Boston: Tuesday 5/24 - Great Band, Not So Great Crowd + Opening Night in Boston - U2 Feedback

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Old 03-23-2005, 08:24 AM   #1
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May 24, Fleet Center in Boston

Please post your reviews of the May 24th show here.

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Old 05-24-2005, 08:01 PM   #2
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Boston: Tuesday 5/24 - Great Band, Not So Great Crowd

Just got back form the show at Fleet Center. All in all, a good show, but not a great show by U2 standards, in humble my opinion. My seats in the balcony may be to blame partially, based on both sound quality and crowd energy (I'll be back in balcony on Thurs, and on the floor in Oct and Dec, so I'll have a point of reference for future shows).

I think they started off a bit slow, but the band (and Bono) really got moving by the time Sunday Bloody Sunday rolled around. It seemed it took a few songs for Bono's voice to really warm up.

However, I REALLY liked the song selection - it was totally different style from the last two tours (pretty much the standard set for this tour, but saddened by lack of New Year's Day). I particularly liked the middle section.

I think the biggest problem, however, was the crowd. Compared to other U2 shows, the crowd just wasn't as in to it. It seemed like half the crowd knew only the last two albums and nothing else (excpet the REALLY big hits like One, Pride, etc). No one was moving/singing/dancing for Electric Co. (which was awesome), Zoo Station, The Fly, Bullet the Blue Sky. I was going crazy as Bono did his little Zoo TV bit (goose-stepping, etc. right from the Zoo TV tour as seen on the Live in Sydney Video), and I looked around, and it was like no one had any idea what was going on. Even the ellipse was dead. Hell, even 40 took a while to get the crowd singing (I think 50% of the people were hearing the song for the first time, and learning the words).

Again, maybe I am biased after seeing some amazing shows in NY/NJ on the floor during Elevation. Or maybe it's because Boston has a younger crowd, due to the college factor, and I am now a crotchety old man at the age of 24. Regardless, take my review with a grain of salt

So, a very good show, but not U2's best...But I'm already looking forward to Thursday! Se ya there!

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Old 05-24-2005, 08:30 PM   #3
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I agree fully with o-nick's post. I am just back from the Fleet Ctr as well.

The band was very strong tonight. Probably a 8 out of 10 if I had to score the show, relative to the other 20 or so u2 shows I have been to in my life going back to zootv days.

Highlights: Electric Co, Miracle Drug and Bono's intro to the song, Love and Peace, Fly, 40, Bono's voice. From 1/3rd of the way in and onwards, his voice was awesome. Best in several tours. Also great watching Larry run - and I mean sprint out to the end of the ramp during Yaweh as he got a late start by dropping his ALD over by his drum kit. He made it with about 1 second to spare until his keyboard part.

Few downers:
-Crowd - very quiet during Fly, Zoo, Electric Co

-Very little crowd interaction - no one pulled up on stage, no irish flag during SBS. Maybe that's 3rd show kind of stuff...

-Sound quality for the first few songs - it was cranked up WAAAY too loud. I have to believe that Joe is doing this on purpose since it is the universal feedback from every show that has been reviewied.

-Where I sat: in the skyboxes with one of the big local team owners. Half the box left before the 1st encore. The othe half could care less about the music.

-Edge didnt seem that into it in the early part of the set. He got way more into it in the 2nd half of the set and was "Edge-dancing" for a few songs. He missed some notes early on and didnt really sing his verse of miracle drug (Bono sang most of Edge's verse for him). Though I'm sure miracle drug is probably a pretty emotional song for the edge these days, so hard to tell what was going on.

All in all, it wasnt like San Jose 2 on Elevation (my top U2 show ever - where I was in the heart). But it was a very very solid show with no real surprises for those of us addicted to "blue crack" (interference)

See you on the floor Thursday night - hopefully in the bomb shelter....
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Old 05-24-2005, 08:36 PM   #4
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Reminder to those going to the shows Thursday/Saturday. We are still in search of sources for the setlist parties...
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Old 05-24-2005, 08:48 PM   #5
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I thought the show was absolutely amazing and the crowd was insane. Actually better than both NJ I just saw. From my vantage point, Bono was very into the show, laughing and kidding around a bunch. Streets got higher than the other shows, as well, as did the whole second part of the tour.

