June 29, 2011

U2360: East Lansing report and Exclusive Photos

It seemed that the spirit of U2 passed through everyone who was at this show, including the amazing folks at Buzz Click Photography and the local Michigan U2 Tribute band, Zooropa, who were kind enough to give AllU2 their exclusive pictures from the show along with a write up.

I was at the show, too and will post my personal thoughts in a separate post. Until then, here is the review courtesy of Spike at Buzz Click Photography, along with a few of his pictures, followed by pictures from Jennifer McNeely and Zooropa. 

Even Better Than The Real Thing
The Fly
Mysterious Ways
Until The End of The World
I Will Follow
Get On Your Boots
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking for
Beautiful Day
Miss Sarajevo
City of Blinding Lights
Crazy Remix/Discotheque
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Walk On

Where The Streets Have No Name

Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me
With Or Without You
Moment of Surrender

On Sunday night, June 26, the biggest rock band in the world brought the massive rock show to Southeast Michigan.  The stadium-sized spectacle of U2's "360 Tour" may very well be the biggest show on Earth.  It's certainly the largest stage with its 167-foot-high, 29,000-square-foot, four-legged superstructure known as The Claw, which could be seen for miles, peeking out from atop the stadium walls.  The stage that was too big to fit in any Detroit venue, proved to be too big for even East Lansing as several concrete walls had to be knocked out to accommodate the stage once it arrived last week.

It was a show more than three years in the making after the original 2010 date was scrapped as Bono recovered from back surgery.  And the band did not disappoint those who waited for them:  U2 started the show with four songs from their hit album "Achtung Baby," which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.  What followed was a 23-sing greatest hits concert, from their first album in 1980 to their most recent "No Line On The Horizon."  

Bono played to the crowd early with a “Go green, go white!” chant for the Michigan State University crowd and added that the Edge wants to buy a small cabin on Lake Michigan.   Carrying through the night with “With Or Without You,” "Elevation," “One” and “Vertigo,” drummer Larry Mullen, guitarist The Edge and bass player Adam Clayton created a wall of sound that shook the rafters of Spartan stadium while Bono led the crowd in many sing-alongs.  For over two hours, the ever-impressive 54-ton video screen expanded to the floor of the stage, lighting the stadium with a spectrum of colors.  

The 360 degree open stage gave every fan in the 65,000-plus Spartan Stadium crowd a great view.  All four members of the band walked the ramps and catwalks to give this immense show a feel of intimacy as fans scrambled for their cell phones to capture the up-close-and-personal moments.  This 360° tour passed the Rolling Stones weeks ago to become the most successful tour in music history.  With a month of dates left on this two year tour, U2 is on its way to an expected $700 million total gross.

Bono paid tribute to the late Clarence Clemons twice during the night and dedicated a song to U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who is recovering from brain injuries due to a gun attack.  Giffords husband - and space shuttle astronaut - Mark Kelly appeared on the video screens to recite a verse of U2's "Beautiful Day," which he recorded in outer space.

Also in attendance at the concert was 82 year old George Scofes.  Back in 1981, Scofes booked the up-and-coming Irish band to play Dooley's Pub in East Lansing (now Harper's Restaurant and Brewpub).  Bono gave Dooley's a shout-out from the stage.  Thirty years later, U2 proved it still knows how to rock East Lansing.

Credit (and special thanks) to Jennifer McNeely for these pictures!

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