Friday, October 2, 2009

U2's 360 Tour with Muse

I went to the U2 360 tour last night in Charlottesville's at the University of Virginia's Scott Stadium. I'd only seen U2 perform in London at Live 8 in 2005, so I did not want to miss the opportunity to see them play so close to home.

I wasn't on the floor (where Bono mentioned that ticket sales went to benefit AIDS medicine in Africa), but my tickets in the upper level weren't all that bad. The set was so incredible that I think you had to be up high to experience it all, or at least that's what I'm telling myself. My ticket was less than $40 - you can't beat that to see a legendary band.

The incredible British band Muse opened. I'm kind of obsessed with them right now. They did the Twilight soundtrack song "Supermassive Black Hole." Twilight author Stephenie Meyer is a known fan of the group, and has said that they provided inspiration for the series.

The group also sang a few songs from their new and fifth album The Resistance like their radio hit "Uprising" and "Undisclosed Desires." They sang hits off of their older albums like "Starlight" and "Knights of Cydonia." Lead singer Matt Bellamy's falsetto is unreal. To me, their music sounds other-worldly. I often think that they sound a bit like Queen too with their harmonization.

After a short wait, U2 came on. Bono was wearing black leather with his signature shades, and The Edge was wearing his signature beanie. The claw-like set turned into a light show. There was a large screen that expanded and lit up during different parts of the show.

The band sang all of my favorite songs including a duet between Edge and Bono of "One," a vivacious rendition of "Beautiful Day," "With or Without You," "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For," "Stuck in a Moment You Can't Get Out Of," "Pride" and "Vertigo."

U2 is a very human rights conscious band, and you could tell during the show. Bono talked about peace, and in one song they had student members of UVA's Amnesty International group come on stage wearing masks depicting Burma's elected leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been jailed since her election. He also frequently thanked his band members Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen, Jr. for letting him be in their band - he even said that he would be nothing without them. Bono also kept telling the crowd "God bless you" and did a touching rendition of "Amazing Grace."

It takes a certain kind of band to be able to play in an outdoor stadium. I saw the Rolling Stones at Scott Stadium a few years ago, and I loved it. U2 and Muse definitely pulled it off well - the sound and show were amazing.

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