Oh yeah- and the band had fun- Bono said "It's good to be home"

I'll try to get a review together manana.
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Old 05-24-2005, 09:15 PM   #6
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Just back as well. A good show. Not great just good IMHO. A 4 out of 10 on the U2 scale. Probably a 7 out of 10 on the normal enjoyment level. My vantage pt. was lower level directly across the stadium from the band & dead center. A fantastic view by the way!

Tonight was my 16th U2 show and I didn't feel it had anything special. Then again, I didn't think that the 6/5 Boston 1 show for Elevation was good either, but the rest of the week was excellent.

Some thoughts:
a.) I'd love to see more use of the elipse. Good to see Adam out there a few times though.

b.) I liked the bulb lights more than I thought I would. There are parts of the show that it's well used but other times when it seems like color is just thrown onto the lights for the sake of doing it.

c.) No fans pulled up, no new songs, no new snippets and little interaction outside of the Africa / One agenda.

d.) Great to see Larry singing and enjoying himself.

e.) I thought the crowd was actually pretty good considering the type of day we had in Boston. It really felt as if it would snow out there today.

f.) I think the mix sounded horrible during for the early part of the show. It seems like that's happened on the first night of several cities on the tour. Hopefully, Joe O. will dial it in perfectly on Thursday.

Anyone else thinking the same things?

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Old 05-24-2005, 09:37 PM   #7
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HMmm Boston Show

I just got back also.. My full review will be posted tomorrow...Im beat!! I got great pictures and small show.. Tried to sneak in my zoom camera..after they found it on my friend.. Darn Fleetcenter sucks..searched every little thing..and to top it off, they took the memory card and wouldnt return it..but little did they know I had 2 more...HIDDEN HA! So I gave them the $40 memory card instead of giving them the batteries..

Anyway, the show was great ..seemed short to me..Bono sounded great...but seemed to be hoarse somewhat.

I was in Loge 20..30 feet from the stage!..side view...amazing seats..I must say..VERY VERY LOUD!! My ears are still ringing ..horrible..Louder concert than Mettallica!!! I dont know who posted that the crowd wasnt into it. I seen over 40 U2 shows and this crowd was one of the best I have ever seen EVER~
More later--Pics tomorrow
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Old 05-25-2005, 12:35 AM   #8
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i dont get how people can have such difference of opinions? were you at the same show? some say the energy level was huge, some say it was weak, some say the show was great some say it was "good but not great", i mean i know were people are sitting might affect someones take on the show, but come on, surley you still seen the same show?
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Old 05-25-2005, 01:33 AM   #9
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the crowd was standing in the part of the balcony where i was, i consider that to mean good crowd. these are the people who only stood when REM played "man on the moon" or "losing my religion" in the good seats. i think my expectations were just a bit lower, i didn't expect them to stay standing for the whole show.

i don't go to a lot of shows this size, i attributed the crap sound to being almost above (and almost directly across, on the other side of the arena) from the massive speakers.

this was the first u2 show i've ever been to (most likely the last, definetly the last on this tour). i'm not the easist fan to win over - with the exception of the week htdaab was leaked and the week it actually came out, i don't think i've listened to more than a handful of u2 songs in over 2 years. and i've only really been a fan for about 4 and a half years. i figure that if i managed to have a good time and want to listen to u2 songs on the whole 2 and a half hour drive home, it must have been pretty good.
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Old 05-25-2005, 03:23 AM   #10
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Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I thought the show was absolutely amazing and the crowd was insane. :
I agree with you. I was in the 1st row, balcony and from that vantage point I could see the entire arena. It looked as though 95 % of the people were standing for the entire show. I thought it was a great crowd. I could see people dancing everywhere.

