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May 19th, 2006

niggles of the U2 kind... @ 03:02 pm

cabaiste84:
Current Location: my bedroom
I'm currently feelin: thirsty thirsty
I'm currently hearin: "Accidentally in love"- Counting Crows

G'day, g'day...

Ok, a couple of questions, if no-one minds:

Have any of you lovely people been to a U2 concert, which you felt completely let down and disappointed by? Like, say, had you been simply bursting out of your skin with anticipation months beforehand, but you found the actual show just didn't, for whatever reason, live up to your expectations?

I'm asking, because I'm *touch wood* going to see U2 when they come to New Zealand in November...as many of you know, they were originally going to play here in March, but, due to circumstances beyond their control, the concert was post-poned. I, of course, was rapt when I found out they were planning on playing here again later this year...but, I was told by a mate that U2 are, in his words, "notoriously rusty at the start of a tour". This time around, the last leg of the tour will begin in New Zealand, whereas, back in March they would have been nearing the end of the Vertigo tour, and would have been absolutely on-fire as a unit, which would have made for a mind-blowing concert. But, as they will be beginning in NZ, and if what my friend says is true, things will be completely different, and the concert may have the potential to be not as amazing as I may have anticipated. Do you follow me, so far?

It sounds absolutely ridiculous, I know...I reckon I've got way too much spare time, if I'm stressing over things like this, when goodness knows I have more pressing concerns. And, I've read posts and comments from those of you that have seen U2 live, and have talked to mates who have been to their gigs, and I gather that the shows have just been heart-stopping, and magical, and riveting and out of this world and just...guh. So really, I have every reason to still be excited.

But still, just wondering...are there any of you out there that have had a less-than-impressive U2 experience that you'd care to share? Have any of you been to a concert where everything that could have gone wrong did? Ever seen a show where the set-list was utter crap, and you were gutted that you didn't hear the songs you wanted to? Ever been to gig, where the band just seemed totally flat, and just lacked that typical U2 chemistry and magic, and just didn't function together well as a team? Ok, you get the idea...:P

Yeah, I'm probably worrying about nothing. Really, I'm more freaking excited than anything else...only 6 more months to go now *shuffles feet impatiently*

Also, another question....I feel so horrible asking this, but do any of you ever listened to HTDAAB, and felt kinda...blah? Don't get me wrong, I like it, and there are certain songs like Yahweh and City of Blinding Lights that really stand out. It's certainly got that unmistakable touch of U2 upon it, but to me it just lacks that U2 "PHHWWWOOOAAARRR" factor. And I especially noticed that *meh* feeling after listening to it at the library yesterday, after having spent the day blasting out The Joshua Tree and The Best of 1990-2000...and I know there are mixed views about the stuff they produced in the 90s, but I personally think that album is bliss.

So yeah, what are your thoughts on Atomic Bomb? *sigh* It's a lovely album, and I want to like it more...but I really don't think you can judge U2 by their recent material, when they've got an amazing almost-30-year-long legacy of music behind them, that is far superior, both lyrically and sonically.

Anyway, over to you...
 
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From:amerrydeath
Date:May 18th, 2006 10:52 am (UTC)
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In short, no. In my opinion, the best concerts for me were the two at the start of the tour and then one I saw in the later end of the tour. In the beginning they have the tendency to be trying harder, to be switching it up more often, and it makes for a more spontaneous and energetic show, IMO. The last show I saw, on December 7, was the least impressive out of all the shows I saw--the band seemed tired, the setlist was essentially the same they'd been doing for a while, and they just didn't connect with the audience as much as they did in the shows in May. So get excited!
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From:lydia_petze
Date:May 18th, 2006 11:06 am (UTC)
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They'll be fab, don't worry. Look on the bright side, they'll be rested, and this isn't *really* the start, it's more like it's been on hiatus.

I have tickets to Sydney. ROCK N ROOOOOOOLL!
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From:lydia_petze
Date:May 18th, 2006 11:08 am (UTC)
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Oh, and I found HTDAAB grew on me with repeat listening, as is usually the case. It didn't blow me away straight off, but as I started to get a handle on some of the songs...phwoar.
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From:cabaiste84
Date:May 18th, 2006 11:30 am (UTC)
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Hehe, lovin' the Edge and Bono icon! Man, they're adorable. :P
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From:boriel
Date:May 18th, 2006 11:55 am (UTC)
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i'm kind of blah over Bomb right now. it doesnt have the sizzle or pizazz that it had live. i could not believe how different the songs were when done in a live state, and finally understood for the first time what larry and edge meant when they said that 'u2 lives in live' Its really true. they have room to expand, change, experiment in the live format. i saw the shows at the beginning of the tour (vancouver 1) and the very last show (portland) and both were different than each other. neither was better, both were fantastic for energy, band cohesion and audience interaction... one was very spiritual and uplifting, the other a celebration of the band going home for christmas... both blew me away.

but i still find bomb somewhat blah (i think ive overplayed it)
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From:cabaiste84
Date:May 20th, 2006 01:30 am (UTC)
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i could not believe how different the songs were when done in a live state, and finally understood for the first time what larry and edge meant when they said that 'u2 lives in live' Its really true.

