Opening Act(s): Babasonicos & Illa Kuriaki & the Balderramas
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, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Bullet The Blue Sky, Please, Where The Streets Have No Name. Encore(s): Discothèque, With Or Without You, Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me, Mysterious Ways, One, Mothers Of The Disappeared.
U2’s first Argentinian concert features Mothers Of The Disappeared. It’s played for the first time since December 20, 1987 and some of the real “mothers of the disappeared” (the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, or in Spanish, Madres de Plaza de Mayo) join U2 on stage during One and Mothers Of The Disappeared.
U2 honored their debt with Argentina
by Sebastian Ramos
In front of more than 45,000 people, the Irish band opened last night at River Stadium its awaited series of three shows.
Finally, the rain didn’t spoil the party: 45,000 people enjoyed the first show of the Irish band U2 last night.
“Ever since we started this tour, in April 1997, it never rained during the set”, was said the day before yesterday by one of the organizers of the LatinAmerican leg of the world tour of U2, while the rain didn’t stop pouring over the city, and the unreediming gray sky gave no signs of getting better.
But yesterday, as the time passed, the clouds disappeared and so did the fear of those who had bought their tickets for the first of the three shows of the Irish band, so they marched hopefully towards the River Stadium. And those words were prophetic. In the no.78 show of the PopMart tour, such is the name of the world tour that brought the band to Buenos Aires for the very first time, it didn’t rain either.
A few minutes after 10:00 PM the lights of the stadium went off, and the stomping rythm of PopMuzik ended with the anxious waiting. Finally, and after several failed attempts to bring them to Argentina, U2 gave the initial kick-off for their first presentation in Buenos Aires. The supporting bands had already perform at dusk: Babasonicos (who played for half an hour at 7:15 PM), and Ilya Kuryaki (who played for 40 minutes until nearly 9:00 PM); both were well received by the crowd that was covering the field and the seats of the Stadium. Also half an hour of disco music was offered by the DJ Howie B. himself, the producer of the album “Pop”, latest album of the Irishmen.
All that was missing were the true stars of the night, and that they showed to the 45,000 people in the stadium what is it that they call PopMart Tour.
Amidst the general howling and the potent light of the reflectors, Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen Jr. appeared in between the crowd, and walked towards the stage to perform one of the best and more complete shows ever seen in these lands.
Once on stage, with the imponent screen (17x52 meters) behind them, the band started with Mofo, that is to say, the most modern sound of this new version of U2. Then they gave the show a 180-degree twist by playing the most antic song the band presented in this show: “I will follow”, from their first album “Boy”.
In the beginning, the Irishmen were all stamina and gave everything of themselves song after song, without giving the fanatic and enthusiastic audience the time to catch their breath, while cheering and singing every one of the songs. “Gone”, “Last night on earth”, “Even better than the real thing”, and “Until the end of the world” had the expected effect on the audience. Two of them belong to the album “Pop”, and two of them to “Achtung Baby”, the most represented albums during the show.
At the same time, the images reproduced on the screen surprised and amazed everybody. A wave of intese colors combined with animations with a “pop-art” style from the 60s hypnotized the audience.
Then, the initial ectasy seem to had faded. But it hadn’t. It was the time for the first classics of the band, and again the emotion and joy exploded in the people that woudln’t stop jumping and dancing.
The 90s version of “New Year’s Day”, and the heart-felt “Pride (In the name of love)” formed one of the most memorable segments of the show.
A numerous group of Madres de Plaza de Mayo was present in the stadium to honor the commitment Bono made public as soon as he and his partners arrived to Buenos Aires, inviting them on stage for their megashow.
At the closing time for this edition, about 30 Madres were ready to go on stage and be part of the show, accompanying the musicians during the last song “Mothers of the Disappeared.”
© 1998 La Nacion. All rights reserved.