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U2 Tours (formerly part of AtU2): A Comprehensive Guide To U2’s Live Performance History
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by pete242

It seems that bands touring and playing their entire album in order, is something that has been around for awhile. I never thought U2 would be one of those bands that would step back and do it, but low and behold, they did it with their most famous record The Joshua Tree. It is not even my favorite of theirs, but I still do like a lot of songs from it. Having said all that, the only reason I wanted to attend this show was because, I would get to hear quite a few songs live that I never have from this album.

So day of the show itself, had GAs, no real issues getting in, managed to find a decent spot on the floor. The Lumineers were a nice opener, they aren't exactly great for a stadium, but I don't think any band out there would turn down this opportunity. According to set times, U2 was supposed to hit the stage around 8:30. Well time goes by, the roof is still closed, and it is very muggy inside. Then a miracle! the roof starts to open, and this breath of fresh air from the overcast above comes down on us, the stadium was loving it, best feeling all day.

The band finally hits the stage at 9:10! what a late start. It was rather strange beginning, just Larry comes up from behind the stage, and we're saying oh ok we can start now! but he gets to his drum kit too early I think and waits for the intro music to finish, which felt pretty awkward as he looked to be ready for ages. Anyways I won't bore with the details of the songs since we know how they all go here. They were performed as well I think the band is capable of performing them at this stage in their careers. I did keep reading various reviews here and there, that the band looks like they are going through the motions on this tour, not vibing etc. It did look a bit evident up there. The screen was likely the coolest thing about this show, and sometimes I was watching more of that, then the actual band themselves. Even though I had GAs I felt more distant from them, than I ever have. So overall, wasn't a fan of the stage setup for this tour.

The start of the encore of Miss Sarajevo is a bad idea, I don't know why they think they should keep doing this. It was great to hear One Tree Hill finally, but Bono kept going on and on about Leonard Cohen all night. We get it, you miss the guy, but this is a U2 show, not a tribute show to him. Also at times Bono kept acting like a preacher like he wants more money from us. We pay enough to come see you, allocate your earnings accordingly. They can't tell me this group hasn't made their money by now. Even though we had enough room to stand around, I felt this was the worst fan experience I've ever had for any U2 show. At points there was a girl behind me singing from Bad on towards Bullet The Blue Sky because after that she didn't know any of the songs, which saved this from being a bad night for me. Her singing drowned out me hearing the band at times, plus her and her bf were passionately making out during WOWY, thankfully I didn't see or hear much of them after Bullet. Many other fans around us spent too much time taking selfies or getting beers.

The rest of the encore did pick up well, and just as they did in their SNL appearance for 2004 before the show closed, they gave the unexpected encore of playing I will follow. The sad part about this show was, the most recent song they played was as of 2004. Which leads me to believe, that the band is not that confident with their last 2 albums worth of material. They did the same for us here, which ended the show on an energetic note. Despite my earlier rants, I still did enjoy the show, but this will be my last U2 show in a stadium. It just doesn't work, especially at the Rogers Centre. So please just keep it to arenas from now on, because you're still an amazing band in arena tours.

I wait for the next album Songs Of Experience, perhaps it will take us back on that musical journey that we know this band can always send us on.

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