U2 Not Ready To Retire In Florida
July 1, 2011 · Print This Article
U2 came to South Florida on an overcast evening and made up their year-long postponement with style and plenty of emotion. As the final leg of the 360 Tour winds down, the band appear more than ready to keep their unforgettable fire … alive. The set started out with the boys walking out together very similar to the Elevation Tour. The opening sequence to Even Better Than the Real Thing really got the crowd fired up. From there, it was the Achtung Baby ride. It was almost as if the band were prepping the crowd and the global media for the upcoming remasters of Achtung Baby and Zooropa celebrating Achtung Baby’s 1991 release. It took a few tunes to get into the full spirit of the show, and then it really, really came into its own.
Crowd favorites like I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For sounded as fresh as ever. As a diehard fan of these rocking middle-aged men, they certainly don’t seem to want to fade away into the sunset just yet. The claw is an awesome spectacle to see in-person as anyone would know who’s been to a 360 show. Its massive design is really impressive. My gut feeling tells me this will be the last large-scale stadium tour from them for quite awhile. Bono made some comedic comments, as usual, alluding to the Edge’s dancing the night before in Miami and having a few too many. They have mad love for this town, and it shows. Zooropa sounded brilliant, but it appeared that only the diehards really appreciated it. Bono made sure to remind the crowd that this was the city where Zoo TV had its birth, and they had some great fun with it.
As the show went on, it got livelier with each song. I did notice that Bono’s voice couldn’t quite hit the highest falsetto notes when singing Miss Sarajevo as previously done on the ’05 Vertigo Tour, but that’s a minor glitch if you will. I’ve been to several U2 shows since 1985, and to judge each show is almost like trying to pick your favorite child of the bunch. It’s a tough task at times with this band. Pride sounded awesome, and I was surprised at how well the crowd welcomed it back with open arms. I Will Follow got the same treatment earlier in the set. The crowd got a treat with a decent acoustic version of the song North Star. I’m still on the fence with this one, but I am quite excited to hear a studio version of this song in its entirety. Bono made sure to give the Latin culture of Miami plenty of affection reminding the estimated 75,000 that “There’s a love affair going on here, Miami.”
With the closing encore, the band was in top form. One was epic on this night as it generally is on any given performance. The same should be said for Where The Streets Have No Name, which had the crowd absolutely pumping. These are songs that are deep-rooted in a U2 fans’ heart for life. They rarely sound stale, if ever. Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me made an appearance, and it had much of the same effect as Zooropa. You could tell who was paying attention in the crowd. The closing songs of With or Without You and Moment of Surrender were indeed, perfect. What I got out of this show was that this band isn’t done with their musical journey. There’s plenty of fire in this band to give a U2 fan hope for some incredible upcoming material. Bono dedicated the show to the late Clarence Clemons and part of his family was in attendance. LeBron James was also in attendance but had no decision to announce.
One of the very last memorable and noteworthy comments by Bono was “We are not ready to retire” which got a rather loud roar from the full capacity crowd. For a diehard fan like myself who’s followed the band passionately since 1982, this was without a doubt music to my ears. I can’t wait to see what creative direction this band from Ireland go’s on next. Whatever it may be… I’ll be ready to shout out the first lyric enthusiastically.
Review by Mike Philpot from Orlando, FL—surfing man and diehard U2 fan since 1982.
Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida
29 June 2011
1. Even Better Than The Real Thing
2. The Fly
3. Mysterious Ways
4. Until The End Of The World
5. I Will Follow
6. Get On Your Boots
7. I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For
8. North Star
9. Beautiful Day
11. Pride (In The Name Of Love)
12. Miss Sarajevo
14. City Of Blinding Lights
16. Crazy Tonight Remix
17. Sunday Bloody Sunday
19. Walk On
21. Where The Streets Have No Name
22. Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me
23. With Or Without You
24. Moment Of Surrender
Photos by Interference members TigerEdge and LuckyNumber7.
Video by chanfle98
A special “thank you” to Mike Philpot for his review from U2 buddy, kramwest1.