Opening Act(s): The Pixies
Zoo Station, The Fly, Even Better Than The Real Thing, Mysterious Ways, One, Until The End Of The World, Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses, Tryin’ to Throw Your Arms Around The World, Angel Of Harlem, Satellite Of Love, Bad-All I Want Is You-Bullet The Blue Sky, Running To Stand Still, Where The Streets Have No Name, Pride (In The Name Of Love), I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For. Encore(s): Desire, Ultraviolet (Light My Way), With Or Without You, Love Is Blindness.
Live debuts of Zoo Station, The Fly, Even Better Than The Real Thing, Mysterious Ways, One, Until The End Of The World, Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses, Tryin’ To Throw Your Arms Around The World, Ultraviolet and Love Is Blindness. First time U2 covered Satellite Of Love in full, though Bono had sung snippets of it a few times during Bad in the 1980’s. Bullet The Blue Sky and Desire are distinctly different to past live versions. The former is even more hard-rocking than it was on the Joshua Tree and Lovetown tours and features a longer solo. The latter has completely different guitar effects, and during the song, Bono plays the role of Mirrorball Man, a parody of U.S. televangelists.
U2’s tour opens with a glitz blitz
by Edna Gundersen
LAKELAND, Fla. - Forget those meditative minimalists of the ’80s. U2, rebelling against myth, has resurfaced with a sensual, eye-popping, campy and playful show, adorned with unexpected European decadence and Vegas trash.
The Irish quartet’s 31-city Zoo TV Tour, its first U.S. outing since 1987, opened Saturday before 7,500 fans in the sold-out Lakeland Civic Center.
Eight magnificent tunes from U2’s ambitious Achtung Baby dominate the first half, with past hits rounding out the second, pop’s typical strategy. Surprisingly, the Achtung material - jagged, industrial, psychedelic dance/rock roaring against a visual barrage - tops even crowd-pleasing hits like “Desire,” “Where the Streets Have No Name” and “Pride (In the Name of Love).”
While leaving little room for spontaneity, the computerized visuals - projected on scores of TV monitors - magnify the music’s power. A blinding assault of serio-comic messages (“Celebrity is a job,” “Admit nothing”) accompanies “The Fly.” Random live satellite transmissions are tuned in for “Even Better Than the Real Thing.” To offset the high-tech, six painted, light-festooned Trabants (obsolete East German cars) dangle above.
Eye candy aside, sublime music drives the two-hour concert. Bono, slinky in shiny black leather, glides from passionate wails to a chilling rumble. Guitarist the Edge, against the formidable rhythms of drummer Larry Mullen Jr. and bassist Adam Clayton, remains U2’s sonic wizard.
Ironically, the highlight of this ornate spectacle is a stripped-down “Angel of Harlem” and Lou Reed’s “Satellite of Love,” played Unplugged-style on a tiny stage extending into the crowd. Even without the extravagance, U2 is too much.
© USA Today, 1992. All rights reserved.