Published today, 08:30
Singer Bono and guitarist The Edge in two different dimensions of the Globe.
From childhood to the refugee crisis. U2 continues to find new ways to think the arena show, with a bicameral concert that starts growing up in Dublin and ends with a bang in Syria – but it feels tacked on.
From childhood to the refugee crisis. U2 continues to find new ways to think the arena show, with a bicameral concert that starts in growing up Dublin and ends with a bang in Syria – but it feels tacked on.
On one level it is a fantastic welcoming show, that actually makes Globen to the smaller and more intimate arena that it portrayed as the hullabaloo surrounding U2′s current tour. Where mega band from Dublin then do not go around and playing on the biggest outdoor stadiums, but in – an order of magnitude smaller – indoor arenas.
Here they have stepped in and taken over almost all the stalls. A large stage is at one end, a tiny in the second, in between running a long scene where heavy especially Bono moves back and forth through the whole long concert. Above this scene tongue is a floor to be raised and lowered, which also serves as a giant screen – where band members can step into each video projection engines, and walk around in them. Sometime play the whole band in there.
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If you have a well-placed seat along one of the long sides, it is like getting the whole band up close, in a couple of different dimensions simultaneously. I just wonder how much of this spectacle to miss if you’re sitting at the short side. Or are among the parquet audience.
But it is clear U2 constantly trying to find new ways to think the arena show, this time also, when the aspirations of smaller scale.
Originally the idea was that they would make two concert evenings in the package, where the first “Innocence” -kvällen would be followed by a second “Experience” -evening. Like the last album “Songs of Innocence” would quickly be followed by a “Songs of Experience”.
No such album is not yet, and although the tour schedule has placed concerts in twos at each venue so these Both parts huddled so that they form a respective half of each concert.
The difference is quite big. “Innocence” part goes mainly back to childhood and adolescence, Bono sings of her longing for her mother who died when he was fourteen, wandering in childhood Cedarwood Road and plays guitar in the boys room beneath posters of Kraftwerk and The Clash.
It gives the songs from the latest album, a new anchor, they definitely grow in, but also makes U2 for the first time does not really feel like a band, but as Bono sings its own history . Which may be worth pausing at: with such a dominant frontman is actually somewhat miraculous that this has not happened before.
Then “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and the conflict in Northern Ireland, the tone darkens and the private toned down. Just have a Berlin Wall fell down, flipping forward scribbled flicker phrases, and so begins a long sojourn apart from the big stage, with nedstrippat drum and exhausted girl from the audience, before the still pianoplinket in “October” suddenly accompanied by bombed-out urban environments from Syria ( is it well?).
Then pull “Bullet The Blue Sky” in time, U2′s big krigsvansinneslåt, more noisy and chaotic and protracted than ever. Bono ghouls in megaphone, without seeming the least bit ironic. Somewhere, he ends up also in a fight with a younger self, who thinks he has become too rich to be involved in the revolution.
The end time be both hashtags for Refugees – AIDS campaigns, Stephen Hawking talk and Nelson Mandela quote, but it feels like someone glued placards show. It was this world like U2 got into, it is both fragmented and contradictory. But emergency. And no one can – all – do.
It’s not bad by a small rock band from Dublin to paint all this with just the same four members as always.