December 13, 2010 - Sydney, New South Wales, Australia - ANZ Stadium

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Opening Act(s): Jay-Z


Return Of The Stingray Guitar, Beautiful Day - Blackbird, I Will Follow, Get On Your Boots, Magnificent, Mysterious Ways, Elevation, Until The End Of The World, I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For, Do They Know It's Christmas? - Stuck In A Moment You Can't Get Out Of, Bad - Need You Tonight - Never Tear Us Apart, In A Little While, Miss Sarajevo, City Of Blinding Lights, Vertigo, I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight (Remix) - Relax - Two Tribes, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Scarlet, Walk On - You'll Never Walk Alone. Encore(s): One, Amazing Grace - Where The Streets Have No Name, Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me, With Or Without You, Moment Of Surrender.


At tonight's first show in Sydney, Australia, U2 perform "Stuck In A Moment" and dedicate it to Michael Hutchence, while later Bono snippets INXS's "Need You Tonight" and "Never Tear Us Apart". Later on Jay-Z joins U2 on stage again for "Sunday Bloody Sunday". Spotted at tonight's show are Oprah Winfrey, Nicole Kidman, Bob Geldof and Kanye West. The band performs "Do They Know It's Christmas" also, as Bob Geldof watches in the audience.

Media Review:

Sydney Morning Herald

U2 live in Sydney

by Bernard Zuel

It probably helps if you have the Pope on speed dial - direct line upstairs and all. While Oprah may be threatened by rain today, last night at the first of two massive outdoor shows at the Olympic stadium, U2 had only a zephyr breeze and blue skies.

Endless clear skies, of course, because the band who could probably repay Ireland's sovereign debt don't do things small or by half measures.

The stage is an island under a giant claw rippling with speakers and screens facing 360 degrees. There's an inner ring of devoted fans, an outer ring of jealous fans, and then the high-rising stands.

Unlike those troublemakers and rebels at the Jack Johnson concert, no one here has tempted fate with a rug or home-made food. Phew.

Incidentally, how big are U2? Forget measuring by ticket prices or beer sales, take a look at who the Irishmen get as their opening act.

Jay-Z, the hip-hop mogul, pop juggernaut and squire of a certain Beyonce, does not normally defer to anyone - "the best rapper alive" he says at one point. But here he is, "arming up" the crowd.

Admittedly this one punchy, brassy and loud support act, is not short of hits either. And for every rock-centred U2 fan sitting with a pained expression of the "why this hippety hop business, why?" variety there are two bouncing, making some noise and singing along with the sample from Forever Young.

If you're going to invite a giant presence to play before you, you either have balls of titanium or a show which blows away all comparisons.

Or maybe, if you are U2, both.

So you can come on stage to the strains of David Bowie's Space Oddity, strut about for several minutes to a locked groove before cutting the lights and kicking into Beautiful Day, a song whose chorus lifts off and parts the hairs of everyone downwind.

Yeah, they can do big. Big enough to mention Oprah en passant, to drop in a bit of the Beatles' Blackbird and then to make the 30-year-old I Will Follow sound like it was written during the current economic gloom, not the last one.

Big enough to make Jay-Z seem small.

That big enough for you?

© 2010 Sydney Morning Herald

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This page contains a single entry by Jonathan published on December 14, 2010 9:11 AM.

December 9, 2010 - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia - Suncorp Stadium was the previous entry in this blog.

December 14, 2010 - Sydney, New South Wales, Australia - ANZ Stadium is the next entry in this blog.

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