October 12, 2009 - Arlington, Texas, USA - New Cowboys Stadium

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Opening Act(s): Muse


Breathe, Get On Your Boots, Magnificent, Mysterious Ways, Beautiful Day - Blackbird, I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For - Stand By Me, Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out Of, No Line On The Horizon, Elevation, Until The End Of The World, The Unforgettable Fire, City Of Blinding Lights, Vertigo, I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight (Remix), Sunday Bloody Sunday, MLK, Walk On - You'll Never Walk Alone. Encore(s): One, Amazing Grace, Where The Streets Have No Name, Ultra Violet (Light My Way), With Or Without You, Moment Of Surrender.


With over 70,000 fans in attendance, U2 performed in North Texas for the first time in 5 years. In this new high tech stadium, the stage setup had to be scaled down so the entire stage would fit under the massive HD video screen (and it barely did). During an extended version of "One", former U.S. President George W. Bush and Ugandan nurse Agnes Nyamayarwo were thanked by Bono for their humanitarian work in Africa. Tiger Woods, Jerry Jones and Manu Ginobili were in attendance.

Media Review:

Fort Worth Star-Telegram

U2 show in Arlington is visually arresting, occasionally moving


ARLINGTON -- U2 is incapable of intimacy.

The Irish rockers' detractors would tack "subtlety" onto that sentence as well, but Bono and the boys were never about hushed, small moments. No, this outsized foursome is engineered to deliver epic moments, pulsing with urgency and hope.

Such moments were frequently on display Monday night at Cowboys Stadium, as U2 played its first North Texas gig in five years, as part of its U2 360 tour. Much has been made about the stage affectionately dubbed the "spaceship" and, yes, it was mightily impressive. It should come as no surprise that despite its gargantuan size (the pylon atop the stage was a hairsbreadth from Jerry Jones's big ol' HDTV), this feat of engineering appeared right at home in the futuristic new stadium.

For more than two hours, U2 mingled spectacle and sincerity, dazzling more than 70,000 fans with songs old and new. On the road supporting its latest album, No Line on the Horizon, U2 dispatched many of the fresh tunes up front, leaving the bulk of the set list for favorites like Mysterious Ways and I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For. The crowd roared for the classics, but gave No Line's selections a cooler reception. If the indifference bothered the superstars, it didn't show.

Despite more than three decades in the business, U2 still attacks its songs with a ferocity that belies its standing. That said, the overwhelming scale of the stage, not to mention Bono's healthy ego, can hold even the most ardent fan at arm's length. While visually arresting and occasionally moving, the night was not without its hiccups: Bono's peculiar decision to pluck a random child out of the crowd and parade him around the circular stage during City of Blinding Lights was a head-scratcher. Sure, it's cool for the kid to witness a sea of humanity and get a pair of your shades, but, uh, what's the point?

But that's the nature of U2: Random acts of generosity spiked by exhortations to get involved in your world. Excess rests comfortably against sacrifice; hubris wrestles with humility. If the band wasn't so talented -- ambition has arguably been slowly snuffed out of U2's music, although a stage such as this one suggests a few burning embers -- it would feel like cheap rock 'n' roll theater.

As the Edge's regal, gleaming guitar lines reflected and refracted off of Cowboys Stadium's interior and the crowd took the first verse of Looking For, it was hard not to give over and let U2 work its magic.

Preston Jones is the Star-Telegram pop music critic. 817-390-7713

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on October 13, 2009 12:37 AM.

October 9, 2009 - Tampa, Florida, USA - Raymond James Stadium was the previous entry in this blog.

October 14, 2009 - Houston, Texas, USA - Reliant Stadium is the next entry in this blog.

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