U2 perform "Desire" in Las Vegas at the iHeartRadio Music Festival (9/23/16)


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As one of the biggest bands on the planet, you'd expect U2 to celebrate 40 years in the business in typical rock star fashion.

Irish Independent

But the Dublin four-piece settled for cake and balloons as they celebrated 40 years in music on Sunday.

In a mock video that the band shared on Facebook, all four members can be seen sitting in silence at the get-together. The quietness is only broken by the sound of The Edge blowing a streamer and Bono popping a balloon.

The video has been watched over one million times as fans toast the band's milestone.

They formed on September 25, 1976 after a young Larry Mullen Jnr posted an advertisement for members to join his band on a noticeboard at Dublin's Mount Temple school.

It read: "Drummer seeks musicians to form band" and Adam Clayton, Paul Hewson (Bono) and Dave Evans (The Edge) all replied and in a career that's spanned four decades, U2 have gone on to become one of the biggest bands in the world.

Bono spins Republican's gloomy rhetoric into optimistic message at Las Vegas concert

By Daniel Kreps, Rolling Stone

Days after Bono labeled Donald Trump as "potentially the worst idea that ever happened to America," U2 spun the Republican nominee's gloomy rhetoric into an optimistic message during their performance of "Desire" Friday at the iHeartRadio Festival in Las Vegas.

Juxtaposing footage of a Trump's pandering plea to black voters with Las Vegas' dice-rolling reputation, Bono asked the crowd, "Are you ready to gamble your car?" before sampling the Trump sound bite "What do you have to lose?" The singer then asks the crowd "Are you ready to gamble the American Dream," which was followed by video of Trump's assertion that "the American Dream is dead."

"The American Dream is alive," Bono then shouted to the crowd before returning to "Desire."

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"We remember that peace is not just the absence of violence. Peace is love organized," Bono says from the Vegas stage. "So get out and vote, whoever you're voting for."

By Katie Atkinson, Billboard

When U2 hit the stage as the final act of the iHeartRadio Music Festival on Friday night, they kicked right into the 1988 Rattle and Hum single "Desire" -- perfectly fitting the show's Las Vegas venue with its themes of bright lights and big money. And sure enough, Sin City imagery like showgirls, slot machines and poker tables flashed above the legendary Irish rockers to drive the point home.

But as the song continued, and its lyrical message became clearer, another theme emerged: the American presidential election and rocky cultural climate -- a theme also addressed by fellow iHeartRadio Fest performer Drake earlier in the evening.

"She's the dollars, she's my protection/ Yeah, she's the promise in the year of election," Bono sang, as the imagery suddenly shifted to a massive American flag. Then Donald Trump appeared onscreen timed with the lyrics "Like a preacher stealin' hearts at a travellin' show/ For love or money, money, money, money, money, money..." as fake dollars rained over the T-Mobile Arena crowd and Bono repeated the M-word seemingly 100 times.

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Latest U2 Concert

Opening Act(s): None

Setlist:

  1. Desire
  2. Vertigo - She Loves You
  3. Elevation
  4. Beautiful Day - Yellow
  5. Pride (In the Name of Love)
  6. One - Here Us Coming, Lord
  7. Every Breaking Wave
  8. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For

Remarks:

U2 makes its first live performance since their final concert of the 2015 Innocence + Experience tour in Paris on December 7, 2015. At the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas, NV, Bono rumbles out with a fiery version of "Desire", complete with a provocative political stab against GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump. In the middle of the performance, a video of Trump at one of his rallies is displayed on the screens where he says that the "American dream is dead". With background television sets showing Trump talking on a loop of "What have you got to lose?", Bono repeatedly exclaims out loud: "Everything!". Phony money then pours down from the rafters, mimicking a stunt used on U2's ZooTV tour when the band played "Desire" live. "With or Without You" was supposed to be performed after "I Still Haven't Found...", at least from seeing it on the setlist print-out, but for some reason it wasn't played.

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