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Sunday, 23 August 2009

U2 360 Tour: Hampden Park 18th August 2009

(The Claw)

It's been more than a few days since the U2 show @ Hampden Park, Glasgow and I thought I should put down a few thoughts about the show.
The Set List for the show
  1. Breathe
  2. No Line On The Horizon
  3. Get On Your Boots
  4. Magnificent
  5. Flower Of Scotland (snippet) / Beautiful Day / Here Comes The Sun (snippet)
  6. Elevation / Up On The Catwalk (snippet)
  7. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For / Movin' On Up (snippet)
  8. Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out Of
  9. Unknown Caller
  10. The Unforgettable Fire / A Day Without Me (snippet)
  11. City Of Blinding Lights
  12. Vertigo
  13. I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight / Two Tribes (snippet)
  14. Sunday Bloody Sunday / Oliver's Army (snippet)
  15. Pride (In The Name Of Love)
  16. MLK
  17. Walk On
  18. Where The Streets Have No Name / All You Need Is Love (snippet)
  19. One

  20. encore(s):
  21. Ultra Violet (Light My Way)
  22. With Or Without You
  23. Moment of Surrender
The last time I saw U2 in a live setting was way back in 1987, 12th June to be precise on The Joshua Tree Tour @ Wembley Stadium. There were a few reasons why it took so long to see them again. Firstly, after the release of Joshua Tree I kind of lost interest in the music they were releasing. I had purchased the 'Rattle & Hum' album in 1988 and seen the movie but 'Achtung Baby', 'Zooropa' and 'Pop' just didn't move me the way previous albums did. It wasn't until the release of 'All hat You Can't Leave Behind' that I once again got back on the U2 train.

Secondly, the ticket prices for the shows had always been so expensive that I could never justify spending that amount of cash. So it was great to hear that on the 360 Tour that the band were making available a number of tickets priced around £30 and I jumped at the chance to see them again.
The first thing you see when entering the stadium is of course the mammoth stage known as The Claw. It's an incredible sight and you know that with a stage as special looking as that then a phenomenal show awaits. We arrived at the stadium as Glasvegas were winding up their set. We had missed The Hours who had gone on stage around 6pm. Glasvegas I have to admit were nothing too special. Live their material actually sounds quite samey.
'No Line on the Horizon'

When U2's intro music kicks in ('Space Oddity' by David Bowie) the crowd goes wild and as Larry gets the ball rolling the band enter the fray and they open with four tracks from their latest release 'No Line on the Horizon'. Having followed the tour on U2start.com it's not a huge surprise. The title track and 'Magnificent' stand out in the early going. 'Get On Your Boots' doesn't grip me at all.

'Magnificent'

Next up it's 'Beautiful Day' that includes a little snippet of 'Flower of Scotland' in the intro and also 'Here Comes the Sun'. 'Elevation' follows with a shout out to Simple Minds and the place is jumping like mad when they launch into 'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For' and man you ain't heard anything until you have witnessed 60,000 fans singing that one in unison with the band!
'I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For'

'Stuck in a Moment' is followed by the excellent 'Unknown Caller'

'Unforgettable Fire' was great to hear live and when they got to 'I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight' I switched off. Was never a fan of their dance stuff!
Seemed odd that right after that awful dance song they jumped right into 'Sunday Bloody Sunday', which I have to say still sounds so incredible after all these years.
'Sunday Bloody Sunday'


The home stretch of the show was classic - 'Pride', 'Walk On', 'Where the Streets Have No Name' and 'One'. 'Walk On' is quite possibly my favourite U2 song in years and I was so looking forward to hearing it but lo and behold does the PA not go crazy and we are left with silence apart from the muffled sound of the stage monitors! It was the only real blip of the whole evening so I guess I shouldn't complain to loudly! I loved the little visual with Desmond Tutu at the start of 'One'. Real quality stuff.
The encore was not bad (though 'Ultra Violet (Light My Way)' is not a song I like too much) and all finished up with one of the finest tracks from the new album: Moment of Surrender.

'Moment of Surrender'


All in all it was a fantastic show, a few low moments in my mind but overall it was pretty classy.















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