Somewhere Between Squawk and Awe

Jun 6
Posted by admin Filed in Rock Bands

I had a great time at the U2 show last night but first I want to say a couple of words about some of the comments that I’ve heard and ready from others that were in attendance.

Seriously people, you were expecting the sound techs to deliver a crystal clear, perfectly balanced product in an open air football stadium? I’ve read so many of these comments today with most of the complaints coming from the folks sitting up in the 300 level. I’m sure it wasn’t perfect but don’t you have to compare it to other stadium shows to get a good gauge on if the sound last night was of a passable grade. My guess is that a lot of the belly achers are folks that don’t go to a lot of shows. I, being a person that does go to a lot of shows, can tell you that the sound last night was as good or better than a lot of the smaller, more manageable (for the sound techs) venues that I typically go to.

Try not to focus on the fact that you paid $100+ for the ticket and in doing so got your expectations all out of whack. The $20 U2 show is a thing of the pre-camera phone, pre-Claw, pre-Bono with net worth in the hundreds of millions of dollars past and if you missed it ain’t never coming back.

What, you say you just want to hear the band play song, and not listen to Bono run his mouth about his social agenda? I’m afraid you missed another boat if this was the case for you, and you would have been disappointed even if you would have seen the distant memory of a $20 U2 show. Watch or listen to any concert footage ever from the Dublin boys and you’ll find that a little op-ed has always been part of Bono’s nightly delivery. And with that, I say good night to the squawkers.

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If you paid your good chunk of change, did the leg work, got a good spot on the floor/in the inner circle, you should do yourself a favor and try to enjoy yourself. I thought that the whole experience was spectacular and would part ways with another $75 to do it again, in a heartbeat. I think that this is the 7th concert that I’ve been to this year – I like my $15 to $20 shows – and the cash that I paid for U2 was about equal to the total that I paid for the other six shows.

What did I go for? The songs. All of those songs starting from “Achtung Baby” and working back that I’ve listened to hundreds of times and still love. I would have been fine seeing them in the same sized venue sans The Claw and all of its gadgetry but I was still fine with all of the spectacle that fits with the times that we live in. I didn’t think that some of the special effects always meshed that well with the music but I can get past that.

Since I don’t go to hardly any stadium shows, I didn’t really know what to expect from the crowd. What I found was lots of talkative, courteous, happy, and diverse neighbors to hang out it with for four hours. I’m always baffled by the texting, drinking, loud talking idiots who go to shows at The Showbox or Crocodile and never shut their face and give their neighbors as well as the performers, the respect they deserve. Last night, I almost felt like part of a community that was looking out for each other. That was very refreshing and is something that I’ve become kind of unaccustomed to.

I went to the show last night prepared and expecting to be awed by a huge mega-band, on the most beautiful day of the year in Seattle, and my expectations were met. Hopefully, as time passes, some of the squawkers will look back on the show and let some of the highlights filter through as they adjust the unrealistic expectations that they feel that came as part of the deal when they paid their hard earned money for their pricey tickets. We don’t always get exactly what we want out of life, but when you always want everything, you end up feeling like you’ve got nothing.

“City of Blinding Lights” – U2 – “How to Dismatle An Atomic Bomb” (2004)

Don’t look before you laugh
Look ugly in a photograph
Flash bulbs purple irises
The camera can’t see

– DAVE

“Running to Stand Still” – U2 – “The Joshua Tree” (1987)

Sep 12
Posted by admin Filed in Mega Bands

Supposedly, members of U2 have referred to this song as “Bad, Part 2.” So, it’s somewhat coincidental but not too surprising that this is the second U2 song that I’ve posted to this blog since “Bad” is my favorite U2 song of all time, and will probably stay at # 1 since I’ve liked virtually nothing they’ve done for the last 20 years.

This is the # 5 track, and unsung hero of “The Joshua Tree” having slipped between the cracks of “Where The Streets Have No Name” and “With Or Without You.” I guess it’s not too surprising that it didn’t get heavy commercial rotation as it tells the tale of the grim and gray despair that effects vast numbers of those less fortunate. A lot of people leave square one with a lot to overcome and out run, but in the end can’t overcome themselves.

She runs through the streets
With her eyes painted red
Under black belly of cloud in the rain
In through a doorway she brings me
White gold and pearls stolen from the sea
She is raging
She is raging
And the storm blows up in her eyes
She will…

– DAVE