Opening Act(s): Garbage
Elevation, Beautiful Day, Until The End Of The World, New Year’s Day, Out Of Control, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of, Kite, My Sweet Lord, Angel Of Harlem, People Get Ready, Please, Bad-Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses, Where The Streets Have No Name, I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For, Pride (In The Name Of Love). Encore: Bullet The Blue Sky, What’s Going On, New York, One, Peace On Earth-Walk On.
Bono dedicates ‘Kite’ to his own dad and to Mike Mills’ (of R.E.M.) father, who died this past September. Mills and R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe are attendance tonight. U2 sings ‘My Sweet Lord’ in tribute to ex-Beatle George Harrison, who died yesterday of cancer at age 58. A male fan is brought on stage to play guitar during ‘People Get Ready.’
By J. Tilton
Atlanta Elevation Review
Bono has said that music is the language of the spirit. Nowhere was this truer than last week in Atlanta where the bond between band and audience required no translation. In my humble opinion, this was one of the band’s most emotional and uplifting shows on any of the three legs of this their most successful tour to date. Soul cleansing, cathartic, and emotionally rejuvenating is how I would describe this show. It could also describe the huge impact this band has made on America —particularly since September 11th.
In my mind, this is what great rock & roll should be. As Bono has also said, “Great rock ‘n’ roll, the raw stuff, is pure joy. It’s that sense of being alive, of being grateful for your pulse.” This show brought out many of the emotions my wife and I have shared these past several months in a most healthy and uplifting way. There was a moment in the middle of ‘Kite’ where an overwhelming feeling of joy overcame me. I looked heavenward and prayed to The Almighty not to let this moment end. I thanked him for blessing us with such a great band who always find a way to simultaneously challenge our ambitions while reminding us of the important things in life—-family, friendship, …each other.
My 4th show on the Elevation tour—and by far the most memorable. My wife and I waited 7 hours in the GA line and were rewarded with a front row view of the stage just under ‘The Edge’ to the right front. This was our first time in the heart, having experienced golden circle reserved at the other three shows. Seeing them this close confirmed what I’ve known for some time. That celebrity does not overcome these guys. They are regular people just like you and me who happen to be extremely talented artistically and musically and who use these gifts to make our world (and theirs) a better place.
Highlights: Jumping and screaming in unrepressed joy for 2 hours. The goal is ‘El-e-vate my Soouul !!! (lost all self-control !!!)
Glancing to my left during ‘One’ as the names of the September 11th victims scrolled on the video wall and spotting Paul McGuiness next to me in the exit tunnel watching the show’s finale. At the end of the song, I turned and said to him “Thanks Paul for bringing them back to Atlanta.” He smiled and nodded.
Michael Stipe and Mike Mills of R.E.M. walking in the photographer pit and stopping directly behind us during ‘Walk On’. Bono said at the end of the night that every time he thinks of Atlanta he thinks of R.E.M.
Almost catching a guitar pick from Dallas Schoo at the end of the show then shaking Edge’s hand as he reappeared on stage in front of us. My wife was behind me and she looked directly at him and whispered “Thank you.” He blew her a kiss in acknowledgement.
Full version of ‘My Sweet Lord’ played in tribute to George Harrison who recently passed away. This brought back childhood memories in the early 70’s when my parents played this song on the turntable in our living room. The Beatle’s impact on all of us will forever endure.
Acoustic version of ‘Please’. What an appropriate song to sing with its pleading references to religious and political fanatics to end their evil deeds against civilization. Bono’s voice was in fine form and he hit some of the higher notes in falsetto perfectly.
‘Kite’. Dedicated to Bono’s father and to Mike Mills’ father who’d also recently passed away. This song has a way of flowing like waves in the sea. You feel as though you’re riding on top of the waves…
‘Sunday Bloody Sunday’. Still as much passion as when they were 20. Larry’s pounding drums and Adam’s bass line its anchors.
‘Until The End of The World’. Edge’s rolling guitar riff near the end of the song and the sparring routine between he and Bono.
The emotional release of ‘Bad’ and the segue into ‘Streets’. This was probably the highlight of the night as you could literally feel the entire arena rise in a sea of emotion in perfect tandem to Larry’s drum roll…’I want to run. I want to hide. I want to tear down the walls that hold me tonight…..’
‘People Get Ready’. Guitar solo (again in front of us) by a fan, Richard, who absolutely blew it out of the water he played so well. When he finished Bono and Edge looked at each other and were stunned. Bono then put his arm around Richard and said to the crowd, “Richard the Lionheart.” I think Richard said in his review that Bono later whispered, “You’re going to be a great man.” …Inspiring. Hope you have a great career Richard. You definitely can play man!!
Rousing versions of ‘Out of Control’ and ‘Pride’. Youthful angst unleashed. Martin Luther King on the video wall. We will meet again in the Promised Land.
‘Walk On’. Something about this song moves me in a special way. Leave the baggage behind, realize what’s important in life, keep your head held high and march onward. A final close to a great night with ‘Hallelujah. Halle, Halle-e-e-lu-u-jah!!
For us, for America, for the world: Thanks guys for a great life and we will ‘wipe our tears away’ and ‘begin again.’
PS.. Can’t wait to hear the next album. Hurry back into the studio and please don’t make us wait too long.
Best Regards to All,
Jarrett Tilton Atlanta, Georgia
All images are © Joanne; © Mark Hoffman