Review: U2 360 Tour Seville - 30-10-2010

There are concerts and there are concerts and this would be the latter. Already well into their two year worldwide 360 tour, U2 arrived to the capital of southern Spain Seville, ready to unleash their audio visual spectacle on the waiting crowds.

Indeed it was apparent that this was going to be well attended, as we noticed the number of fans clad with U2 attire, strolling the streets of Seville. Newsmedia later reported a crowd 80,000 strong.

With time to spare we took the short walk from our hotel to the venue the Olympic Stadium, which was starting to fill up in time for the support act Interpol who played their set with energy and style.

After the 45 minute set a large analogue style clock appeared on the giant screen amidst the 360 stage dubbed as the “claw” and we wondered whether it was a countdown?

Indeed we were right, once the countdown finished the clock dismantled itself, shattered and then after a minute or so whilst David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” played at full volume over the PA system U2 walked calmly onto the stage amongst a thunderous applause.

Space Oddity” then morphed into “Return of the Stingray Guitar”, which followed in “Beautiful Day” at which point the crowd erupted into an ecstatic frenzy.

The band then went through a set list outlining the best of U2s hits from classics like “I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For” to newer numbers like “Get on your boots” from their latest album “No line on the Horizon”. We saw Bono at his very best despite maintaining that he had a hangover! This did not stop him pulling a girl on stage as he does each night, this time to sing to her ‘Spanish Eyes’ during “In a Little While “before beautifully transforming himself into an opera singer for “Miss Sarajevo”, an emotional piece from the experimental Passengers album during we which we had a link up to the International Space Station and some wonderful space visuals overhead. Then as that song faded we were into ‘City of Blinding Lights’ a powerful crowd pleaser from the HTDAAB album where the circular screen dropped into an elongated cone of sparkling lights above the band’s head whilst they worked their instruments below. My personal favourite of the evening was “Magnificent” from the latest album with its classic Edge delay laden guitar lines and hard hitting riffs.

The band went to finish with two encores including “Ultraviolet” where Bono used a special microphone dropped from above the claw with light effects shining bring light at his face whilst his special jacket radiated red laser lights around the stage. No wonder he wears shades all the time!

The music was complimented by an astounding light and visual display, which U2 have specialised and become the masters of over the last 20 years since the groundbreaking ZOO TV tour in the early 1990’s, something that really sets their concerts apart from anything else. Even if you are unfazed by the music, a concert by this band is well worthwhile for these very expensive visuals. The giant claw like structure which overwhelms you as you walk into the venue, with the giant 360 screen which expands with the amazing light show costs a cool 20 million Euros to design and construct, and U2 built three of them to enable the tour to move swiftly round the globe. The building and dismantling process taking eight days for each three hour show! That’s show business, or crazy business who knows?

The audience was loud and very receptive at times some of the sing along choruses, to which they knew all the words, where practically louder than the band itself. Not bad going considering the awesome wattage bearing down on them.

Another nice touch was the translation in Spanish of all the dialogue on both live and from the pre-recorded messages together with Bono introducing the band and comparing them to top Spanish football players this certainly got the crowd going. He chose Sergio Ramos for his persona.

Gear wise The Edge went through a formidable array of guitars for his performance such as his trademark Gibson Explorer, and black Strat for the older numbers. Other guitars included a white telecaster, a Les Paul, SG and Rickenbacker 330

Adam Clayton also used an array of Fender Basses (Mostly with sparkle finishes), an Epiphone Jack Casady bass, and also his signature buzzard bass also made famous by the late great John Entwhistle of “The Who

All in all a great concert experience not to be forgotten. Now the tour moves on to Mexico and the States before going down to Australia and New Zealand, following which each “Claw” will be left as a permanent concert venue where and when the circus stops!

By Ernest H Slade and Nick Gale.
www.gear-review.co.uk

Full Set List

Return of the Stingray Guitar
Beautiful Day
New Year's Day
Get On Your Boots
Magnificent
Mysterious Ways
Elevation
Until The End Of The World
I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
North Star (An Acoustic Version)
Mercy
In A Little While
Miss Sarajevo
City Of Blinding Lights
Vertigo
I'll Go Crazy If I Don't Go Crazy Tonight (Remix)
Sunday Bloody Sunday
MLK
Walk On

Encore

One
Where The Streets Have No Name

Encore 2

Ultraviolet (Light My Way)
With Or Without You
Moment Of Surrender