Uh-huh. I've got the Rattle and Hum album (which I listen to about 3 times a day at the moment! :P), and I'm always blown away by the live versions of songs like I still haven't found what I'm looking for and Bullet the Blue Sky. I went back and listened to the album versions of those songs...and while they're still awesome, they're not half as powerful or magical as the live versions. And, geez, if a live recording on a CD sounds incredible, then I can only imagine what it will be like actually being in the same room as them, and hearing them play...*brain explodes*

one was very spiritual and uplifting, the other a celebration of the band going home for christmas... both blew me away.

Awesome...so very jealous. :P Arrrrgghh, November, where are you?! *looks around wildly*
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From:volare
Date:May 18th, 2006 01:05 pm (UTC)

first leg boston, after the ticket fracas.

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the 5/25/05 show ...my first ever after some 20-odd years of being a fan, and it was right after some idiot bitch had jumped on the B-man and made him hurt his back and he really obviously wasn't feeling well; can't blame him for it... it was a short show and for whatever curse of the gods they didn't end up playing a single one of the songs I most wanted to hear...
which was okay with me until 5/28 which I did not have tickets to and they proceeded to play all of them in one night. I could've jumped off a bridge at that point, damn.

('course i'm feeling much better now after some help from smurphy487... *MWAH* love and scotch and hugh laurie to ya ;)... )
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From:cabaiste84
Date:May 20th, 2006 04:31 am (UTC)

Re: first leg boston, after the ticket fracas.

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Someone jumped on Bono?! Poor guy! What the heck was up with that? I mean, yes, our B-dawg is indeed very jumpable, but still...*shakes head*

What's the whole story with that?

Did you get to see another show after that? And you've actually met the guys, yes?!

Hugh Laurie= teh yum. :P
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From:zoostation
Date:May 18th, 2006 01:31 pm (UTC)
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I think the problem is that U2 fans hype up U2 Live shows waaaay too much. There are definitely amazing moments throughout the show, like ISHFWILF and WTSHNN being near...church like, I guess. But you can't forget it's just a rock show. If you put on a pedastal, you're going to be disappointed.

As far as HTDAAB, the blah is pretty much how the album truly feels to you. I mean, over a year later and Vertigo is not as "rockin'" as you once thought it was. Perhaps in 10 years or so, you can look back at the album and find it's strengths to overpower this "HTDAAB Overload" because you can see how they've grown from that record.
I'm sure people found Achtung Baby "blah" in 1993, before Zooropa was released. It just takes some aging.
Aha, perfect similie!
    When a U2 album is released, it's like grape juice, freshly squeezed. It tastes delicious but at the same time, reaaaaally sweet. After a while, the sweet becomes too sweet and it loses it's sweetness. Put it in the back corner for a few years (bear with me here ;) and it becomes a fine wine. Aged to...well...near perfection.
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From:raptoe
Date:May 18th, 2006 02:38 pm (UTC)
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I think every "part" of the tour has it charms..
In the beginning they are hyped up, the middle they finally got most small things down and made some setlist changes and in the end they are perhaps more tired but also more secure in their performance.

At least that's what my collague just explained me
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From:willow42
Date:May 18th, 2006 02:58 pm (UTC)
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ok to answer your first question... U2 is amazing no matter what. I went to the vertigo tour in may last year, when it was around here in philly. Bono was sick, he didn't feel well at all, and the show was lacking the tiniest bit of pazazz and it was still amazing. I mean, I brought a newly converted U2 fan with me and a non-U2 fan(suprisingly because the girl that was supposed to have the ticket was sick and we couldn't find anyone else to go last minute...me I woulda jumped at it sick or not.). I was only sad because they didn't get to experiance the explosion of U2, but they still said it was great and couldn't imagine it being better...and me? Just being in the same room wih them hearing anything just made my year! The newly converted fan said she almost had a mental breakdown because she saw bono come out and hear the music start and she didn't know what to do with herself, haha...I hope that answers your question!!!

as for the HTDAAB...I thought it was lacking the umph too, same with ATYCLB...but it's ok, because they are U2 and they are forgiven. HTDAAB just didn't turn out like they were describing, edge had described it a while ago as being very raw rock and roll, almost country like...I'm not hearing that, I was pysiked!!! and then disappointed, I'm just not going to listen to them describe their albums anymore...hahaha...

sorry if this sounds jumbled i was up early and about to go to work!!! yucky!
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From:wolfp10
Date:May 18th, 2006 03:44 pm (UTC)
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I was at the October Pittsburgh show, and while it was a good show, it appeared U2 wasn't really trying that hard. To me it just felt like they ran through the setlist, nothing special.

