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"We never suffered from that indie mentality of 'big is bad.' A lot of groups that could've gone on to make amazing music crumbled under some sort of inverse guilt or mistrust of success." — Edge

by Andrew

My first U2 concert!

My wife and I flew from Adelaide to Sydney the night before the show. There isnt any band in the world that I would leave my home city specifically to see, but with U2 I didnt even think twice about it.

We arose at 5:00am, left the hotel by 5:30am, caught a taxi to Telstra Stadium and arrived just before 6:00am. There were a number of people camping by the gate but we were about 50th in line, which excited us because we felt assured to be ellipse. The days wait was exiting, uncomfortable and tiring. We sat in the blazing heat all morning and by midday it had become oppressive. However, we were blessed with afternoon shade which was nothing short of a blessing. We met some really friendly people in line and there was a great communal atmosphere amongst the group that had waited all day.

We entered the stadium at 5:30, quickly made our way down to the ellipse and camped ourselves to the left of Bonos (right hand side) b-stage. We were second in line and I luckily had someone very short in front of me (I usually score the 6 foot 2 guy at GA concerts.) I could hardly believe it. My dream of seeing U2 live in concert was about to come true and here we were just one meter from the b-stage.

Kanye West came on around 7:15 and played for a little over 30 minutes. His set was pretty good. It isnt really my kind of thing but some tracks, especially Jesus Walks, were excellent.

At around 8:45 the dream came true, as the intro to City Of Blinding Lights started and Bono entered at our b-stage. Seeing Bono for the first time, standing one meter from me, draped in an Australian flag is something I will never forget.

I was glad that they played Until The End Of The World, which is one of my favorite live tracks. The entire show was simply stunning but the progression of songs from Love And Peace Or Else through to One was the most powerful demonstration of anything I have ever seen in my life. Bullet The Blue Sky is a song I have grown tired of, but it was perhaps the greatest moment of the show for me. Edges guitar solo was tasty, and watching Bono crawl blind on his hands and knees with his Coexist headband over his eyes right to our b-stage was intense. Being so close to him as he sang Miss Sarajevo was indescribable. The only time I have ever openly wept at a rock concert was when he sang Pavarottis part.

Adam came down our b-stage a few times and seemed to have something for a gorgeous woman in the front row. He twice let her touch his bass guitar while he played and later gave her his guitar pick.

All the many snippets at the end of songs were a real treat. Bono absolutely nailed Sometimes You Cant Make It On Your Own. Desire was a little rough around the edges but it felt truly improvised which made it fun. Hearing some tracks from All That You Cant Leave Behind was special and the re-worked version of Kite was beautiful.

Despite being absolutely exhausted at the end of the show I cannot wait to see them again in a few days time in my home town of Adelaide. This Sydney show, with out a doubt, will forever be the greatest concert I have ever seen. Im stating an obvious fact that millions of people around the world already know, but U2 are simply one incredible live band.

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