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U2 Tours (formerly part of AtU2): A Comprehensive Guide To U2’s Live Performance History
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by Anna

Of all the U2 shows I've seen this was one of the most energetic. Little surprises now and then - I Will Follow, of course, and All I Want Is You (which was the musical highlight for me, as it is one of my favourite songs and it's just phenomenal live) - and very intense vibe from the band that bordered on near-hysterical at times. I have a feeling that U2's happiness at returning 'home' to New York City has been tarnished by a patina of fury over the recent terrorist threats, as evidenced by Bono's defiant attitude during certain songs - Sunday Bloody Sunday's 'This is your song now!' and 'No-one gets out of here unless they're alive,' during Vertigo. The whole show seemed like a gigantic "F*** YOU!" to those who would threaten the city, from both U2 and all the fans who still turned up in spite of it all - and the weather!

As with most U2 shows, anger seems to make the performances stand out. As Bono said, 'it's really goin' off here in the Garden,' and it was. The only explosions at Penn Station this weekend was U2 blowing the roof off the place, and dismantling the real terror - fear - by replacing it with pure, unadulterated joy.

Is it just me, or is Fast Cars quickly becoming one of their best live songs? Bono still introduces it saying that 'No-one knows this song, but us,' and hopefully he's realised by now that when 30,000 people sing along with the song we're not supposed to know, the secret is out, buddy. I hope they keep it in the set list.

Original of the Species was a wonderful surprise, as was Wild Horses. Mary J Blige onstage for One turned the arena into a celebration, and the song into a wild gospel number. Homegirl can sing (though homeboy had a little trouble matching vocals for the harmonies). Edge had a few little guitar glitches, during The First Time (which was amusing, as he gave us the 'Hang on a minute' signal and proceeded to tune up) and then on Wild Horses. Bono: "That's real professional, The Edge."

Great concert. Great city. Great band. If this is what the beginning of their New York residency is like, I can only imagine what the end of it will bring.

(An aside: if anyone has photos from this show, especially from the ellipse or outer rail, and during Love and Peace, please contact me! Thanks!)

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