I loved the show, but I did feel as if they were getting warmed up for the next couple of nights. I'm looking forward to seeing some more interaction with the crowd on Thurs and Sat. I thought that Streets did have a little more juice as well.
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Old 05-25-2005, 03:44 AM   #11
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Originally posted by oliveu2cm
I thought the show was absolutely amazing and the crowd was insane
So did I I haven't been to any other shows this tour. I never care how much the crowd is into it, I am and that's all I care about.

I had an amazing seat, loge 12 row 7. Had great people around me too, nice people who enjoyed themselves but still respected other people. No really obnoxious drunks near me for once.

Edge was absolutely on fire, it was thrilling every time he stepped out my way. I found myself watching Edge and Adam more than Bono, they really seem to have stepped up this tour and taken their well deserved spotlight. Unless he always does it, it was so funny when Larry had to run on the catwalk to get back for Yahweh, like he had forgotten or something lol.He's a fast runner too, all you could see was this black blur..

I liked that no one was pulled up on stage, it seems like some people go just to try to do that. For me it's just a little tired and predictable at this point.
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Old 05-25-2005, 03:58 AM   #12
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That's how I felt in NJ. The crowd just wasn't into it and it in turn reflected on how I felt about the concert. When I saw them a couple of days later at MSG, my opinion completely changed. The crowd makes all the difference.
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Old 05-25-2005, 04:39 AM   #13
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Davey, and SFU2, I'm right with you regarding the mix...I also was dead center, but about 6 rows back in baclony...And the sound was pretty bad for the first 1/3 of the show. I basically avoid arena concerts these days, except for when U2 rolls around, so I originally attributed the sound simply to bad acoustics (compared to all the small venues around Boston). But, sometime around SBS, I thought the mix got a lot better. Both the vocals and guitar were much cleaner. It also helped, that I think Bono's voice got stronger too.

As for the crowd, it's true people were standing, but that's not that uncommon U2 is it? At least people were standing at the 4 shows I've been to previously. People were standing, but to me still, energy seemed low - short on cheering dancing, yelling, etc. MrsSpringsteen, it's true tha the only thing that really matters is the band - but it seems to me that U2 (and especially Bono) really feeds off the crowd, so the shows with great crowds, tend to be more enetertaining, in my opinion.

As for the differing opinions? Well, here's my disclaimer:

1)I'm rating this show and the crowd vs. other U2 shows, since it's unfair to compare most bands to these guys. So, I'd say a good, but not great, show by U2 standards. Great by the standards of almost any other band.

2)As I mentioned, I was in the balcony - maybe I'd have been more impressed with the crowd if I was in GA. Things always have a tendency to look better when your about 10 feet from the band, as opposed to about 250. Especially when your half mad after standing for 6 hours, it's 100 degrees, and you've screemed your lungs off.

BTW - My perfonal favorites last night: SBS, BTBS, Electric CO., Zoo Station, the Fly, 40. And I thought Miracle Drug exceeded my expectations...
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:04 AM   #14
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I got Ga's at the last minute and I ended up by the soundboard. I thought the show was pretty good. It is U2 afterall! I think the crowd got tired after dealing with the crap weather though. I thought people would be bouncing up and down with Zoo Station but not alot of people did. Anyways, I thought the show was great. We'll probably get a surprise on the 2nd and 3rd night.
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Old 05-25-2005, 05:31 AM   #15
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"And the sound was pretty bad for the first 1/3 of the show. I basically avoid arena concerts these days, except for when U2 rolls around, so I originally attributed the sound simply to bad acoustics (compared to all the small venues around Boston). But, sometime around SBS, I thought the mix got a lot better. Both the vocals and guitar were much cleaner. It also helped, that I think Bono's voice got stronger too."

I thought the sound was pretty bad through most of the show. I was in the GA straight back, about where I was in Chicago & the echo was brutal. I thought Bonos' voice sounded raspy, might be doing to many shows here at the end of 1st leg.
As far as the crowd I thought they were pretty good, might have been into it more if the band used the ellipse more, they seemed to spend alot of time on stage last night.
And finally the set list---short & typical, no BAD, NYD, Origin, no surprises...maybe I'll sell sat's ticket.
I'd rate the show about a 6 out of 10

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