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"This image of 'the unforgettable fire' applied not only to the nuclear winterscape of 'A Sort of Homecoming,' but also the unforgettable fire of a man like Martin Luther King, or the consuming fire which is heroin." — Bono

by Amy

Even though I've been a fan of U2 since I first saw their New Year's Day video back in '83, this was my first U2 concert. Let me tell you, it was worth the wait!

We were lucky enough to get into the ellipse, about 4 "rows" back from the stage right in front of The Edge. Absolutely incredible. My husband is one of the most hardcore U2 fans I know and grew up playing guitar imitating The Edge. My 10 year old son is now doing the same thing, so we decided to bring him with us. We are definitely the type of fans who completely appreciated winning the lottery to get into the ellipse!! I'm still shell-shocked, giddy, exuberant, elated and completely exhausted from the whole experience! I can't believe I was 5 feet from "the boys".

Anyway, the performance itself was magical... Bono was ON. I loved seeing him smile and really get into the crowd, even when the crowd wasn't responding the way he wanted them to. And speaking of smiling, we got The Edge to smile by pointing at him in "All Because of You" - he looked down and saw us and flashed us some pearly whites. Magnificent!!

Bono pulled a tattooed guy up onto the stage during Beautiful Day and adlibbed parts of the song to read off some of the guy's tattoos. Then during Mysterious Ways, he brought up a girl (who had been riding on someone's shoulders to get his attention) up and kept her there through all of With our Without You. She was trembling with excitement, but really carried herself well... she even got to run around the ellipse. Lucky, lucky girl.

I was a little disappointed with the setlist, I didn't feel like the songs they picked really got the crowd totally into them at times. I wish they would play New Year's Day on this tour. And they butchered Bullet the Blue Sky, cutting it off in the middle before The Edge's (usually) brilliant guitar solo. There was no "slappin' 'em down" speech from Bono, either. Disappointing!

Overall, though, it was a great show and an incredible experience. The crowd on the floor loved Gloria, All Because of You, Elevation, Beautiful Day... those songs were amazing. I really got into Miracle Drug, Love & Peace, Running to Stand Still. Moments of greatness, all of them. I read where people didn't like them doing Yahweh on the main stage, but I had no problem with that song or others where they stayed up front, since I was right there! :-) I loved that they did 3 encores, too... and finishing with 40 was great for me.

I found some excellent pictures with us in them on U2.com forums, but I can't post those since I don't own them. You're stuck with my crappy camera phone pictures here, unfortunately!

I wasn't planning on going back in the fall, but now we're definitely going to try to get there.

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