where the seats have no name (3)

We saw the boyz in Chicago last night. Definitely the best U2 show I've ever seen if not flat-out the best concert ever. I'm not sure how they keep this up well into their 40s, but they played for almost 2 1/2 hours straight with two very short breaks. And nearly every song was so full of adrenaline that I felt exhausted by the end of the show. So I can't even imagine what they must feel like.

I'm sure part of the reason the concert was so good is that we were only four people from the loop. We lined up at about 3:30p. Gates opened at 5:45. Kings of Leon went on around 7. They weren't too good, but it was enough to get everyone ready. The funny thing is that the interlude music between KoL and U2 featured some favs from Interpol, Modest Mouse, Bowie, The Who, and finally, just before U2 made it on stage, Arcade Fire's "Wake Up." I had no idea there was such a following. But practically the whole arena was singing in unison before U2 even took the stage.

I guess they were taping the show (hopefully for a future CD/DVD) and the Chicago crew manager came out to let us know that before they started. I think he got his point across because the crowd was so loud at some points that I could barely hear Bono singing. Early on, we were a little nervous because he had a "frog in his throat" which forced him away from the mic during Elevation (3rd song). He couldn't do those really high whoo-hoos, so he just held his hands out apologetically to the crowd and we belted it out sufficiently. After that, however, he seemed to get stronger.

He had a lot to say about a lot of stuff. I hope that it all gets included if they do make a DVD. Much of it focused on Africa and the One Campaign, the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, and the need for Chicago (as Bono's favorite American town, he says) to take the lead in voting for change. He wasn't explicit about what that means, but as F-14s flew behind him on the screen shortly afterwards, you got the point.

I'm continually amazed by U2's ability to blend politics, church, ideology, and great music together for close to 3 decades now.

I'm also continually amazed by how bad my camera is. It doesn't take when you press the button, it won't focus correctly, and it's low-light functioning is terrible. So these three shots really are the best I got even from 4 people back.

But it doesn't matter, really. The pictures never convey what it was like to be there. Simply the best concert I've ever even hoped to see. I'm going to be hoarse for days. And probably near-deaf for weeks.

The take away message is: buy some tix. Try to get G.A. Line up early. Good stuff.



Blogger yomama said...

happy for you-
but very very envious...

5/10/2005 12:26 PM  
Blogger John McCollum said...

Glad you could go. Hope you had some good spouse time over the weekend.

5/10/2005 5:58 PM  

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