard to get the first up there (even I refused, silly me!) but once he got one or two, several were willing to join Bono onstage for a group dance. I think the girls were nervous, but Bono seemed to be having fun and by the time they were lead off the stage, everyone seemed to see the fun of it.

As for Adam's grinning, (in answer to the newspaper review).... Yes, he did. He's got the most wonderful smile and seems to like paying more attention to the audience than his playing. But hey, do you want to hear him play or get his attention personally? Even today, it isn't that hard to get Adam's attention at a concert and get him to grin at you. Keep on grinnin' Adam, we love it! I've always been convinced that it is Adam that has the most fun at the concerts he plays in.

A few times, Bono really had a tough time keeping the show together, seeming to forget a line or beat here or there putting the rest of the band off. The Edge REALLY tied the whole show together, performing superbly in every way. It seemed to me it was The Edge holding the band's performance together and sometimes a look of strain on his face at a missed line or out of tune or off beat by Bono was evident... but he adapted and kept the show going.

It seemed to me that Bono was trying TOO HARD to please the audience. I think most of the audience appreciated it. We especially appreciated it when offered the opportunity to take requests from the audience. The first request was for Gloria. I don't remember if they band played it, I don't think they did. Because if they had, it means it would have been played 3 times during the same show. Remember, the show was started over, and Gloria was the first song of the night (to the best of my recollection), so it had already been played twice. The reason for accepting requests was they band admitted they had a limited set of music to play and was willing to fill the time with audience favorites. Another request that was played was An Cat Dubh.

My favorite highlights were '40' (but that made it difficult to leave with the audience finishing the set!) and 'Party Girl' and watching the Edge play BOTH guitar and keyboards for 'New Year's Day'.

The set pretty much was the same material that was included in other tours before and after this show, except the addition of one song from Unforgettable Fire and repeating songs with requests and restarting the show. I thought I got more than my money's worth. U2 was my favorite band when I went to the show, and their performance solidified my belief.

The Alarm opened the show and I hate to say it, they were completely flawless and played a very fine but short set of about 6 songs or so. They made a great warm-up to the start of the show. My guess is the few audience members didn't appreciate Bono's quirkiness and a bit of singing out of tune after such a fine performance by The Alarm. What I remember most about the Alarm (from the front row) is how YOUNG they were. Later I found out they WERE young, much younger than my early-twenty something age.

Anyway, they whole show was great. The fashion show given by the audience was a trip to behold. Purely punk.


Return to previous page | Post a Review of this show!