468x60 General & Logo

Bathed in 1980s glory, U2 fans find what they’re looking for

The band walked down an aisle one by one on Wednesday night at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara as if they were in a wedding processional, each joining an extended instrumental opening of “Sunday Bloody Sunday.” (With a handful of children to document the night in future parental eulogies.) Every one of the 16 pre-encore selections was recorded in 1983, 1984 or 1987; if you owned a stereo during the Ronald Reagan presidency, chances are you made out, weathered a bad breakup or sampled your first Bartles & Jaymes wine cooler while listening to one of these songs. “A Sort of Homecoming” and “Bad” from “The Unforgettable Fire” were a comparative drag, before the band regained momentum with “Pride (In the Name of Love)” and launched into “The Joshua Tree” album. Some of the lesser-known tracks shined the brightest - particularly the energetic “Bullet the Blue Sky” and building momentum of “Exit,” which has always been at least 40 percent better live than it was on the album. The track gained new life with The Edge switching from guitar to keyboard and Bono’s voice, a little more husky with age and the cold night air, adding a lovely vulnerability. The stage show built as the night went on, with the band performing on a spare center platform without digital accessories for the first five songs, before turning on a panoramic video screen that had the square footage and dimensions of an aircraft carrier runway. Bono’s familiarity with the crowd gained momentum as the night went on, shouting out the head of Glide Memorial Church in the middle of “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” (“The Reverand Cecil Williams is in the house!”) and ending the concert with a personal thank you to what seemed like every local tech pioneer who ever lived.

Article by By Peter Hartlaub (c) Entertainment - Read full story here.