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by Al Reynolds

Night 2 in Dublin, the sun is shining, and the buzz and excitement walking down the Clonliffe Road is almost palpable.

The first show in my mini-360 tour and having followed each show live "virtually" since Barcelona, I knew what to expect for the most part from the show...or so I thought...

Put simply, nothing can quite prepare one for the awe inspiring sight upon arrival in the stadium for the behemoth that is the claw...it is simply an unbelievable spectacle. Thanks to my U2.com membership, I have to say that my seats were just out of this world, perfect sight-lines in the lower Hogan section 332.

I missed the Republic of Loose (yawn), Kaiser Chiefs warmed the crowd up nicely, and then there was the tortuous one hour wait for the fab four to appear..

An rather apt Space Oddity blares on the PA, the smoke machines spring to life...showtime is near...the sheer beauty of "the Kingdom" interjects on the PA, which has been turned up a number of notches by Joe, and its showtime...

The Croker roar engulfs the stadium and Larry takes to the ramp....looking cool (as always), waving to the crowd, the opening bombast beats of Breathe expode on the PA.

Guitar feedback kicks in and Edge and Adam arrive...then finally Mr Hewson, and we're away....

The next 2 hours and 10 mins are detailed below

Breathe - rocks, fantastic opener

NLOTH - could not wait to hear this song...doesn't disappoint..plenty of crowd participation.

Boots - may have its detractors, but my god, does this song rock like a mofo live -love the intro..the audience officially goes NUTS!!! they really have perfected this song live..and I have a feeling it will be a staple for years to come.

Magnificant - is simply magnificant...audience singing goes up several decibels.

Beautiful day - does exactly what it says on the tin!! fantastic!!

Mysterious ways -YES YES YES...My Favourite U2 song!! Cue many envious eyes from the females of the species around me as Bono drags a Chilean girl on stage.

ISHFWILF - mass singlong, in fact, Bono doesn't start even singing until the second verse....the band are beaming...even Larry!! This is the mother of all homecomings!! Crowd is a choir for this and the following stand by me snippet.

Angel of Harlem...Croker is a gospel house. Wasn't expecting to like the MJ snippet..but...it works!!

Intl Space Station message - pretty cool to see!! How did U2 pull this one off? "The future needs a big Kiss" - prime product placement lads, Paddy Power!!

In a little while - I can take or leave, but tonight, I'm rediscovering the song

Unknown Caller - YEEES!! Dropped for 2 shows, I was worried they wouldn't play one of the best songs on the album...this was mesmerizing..the karaoke style screen displays of the lyrics are damn impressive.

The Claw REALLY comes to life now.

The Unforgettable fire - have never seen them play this tune live before...it was just epic..nice opening images too of Dublin.

COBL - the roofs come of the stands!! It starts raining now, but that doesn't stop Bono - cue Rain snippet!

Vertigo - the "Big Mac" of drum intros...audience going crazy

Crazy - superb graphics, great beats..audience digs it...I didn't think it would work...it does!! Go Larry on the Djembe!

SBS - This song and I have a love hate relationship..tonight, I liked it..claw looks amazing for it. Nice islamic intro.

Pride - 80,000 people singing Oh Oh Oh Oh...special

MLK - with several rings of Oh Oh Oh Oh from pride still in the air, an audible hush descends for this stunning solo song. It is haunting

Walk on - Dedicated to Aung San Suu Kyi...kids in masks...its not Holloween...I know its a cause, but drop it please....simply using the screen to display her plight is enough....nice rendition of Walk on though muscially...and as a Liverpool fan,nice to hear you'll never walk alone snippet, just so to annoy the Man Utd. Fans lol!

Tutu speech - mostly hilarious!! didn't cut the mood like I expected!

Steets...this tour's primary colour is red...thank god!! Croker explodes! Bono is in tears at the end of it.

One - couple of bum notes aside...classy as always

UV - glad this is back in the set! It rocks

WOWY - Note to band - drop, and drop very soon. Ok so it does provoke a mass singalong, but if Bono is going to sing it in a croaked whisper...stop doing it..end of

MOS - I have to confess, its not my favourite song on the album, but live - its beautiful..fitting end to the show.

and then that was that...leaving the stage to unrelenting cheers..the band are visibly touched and seem perhaps reluctant to leave...but they do...

So in summary, having seen the guys live on every tour since zoo tv...this is the big one..this is the tour to blow the others out of the water.

A couple of minor adjustments to the set list, this tour will go down in the annals of their history as perhaps their finest hour.

I for one, think last night is the best I have ever seen them.

Mark Fisher and Willie Williams have pulled off a feat of engineering and lighting genius..it will be hard to rival and they deserve much credit.

The claw does not overawe the show either, it augments it.

Having got on my my boots and being let into the sound, its like a drug, I need another hit, and fast, very very fast.

Miss this show at your peril!!




















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