Irish rockers U2 wrapped up the second leg of the 360° Tour in Vancouver last night. It was the last full concert show for 2009 and brought out many emotions from a hugging U2 to a grateful Black Eyed Peas. The emotions became evident when an emotional Bono, who actually looked touched, paused to speak to the crowd about the end of the 2009 leg of the tour. He was also optimistic.
“Where are we going on the SkyTrain? Millennium Line. Expo Line. Canada Line.” Bono asked the crowd. The response started an evening of hysteria and excitement for the massive audience of 55,000. The band worked its way through more than two hours of songs from eight of their albums, including a majority of them from their latest No Line On The Horizon.
Although the response was strong on the newer tracks, it was the classics, like Sunday Bloody Sunday and I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, that got the crowd on its feet, including my audience mates for the evening, who came all the way from Cancun, Mexico to vacation around the show.
Vancouver’s set list was essentially the same as that played at the previous four concerts, including the Los Angeles show, which the band broadcast across the Internet. The only major addition was when Bono sang Happy Birthday to Bill Gates, who was in the audience.
Even U2 couldn’t defeat the bad sound of BC Place. The massive dome took another victim to loud distortion and poorly bounced sound. Although U2 performed well, you couldn’t truly tell from all the loud distortion. There was actually more distortion for this concert than there was for metal heads Slipknot, who performed at the Pacific Coliseum earlier this month.
If there’s one thing that remains true for any U2 show however, it is that you always leave with a sense that life in (insert your city name here) isn’t so bad. Even though British Columbia is currently faced with what could be described as the worst provincial government in its modern history and is facing what will be the largest constantly growing deficit in its history, at least we’re not in Burma under 20 years of house arrest like that of pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. In that sense, at least Gord Campbell is only taxing me to death and not stripping me of my life.
It is the band’s last full tour concert for 2009. However, U2 aren’t totally done for the year, as their appearances at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame’s 25th anniversary gig and at the Brandenburg Gate are still to come over the next week.
Opening act Black Eyed Peas were exciting to watch. Although their short set was littered with a majority of newer tracks, the performance was fun and it got the crowd pumped for U2. It should be noted that other than Fergie, the band seemed somewhat uncomfortable with the stadium sized show. Will I Am, did have a lot of crowd banter throughout, but his facial expressions showed someone who was taken by the large audience. Fergie’s performance of her solo hit Big Girls Don’t Cry was a standout. It was beautiful, brilliantly sung and seemed quite heartfelt.
U2 – BC Place – Vancouver, BC
Oct. 28, 2009
Vancouver Set List:
2. Get On Your Boots
4. Mysterious Ways
5. Beautiful Day / Blackbird (snippet)
6. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For / Stand By Me (snippet)
7. Happy Birthday
8. Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of
9. No Line On The Horizon
11. In A Little While
12. Unknown Caller
13. Until The End Of The World
14. The Unforgettable Fire
15. City Of Blinding Lights
17. I’ll Go Crazy If I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight / Two Tribes (snippet)
18. Sunday Bloody Sunday
20. Walk On / You’ll Never Walk Alone (snippet)
21. One / Amazing Grace (snippet)
22. Where The Streets Have No Name
23. Ultra Violet (Light My Way)
24. With Or Without You
25. Moment of Surrender
Review By Dan Savoie
Bono Photo: Kevin Mazur