Opening Act(s): The Seahorses
Mofo, I Will Follow, Gone, Even Better Than The Real Thing, Last Night On Earth, Until The End Of The World, New Year’s Day, Pride (In The Name Of Love), I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, All I Want Is You, Staring At The Sun, I Am Sailing, Miami, Bullet The Blue Sky, Please, Where The Streets Have No Name. Encore(s): Discothèque, If You Wear That Velvet Dress, With Or Without You, Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me, Mysterious Ways, MLK, One-Unchained Melody.
By Matthew Reilly
Having seen Popmart for the first time 3 days earlier in Dublin I thought I knew what to expect. I was wrong.
I had worked out the best place to be - by the walkway, near the b-stage - and was ready, or so I thought. As Howie B spun “Mission Impossible” I knew there wasn’t much looking to go, and sure enough, what came next was the now familiar intro to “Pop Muzik”. They came on. I screamed like a girl. Here they were, only 6 feet away. My heroes. My favourite band. In my home town. They then blew me away…again.
I can’t exactly pin down what it was. The Mofo/Follow seque is a killer, and Gone is by far the best song on Pop. But it is not that. It is the greatest band in the world, playing there hearts out, and demonstrating for all time that they are exactly like us. They feel the same things. Do the same things. See the same things.
The defining moment isn’t hard to capture really. Near the end. We’ve just had Mysterious Ways, not my favourite by any means. I’m expecting Yer Man to go back to the main stage and start One. But he just stands there. A faint sound comes over the speakers. He sings, “Sleep, sleep tonight/And may your dreams be realised/If the thundercloud passes rain/So let it rain/Rain on her.” He is standing barely 6 feet away, I can see there is something moving in him. He looks up. On the screen are 4 Warholian pictures of Diana. This is it. He says he doesn’t know why these things affect us so much and that we - Scots, Irish, English - are all the same. Then it is One and I cried.
I had come back from Dublin very early on the Sunday morning. I hadn’t a clue what had happened until I put the TV on. My day froze then. It is hard to explain. I’ve never really thought much of the Royals, but this was different. And U2 captured it all for me.
It was a phenomenal gig, dreadful sound or otherwise. A friend of mine said that during Streets it was liking watching waves of people moving. They were was something different to Dublin. They had nothing to prove to anyone here, and so just played their hearts out. It was amazing.