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This past Sunday, U2's performance of "Get Out of Your Own Way" (that was prerecorded live on January 26 on a barge along the Hudson River), was broadcasted on the 60th annual Grammy Awards in New York City.
Rolling Stone Magazine praised the performance in which they quoted:
The proximity of the Statue of Liberty helped drive home the call-to-arms nature of "Get Out of Your Own Way," which includes dire warnings about the state of democracy. "The face of liberty's starting to crack," Bono sang. "She had a plan up until she got smacked in the mouth." Adam Clayton's chugging bass line was the engine pushing the song forward, while the Edge played his usual uplifting riffs on guitar and Larry Mullen Jr. added emphatic punctuation on his cymbals. At the end of the performance, Bono picked up a megaphone to announce, "blessed are the bullies, for one day they will have to stand up to themselves." The performance ended with the singer raising his megaphone in the air, striking a pose that mimicked the Statue behind him.
In addition to that appearance, Bono and the Edge appeared live on stage during Kendrick Lamar's opening medley.
The Los Angeles Times summed it up:
Ripping through a medley centering on his song "XXX" with help from U2's Bono and the Edge, not to mention Dave Chappelle, Kendrick Lamar opened the Grammys on Sunday with the type of live-wire intensity he's well known for -- but which rarely makes it onto network television.
Finally at the end of the show, Bono and the Edge presented the Album of the Year award to Bruno Mars for his album 24K Magic.
Though the band was not up for any nominations at this year's show, U2 are the only band in history to have won the most Grammy awards, winning 22 total awards (out of 47 nominations).
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Bono and The Edge surprised commuters in Berlin, Germany performing a 15 minute set that included "Get Out of Your Own Way", "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and "One" in the "Deutsche Oper (Berlin U-Bahn)" subway station on Wednesday. We found the best video clip online for you to watch and enjoy.
U2 debuted "American Soul" for the very first time in front of a live audience last night in New York City. The band performed "Get Out of Your Own Way" as well. Watch the complete performances below:
The rock icons come to grips with the future - with flashes of their past - on 'Songs of Experience'
**** 1/2 (four and a half stars out of 5)
By David Fricke, Rolling Stone
It is nearly business as usual. "Nothing to stop this being the best day ever," Bono declares in "Love Is All We Have Left," at the start of U2's sequel to 2014's Songs of Innocence. But the singer's delivery is striking in its restraint: like cautious prayer or a fragile wish, suspended over the rippled-sea strum of the Edge's guitar and Adam Clayton's bass-guitar gravity. Bono quickly straps on his bravado in "Lights of Home": "One more push and I'll be born again," he crows, framed by the Edge's skidding-blues licks and drummer Larry Mullen Jr.'s rock-grip twist on hip-hop stride.
You hear near-fatal reckoning too. "I shouldn't be here 'cause I should be dead," Bono admits in that song's first line, alluding to his recent "brush with mortality" (as the Edge put it in a recent interview). If Songs of Innocence was rock's most persistently hopeful band looking back in wonder at its punk-rock origins and unlimited dreaming in late-Seventies Dublin, Songs of Experience is U2 in late-middle age coming to grips with an inevitable reality: They no longer have all the time in the world.
**** (Four stars out of 5)
By Neil McCormick, music critic, The Telegraph
U2's 14th studio album opens with one of the most vulnerable and fragile songs of their 41-year-career. Love Is All We Have Left swells on trembling strings and synths, with Bono's close, cracked vocal blending into digital auto-tune as he conjures a space age lullaby for an impending apocalypse. "This is no time not to be alive," he sings.
It's a short, strange, sparse vignette, its spectral beauty interrupted by a gnarly distorted guitar riff as the veteran band turn on the power, and roll exultantly into Lights of Home, a chunky anthem brushing off near-death experience ("I shouldn't be here cos I should be dead") to reach for the light at the end of the tunnel. "Free yourself to be yourself," choral voices command in a coda purpose built for mass singalongs. This is surely closer to the idea that most listeners have of U2 as an upbeat, inspirational, anthemic rock band. And Songs of Experience is full of such moments: big meaty hooks matched by singalong aphorisms ("Get out of your own way!" "Love is bigger than anything in its way"). But the sound of a man in conflict and crisis also runs through the centre of this highly personal collection of songs, undercutting and ultimately deepening the spirit of can do positivity.