And was really expecting some form of a retirement tour. One last go around the park. High-fives, and some reminiscing about the good ol’ times. That may be true, this might be their last tour. Honestly though, I felt great about paying the money to see the Irish blokes one last time. They are sort of a national treasure of rock music, and I jumped at the opportunity to go, fearing it may be my last. About a month before the date, news came that the show was postponed indefinitely on account that the lead singer hurt his back. “Of course”, I thought. I should of went last tour, they have gotten old and too banged up. Thats that. Now, fast forward a whole year. The show was back on!
I hadn’t done any research, nor read any reviews. I barely skipped over the greatest hits on the drive up. Even if I had, nothing could have prepared me for what I was about to experience. I took my seat and immediately thought two things. First, “Right this is a stadium tour”. The second, “WTF is this alien looking stage in the middle of the stadium?” I’m old enough now that a fair amount of skepticism accompanies me wherever I go. Unfortunately, even on a beautiful Saturday evening about to hear some great music with a cold beer in my hand. By the bottom of that beer, the stress of getting there, and the claustrophobia of the droves of people sitting around me had wore off. Twilight had set in over the stadium and the band took the stage. I honestly felt relieved when I saw that Bono wasn’t rolled out in a wheel-chair. Quite the contrary.
Over the next three hours, the spectacle before me reached out, grabbed my hand and pulled me through an experience like no other. The U2 360 tour isn’t just the marque summer rock show of our time, its an experience that compresses the last quarter century of your life into one evening. As with their music, the live show has the ability of connecting to its audience on a person by person basis, even in a stadium packed to capacity. The technology you experience has no reference. Even Steve Jobs would say, “Whoa, did u see that?!”. The music was performed flawlessly, with vigor and undulating passion. It felt as if they were a budding garage band trying to fight for the audience’s heart one song at a time. And as always with U2, the message is positive and profound. It may have been the massive laser beam that shot out from the middle of the stage straight up into the night sky during “Where the Streets Have no Name”, or the masses, all singing in unison and channeling some positive memory to that place at that time, but the vibe is inexplicably exalting.
You feel awake, alive and connected. The U2 360 tour has an almost medicinal quality where you’re soul feels heeled and restored. This was apparent as me and over sixty four thousand smiling people calmly and cooperatively left a single location that night to return to our families, homes, and lives… Ya, I think Bono’s sunglasses are lame too, but you know, U2 are trying to make a difference and for that I say, “Good on ya.”