Sunday, July 24, 2011

U2 Magnificent!

Bono waves to the fans below
Magnificent is the only word that comes to mind when describing last night's outdoor U2 concert at the University of Minnesota's TCF stadium. Having already experienced the U2 360° Tour at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland back at the start of the tour in 2009, I thought it would be an interesting experience to get General Admission tickets and attempt to get close up to the  spaceship/claw-like stage. I had to wait over a year to use these tickets as last year's concert was postponed due to Bono's back surgery. Well, it was worth the wait and we certainly got up close—smashed into 8 sweaty, standing-room-only rows from the front of the main stage and two rows from the catwalk stage behind us. We were inside the Inner Circle!

Inside the Inner Circle stage
Storms skirted around the stadium and cooled us off with gusts of cool air while the opening band Interpol rocked the crowd. By the time U2 took the stage, 60,000 fans were crammed into the stadium; so far the storms were holding off. The massive spaceship stage lit up and the 360° screen revolved with images of U2 walking onto the stage. The place exploded when Bono strode up to his mike and belted out Even Better Than the Real Thing. And it was even better! Such an amazing encounter being so close to U2 during the performance. The lights, smoke, music, stage, Bono, and crowd all interacting together really was unforgettable.

Bono and Adam
The Claw stage includes a catwalk stage that loops around the Inner Circle audience (where I was standing), and the band accesses it by one of two bridges that are on wheels that move over the crowd. At one point during Mysterious Ways, Bono and The Edge sang and played on the catwalk stage directly behind me. I felt like I could just reach out and touch them. The moment was electrifying!

Adam in the deluge
What made this show even more memorable was the rain. It started as a sprinkle halfway into the show and grew to a deluge that soaked everyone including the band. But U2 went on without a single pause. They played their guitars and sang in the pouring rain while we screamed along with them. Adam  Clayton stripped off his soaked shirt and played his bass bare-chested. We were amazed at how they could play their guitars so perfectly in the pouring rain. The experience was amplified by the fireworks going off at the nearby Aquatennial, the constant pouring rain, and the lightening illuminating the sky. A surreal experience that I will never, ever forget. Best of all I got to live this with my husband and our next-door neighbors . . . Jen and Greg thank you for sharing this with us!
Soaked but still smiling

I've attached links to reviews of this show if you'd like more details as well as my short snippet of video. The set list is in the first link. For those of you who haven't yet experienced the U2 360° Tour, you really missed out as only two shows remain. Given the energy level of Bono and the boys, I have no doubt that they will be back with another album and spectacular tour. I intend on finding myself inside the Inner Circle for that concert as well!

Bono Singing In the Rain


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