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"It is when we are playing that we are at our most U2yness. I suppose in a way [it's] about purity, about the four of us and whoever the witnesses are." — Adam


- April 21, 1992

by Gene Stout

U2's "Zoo TV" tour isn't for couch potatoes.

The best way to enjoy this high-tech sound-and-video extravaganza is to stand up and move with the energy.

Last night the Irish supergroup turned the Tacoma Dome into a giant dance club, complete with brightly colored East German Trabant cars suspended from the ceiling and giant "Vidiwall" video screens similar to those used in TV news programs.

The "Zoo TV" tour is the first really flamboyant outing in U2's history. This tour was meant to be fun, yet still offer messages about AIDS and the environment.

The video-oriented spectacle didn't begin on the best footing, however. An opening segment by flamboyant Dublin deejay B.F. Fallon, dressed in a red and black cape, did little to build excitement.

But U2's entrance was explosive, with lead singer Bono, dressed head-to-toe in black leather, leading the band - including guitarist The Edge (David Evans), bassist Adam Clayton and drummer Larry Mullen Jr. - through some of the group's most powerful songs.

During "The Fly," screens flashed a dizzying array of words and slogans, including "Remember What You Dream" and "Religion Is a Club." An exotic dancer was featured during "Mysterious Ways."

It wasn't long before Bono and his bandmates ventured onto an extended platform that allowed them to mingle with the crowd. Bono even allowed fans to stroke his leather-clad legs.

One of the show's best moments wasn't high-tech at all. It featured band members performing semi-acoustic songs, including Lou Reed's "Satellite of Love," from the platform that extended into the audience.

The latter half of the show downplayed the technical aspects in favor of a rich assortment of U2 gems like "Pride (In the Name of Love)," "Where the Streets Have No Name" and "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For," which Bono preceeded with a message to fans to exercise their voting rights in the upcoming presidential elections.

U2's first encore, which featured Bono in a garish lame suit and cowboy hat, began with a powerful "Desire."

After the song, Bono dialed the White House in a prank call to the president.

Opening act the Pixies managed a raucous, entertaining set of poetic pop tunes and abrasive rockers but failed to connect with the vast crowd.

Seattle P-I, 1992. All rights reserved.

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