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by Brandon

The energy level the whole evening was incredible, and they were TIGHT, folks. I am looking forward to seeing them again in Montreal and perhaps at Slane. If you are interested in putting together a group from Northern California to head to Slane, contact me at breckenb@hotmail.com.

I felt very fortunate to be there for both the first night of "Kite" and the first touch-down of a Zooropa song on US soil, "Stay."

The arena did not fill up very quickly -- we got there at 7:10 before a 7:30 start.. We took our positions near the tip of the heart, slightly off-set to the right, about 3 "rows" back. We were 12 feet from Bono most of the evening. This was the perfect position, as most of the action took place out toward the tip of the heart -- I was amazed that we were able to get that close for being so late. Being inside the heart might have been better, but for not having to wait 3-5 hours to get those spots, we did well.

I thought PJ was awesome. I felt bad because of a few galoots yelling "We want Bono -- get off the f*ckin' stage!" during several of the pauses between songs. Whatever. I went away impressed and ready to give her back catalog a listen.

The arena really began to fill up around 8, and the boys eventually came out with the house lights blazing, as usual.

Highlights from their set:

1. ...and this goes to the energy of the evening... The 18,000 backup singers -- I was absolutely amazed at the number of people there who sang along to damn near the entire setlist.

2. Edge the toreador and Bono the bull out on the dripping end of the heart.

3. The whole "encore set" -- from giving the finger to Moses.. ahem, Charlton Heston, through the emotional climax of WOWY, Pride, One, Walk On.. was truly inspiring and transcendant.

The only low-light of the evening came after Sunday Bloody Sunday, when Bono had someone toss down the Irish tri-color from the upper deck behind the stage. He then took it out to the tip of the heart, along with a Union Jack from somebody in front of us. After finishing the song, he lobbed the flags right at us. A 10-minute scrum ensued -- a pushing, shoving, tug-of-war took place over the flags. Very ugly irony there, but hey. Much aloha to most of the rest of the folks around us crammed in near the front...

This tour is THAT amazing -- all of my mixed feelings after Popmart have been erased -- you must go, and go again. I will be paying scalper prices the rest of the way (thanks for these tickets, Propaganda, you really came through), but it will be worth it.

My attempt at writing a semi-objective, dispassionate review has failed miserably.

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