Axver (axver) wrote,

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Too many spoilers are not enough!

First order of business today is the setlist for U2's show. The most important and fascinating element in my opinion, and here is tonight's set, already memorised, complete with snippets and notes (the lengths of time between performances for the rarities exclude the rehearsal appearances on the 26th):

City Of Blinding Lights
Fantastic choice as an opener. One gets the feeling the band want to return to the epic openers of the Joshua Tree Tour that was characterised in Where The Streets Have No Name, the best opener ever. I need to hear COBL before I can really judge it, but I suspect it will come fourth in my list of best openers ever. The top three, in order, are: Where The Streets Have No Name, 11 O'clock Tick Tock, Hawkmoon 269.
Vertigo / Stories For Boys (snippet)
This was played much later in the rehearsal and apparently the band weren't happy, so they pushed it up. I'm honestly not surprised. I love the Stories For Boys snippet - it was the second album track that U2 cut from their sets, Shadows And Tall Trees being the first. This was the first time Stories For Boys appeared in any form at a U2 concert for 23 years and a day.
The Cry/The Electric Co. (with Send In The Clowns as a snippet)
If you don't know, THE ELECTRIC CO.! I am overjoyed this has returned - I can't believe it! The Electric Co. hasn't been played live in 17 years, 7 months, and 25 days, and The Cry, its famous opening companion heard on Under A Blood Red Sky, hadn't been used in 19 years, 8 months, and 21 days. Indeed, The Cry didn't even feature in the rehearsal.
An Cat Dubh (with I Can See For Miles as a snippet)/Into The Heart
The band are going to be fairly hard-pressed to ever top this return. I swear, I never thought this would return. Last year, I joked that if I were ever pulled on stage to play guitar at a U2 show, I'd break out in An Cat Dubh, smirk at Bono, and ask if he remembered it. This is the first time this song has been played in 20 years, 6 months, and 4 days. Wow, I cannot wait to hear this one live!
Beautiful Day / Blackbird (snippet)
Back to a newer one, and one of U2's best known tracks to follow a sequence of rarities. Great choice, as some of the more casual fan crowd may have wandering minds at this point.
New Year's Day
Back to the older material again, and this time U2's first smash hit, the epic New Year's Day. This track has aged incredibly well and lives on for yet another tour.
Miracle Drug
Finally, we're back to material from the new album after a long run of older songs. Very unusual for a U2 tour; almost the opposite of ZooTV!
Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own
Following Miracle Drug, this really is a major emotional 1-2 punch.
Love And Peace Or Else
Not so sure about it coming after SYCMIOYO, but it's the first song in a series of three that is nothing short of brilliant. And Bono plays drums along with Larry at the end!
Sunday Bloody Sunday
The second song of the series. I just hope it sounds better than it did on Elevation.
Bullet The Blue Sky / The Hands That Built America (snippet) / When Johnny Comes Marching Home (snippet)
The third song - and talk about a politically intense series of three! Wow, that must have been powerful. Brilliant order, I must say. Nothing quite like U2 rocking out in a political manner. Some interesting snippets during Bullet - and apparently Bono blindfolded himself too!
Running To Stand Still / Hallelujah (snippet)
Now here's a glorious return, a classic that hasn't been played for 11 years, 3 months, and 18 days. Gem of a song and I am so glad it is back, complete with the Joshua Tree Tour's piano and ZooTV's Hallelujah.
Zoo Station
When this was first rumoured, I totally did not believe it. Zoo Station is a product of its time, forever a part of ZooTV, never coming back - that's why I'm so shocked that it has! Absolutely awesome. U2 are still looking forward, "ready for what's next".
The Fly
After it was cut from the Elevation set and Edge said he didn't think it wasn't good enough to make the Best Of, I didn't think this one was coming back, so I'm really glad it has!
Again, didn't think this one was coming back, as I felt - still feel - it's unnecessary due to Vertigo and All Because Of You. But it sounds like it's a great deal of fun live so I can't wait to be there! And apparently Larry does backing vocals, which should be awesome.
Encore break
Dah dah dah ...
Pride (In The Name Of Love)
The only song I'm a bit disappointed to see included as it has always been weaker live, though I know if I were there, I'd be belting out "in the naaaaaaame of loooooooove" and having the time of my life.
Where The Streets Have No Name
Plain bizarre placement. The flow from Running To Stand Still on ZooTV was magic. The flow from Please on Popmart was magic. The flow from All I Want Is You or Bad (depending on the night) on Elevation was magic. Let's hope this is a rare occurrence and the band continue the pattern of flowing songs into Streets - it's absolutely one of the best things they do, and magic to hear.
Saw it coming. Nothing notable, really.
All Because Of You
Much later in the setlist, but hey, it works. And Bono on tambourine! Ha, that's going to be grand to watch.
Larry on keyboard! The band really have been expanding what they play, heh. Apparently it was a toned-down, more 'acoustic' version, which I find surprising considering its setlist position.
Indisputably the ultimate closer. Enough said.

What an amazing setlist! I am so impressed, and I can't wait to see how it changes from night to night. Bring on the second show. To recap:

1. City Of Blinding Lights
2. Vertigo / Stories For Boys (snippet)
3. The Cry
4. The Electric Co. / Send In The Clowns (snippet)
5. An Cat Dubh / I Can See For Miles (snippet)
6. Into The Heart
7. Beautiful Day / Blackbird (snippet)
8. New Year's Day
9. Miracle Drug
10. Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own
11. Love And Peace Or Else
12. Sunday Bloody Sunday
13. Bullet The Blue Sky / The Hands That Built America (snippet) / When Johnny Comes Marching Home (snippet)
14. Running To Stand Still / Hallelujah (snippet)
15. Zoo Station
16. The Fly
17. Elevation

18. Pride (In The Name Of Love)
19. Where The Streets Have No Name
20. One
21. All Because Of You
22. Yahweh
23. 40

Album representation, excluding snippets
Boy: 3
Boy-era: 1 (The Cry)
October: 0
War: 3
The Unforgettable Fire: 1
The Joshua Tree: 3
Rattle And Hum: 0
Achtung Baby: 3
Zooropa: 0
Pop: 0
All That You Can't Leave Behind: 2
How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb: 7

That's a beautiful set with great era representation - the new stuff and the classics. Great job, U2!

Also, the pictures from the show are very impressive. I'm glad the stage is spare and uncluttered, and the lighting seems to be used very effectively and powerfully. Looks like the music is very much the primary focus, just the way I like it. ZooTV and Popmart were fantastic concepts, but I'm going to a rock concert, not a lighting and visuals display. This tour is already incredibly exciting, and I don't have the first bootleg yet!
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