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"We were also annoyed at the word rock." — Bono, on coming up with the album title Pop



by NealP

Another Fantastic show! I've noticed a lot of parents bringing YOUNG (7,8,9,10ish) kids, so i decided to bring my 10 year old to his first concert. He loves U-2 but i knew we had to have seats just in case so for my 9th and Final (sob, sob) Vertigo show I actually sat in seats after 8 floor experiences. The good was I saw one of the most fantastic lighting concerts ever and honestly you miss most of it being in or near the Ellipse. The bad is that, for me anyway, the energy level is a bit less...I guess I'm just addicted to being in the middle of it all! So I saw the show in a whole different perspective. Specifically, I realized just how many casual fans attend these shows and are there because it's "the show" to attend. To these fans they must hear the hits. To us fanatics the show is made by hopefully hearing that one song you hadn't heard before live. For most tonight it was "Bad" but for me it was MLK-which i thought should have been in the setlist at least sporadically all along. The point is that it is truly the genius of U-2 that their show totally satisfies the "fanatic" and those who don't know every song but still come away saying what a great show it was and that is no easy feat with fans as demanding as us. The other observation in comparing the opener in San Diego to London/Dublin and now the 3rd leg is just how much better the band gets as the tour progresses and how many songs have "snippets" now-many more than the "Elevation" tour. Tonight it was "Rock the Casbah" and others already mentioned and a VERY extended "In a Little while" at the end of Still Haven't Found in which Bono made up most of the lyrics and just overall cracked us all up...wait for the Boot and you'll see what I mean. And for me, thats the stuff that makes the show unique and fun and not the "same old-same old" that fans were complaining about on the first leg. Also, tonight had a cracking "I will Follow"-in fact the first 4 songs were 100% in your face high energy U-2 and no one was sitting which was good to see. Not as much chat tonight or as many pulled on stage but the setlist was great, Bono's voice was great (which i was concerned about) and I am still amazed at how he hits the notes In Miss Sarajevo-WOW! Finally, I forgot to mention in the first night's review (I could have written 5 pages about that show!) that during "The Ocean" Bono rapped a little free association and mentioned..."first album, hearing our songs, KROQ radio etc" much like he did in 2001 during "Out of Control " at Staples and tonight he mentioned how exciting it was to hear I Will Follow played on the radio at 20 years of age...I love that stuff because it reminds us that this band was playing The Country Club and The Santa Monica Civic, KROQ was truly alternative and those of us who listened to it all the time thought that these bands would always be "underground". It's not a bad thing that U-2 is the biggest band in the world and in fact as long as the music is this good, this fresh and this inspiring it's a very GOOD thing that they are the biggest band in the world-IPOD ad not withstanding for my friend in Chicago. It's nice though to know that they-and I-remember-"18 years old, KROQ playing our song on the radio...it's Out of Control!!! Now and always the GREATEST BAND EVER, with more guts, conviction and credibility than anyone-GOD BLESS THEM ALL!

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