The other two shows on this tour I saw, Boston in May and Hartford in December, were absolutely incredible.
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From:sirensong984
Date:May 18th, 2006 04:05 pm (UTC)
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Hmm. I don't like the album that much. I was hyped for it when I first heard Vertigo, but I've grown tired of that song..I hardly ever listen to it now, which makes me a bit sad. I listen to almost every other U2 album more often.. anyway. That's just my opinion.

I saw 2 Vertigo shows, one at the beginning and one toward the end.. the second was better, I thought.

I have seen bad shows. I've seen great shows. It just depends on their moods, I suppose.. they're human and probably have bad days at work just like we do. I wouldn't worry, though, I'd just go. I've found that my problems come when I see too many shows. I've decided to keep it at a minimum from now on. I got burned out on Elevation, I think, as Popmart and Vertigo were just 2 shows each for me, and I was more 'surprised' I suppose.

In short, go! Nothing terrible will happen, I can't imagine you'll be disappointed with just one show...and even the bad U2 shows were better than anything I've ever seen.
From:vintagefuck
Date:May 18th, 2006 04:12 pm (UTC)
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I think it depends- they were extremely tired when I saw them and when they were at the Grammys, Bono's voice sounded on the verge of death. However, they still managed to live up to my expectations and I came home happy.
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From:oddangel
Date:May 18th, 2006 05:36 pm (UTC)
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Yup. At Portland, the last show on their US Vertigo tour, they seemed to have less intense energy than when I saw them several months earlier in Seattle, but it was still a great show. No regrets.

(Btw, great icon. It's from MYAEWK, right? I absolutely *heart* that film.)
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From:valkyrie_lisa
Date:May 18th, 2006 06:23 pm (UTC)
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I've been to two U2 concerts (ZooTV & Elevation), and both were astounding! I was a bit disappointed in a couple of the opening acts, but that was it. I promise you, you will not be disappointed. Unless, of course, you expect to be ravished on stage by the whole band. That probably won't happen. ;)
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From:cabaiste84
Date:May 20th, 2006 01:36 am (UTC)
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Unless, of course, you expect to be ravished on stage by the whole band. That probably won't happen. ;)

Hehe, wouldn't that be nice! :p I do wonder if Bono will get anyone out of the audience to dance with him on stage this time...he has done that in the past! I always fantasise about it being me, of course, but since I'll be up in the stands, it's not looking likely. :p Still, dreams are free...
 
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From:hew_
Date:May 18th, 2006 06:36 pm (UTC)
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The first show in Buenos Aires was kind of a let down for me, but it wasn't really the band's fault. The crowd over here alywas goes CRAZY, and it's insane. I was in GA and I couldn't breathe because of the amount of people and because of how much they were pulling and shoving.
And also, Bono's connection with the audience was much less than with the Houston crowd.

Houston was AMAZING, though!! Like seriously wonderful.
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From:canadanne
Date:May 18th, 2006 07:23 pm (UTC)
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Yes, my first U2 show was devastatingly depressing. But my second and third U2 shows were the best experience of my life, so I've known both ends of the spectrum. If it helps, the outdoor Vertigo show is mindblowingly good, so unless you have awful seats or something, you're probably going to love it!

Can't empathise on the HTDAAB thing though, it's my second favourite U2 album ever and I can't imagine what's not to love about it!
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From:cabaiste84
Date:May 20th, 2006 01:47 am (UTC)
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Yes, my first U2 show was devastatingly depressing.

How so? What made it such a let-down for you?

If it helps, the outdoor Vertigo show is mindblowingly good, so unless you have awful seats or something, you're probably going to love it!

Yeah, I am a touch worried about seating...I know we're up in the stands, but I'm not sure exactly where, and what our view is going to look like. I'm pretty sure that my Dad managed to get in early with getting our tickets (got them from him for Christmas), and they were quite expensive, so that's a good sign. Also, I've been to two gigs at Ericson Stadium, and it's a very good venue, so that's a bonus. :)

Can't empathise on the HTDAAB thing though, it's my second favourite U2 album ever and I can't imagine what's not to love about it!

Hmmm...I think I just need to listen to it a bit more, and take some more time to appreciate it. It's not that I don't think it's a good album per se, just that it's definitely not as good as their previous work...but that's cool.

What's your number 1 favourite album then?!
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From:shardofnarsil
Date:May 18th, 2006 07:39 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, I saw U2 in Dublin back in '93; I think it was the second to last show of the Zooropa tour. I was in Ireland, with my friends, seeing U2, so I thought there was no way I could be let down. Well, I was. For some reason, the show didn't have the spark that I anticipated. A lot of the Zooropa songs didn't translate well live, and I HATED that Macphisto deal Bono insisted on doing. Everything else about the experience was great, but the show itself wasn't as fantastic as I built it up to be. Don't fret, though - you will have a brilliant time!!!!

I'm with ya on HTDAAB. It's good, but not my favorite album by far. Give me some Joshua Tree or War!!! :o)

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