Sunday, September 20, 2009

U2 in Toronto Sept 17

It's been a few days since seeing U2 on their 2nd night in Toronto and the night is still at the forefront of much of my thought and emotions. Here's a few quick impressions:

1. U2 still reach for the unreachable.
While you've always been able to feel the ache for the ineffable throughout U2's catalogue, their grasp for it really shines live.

In addition to the songs themselves carrying the crowd to another place, this year's tour features a lot of counting down clocks which bring dread, hope, contentment and the pace of life all into sharp focus at different times throughout the setlist. Watching the numbers flip is as much sobering as it is inspiring; and that's good art.

2. Spectacle is too often confused with entertainment
There is a fine line between being entertained and witnessing something spectacular and U2's stage setup was nothing short of spectacular. It was big and bright and shiny and loud and a wonder to behold all masked by smoke and surrounded in awe. It came alive when the sun went down.

If the band is coming through your town and you don't have tickets yet - scour your local craigslist and kijiji for somebody unfortunate enough to have to sell theirs. You won't be disappointed.

If you were at either of the two shows, I'd love to hear your take of things in the comments.


Cheryl said...

I had tickets to one TO show and ended up going to both. I cannot explain how I felt after this show. I have been to about 5 before this spanning over the years, but this tour was so good for me. I am older. I understand the value of loving a band (with original members even!) for over 2 decades. And the songs they played were just enough for me.

In fact, it was the first time I remember seeing "The Unforgettable Fire" live and I cried the first night.

Fortunately for me and unfortunately for my bank account, I will be seeing them definitely 2 more times next month. I want to try for more!

James Kingsley said...

twice more on this tour?! nicely done cheryl. je suis jealous.

Elle Pyke said...

Hey James. I was there the same night as you. I wrote about my expiration here ->
I liked your point on spectacle and entertainment, U2 by far entertained. ;)