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by Lance Longwell and friends

U2 opened the show in style, again emerging from the audience just as they did in Las Vegas and San Diego. The stage and light show was as impressive as it was the first time: an amazing visual experience. However, the weather was bitterly cold. A stiff breeze picked up throughout the show, but no rain or snow (as was predicted).

The highlight of the show was during Pride (In The Name of Love), Bono slowed the band down and spoke to the audience about the election in England. He said, that England had just elected a new Prime Minister. He said that it's going to take a lot of hard work to solve the problems in the North, but he wishes Blair luck! Bono's tone was optimistic about the future. The headline on this morning paper was "Blair, Labor win in Landslide" and "U2 puts a new shine on oldies at Mile High".

After I Will Follow, Bono commented on how out of breath he was from the altitude and said he didn't know how we could do it. "There's no air!" Then during I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For, Bono rewrote and reworked a verse of lyrics to talk about the Denver weather. I forgot exactly what he said, but it was something to the extent that it was so damn cold.

During his first address to the audience after Even Better Than the Real Thing, he spoke about his experiences in Denver. He talked about how damn cold it was. He talked about how we were expecting snow. Mentioned how it rained during '83 at Red Rocks, snow during November when Rattle & Hum was filmed at McNichols, and rainy last time they were here. He said, "We came here in '83 and it rained...tonight they're talking about snow. What's wrong with you people?" There's always bad weather in Denver for a U2 show....something you can count on.

During Miami, he reworked the lyrics to say, "I love the place where the shine doesn't shine at all" while pointing to the Denver sky.

Until the End of the World was also another treat. The song just went on and on and on...I didn't think the Edge would ever stop playing!

Finally, during One, Bono thanked Rage Against The Machine for being their opening band. He said, "Thank you Rage, we're one, but we're not the same." He said a few other things about them.

Now, my complaints about the show. The concert people "re-sectioned" the floor. Basically, they eliminated A1, A5, and A6. They then added an A7, A8 right behind A3/A4. This moved B all the way to the back. So people who were originally in the front of A5, got moved to the middle of the arena. People generally took it well, but there were some complaints. However, the reissued tickets had the following notice accompanying them, "As you probably know the U2 Pop Mart Tour opened last Friday in Las Vegas. Due to the massive production, the biggest in history of touring, we discovered that certain seats while fairly close to the stage, did not afford the ticket holder a chance to see and enjoy the entire show in the manner we had hoped, therefore, in order to have everyone enjoy the entire concert experience, we are relocating certain sections on the field. Let us assure you that your relocated seat will be a better one than the one you held, regardless of the location." An interesting note, however, I don't know whether this would have been the case. I'm not entirely convinced. So, my experience is, your seats aren't guaranteed until you're in them. They can be changed at the last minute.

The band was red hot! They played magnificently! The rhythm section was out of control. Adam and Larry were very tight. However, because of the cold or apathy, the audience really wasn't into most of the tour. Sometimes they were even sitting down in their chairs. The old classics from Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby, and Unforgettable Fire got the house rocking, but the audience didn't seem too familiar with the new songs.

For merchandise, new to the Denver show was U2 condoms! 2 yellow condoms in a PopMart package for $5. They didn't have these in Las Vegas.

My personal opinion was that the band has been getting better. The kinks have been worked out. The transition with the lemon is much smoother. The transitions between songs are smoother. I personally found the Denver show to be superior to the Vegas show (however there was more energy in Vegas)! It was a real treat for Bono to let his guard down and talk about the elections in England and troubles in Ireland. This was the highlight of the show!

My overall rating, I'd give the Denver show 4 1/2 stars out of 5 stars!

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