360 At The Rose Bowl

Day number 360 of the year, what else could I talk about today? One of the wildest extravaganzas in U2 history, but in an over the top way rather than a crazy ridiculous over the top way like say Popmart or Zoo TV were. I was driving into the Los Angeles airport a week ago and saw their oddly-shaped building in front, and immediately thought back to 360, to the Claw, and remembered that the building was a design inspiration for the stage. Yet another of those things where the band pops up when you least expect them.

U2 360 At The Rose Bowl was a great show. I remember watching it online the night it was on, it was a huge success as an online show. Wikipedia says that 10 million people watched the show online, which is an astounding number. I loved the show from start to finish, as I did when I saw it live in person. I must admit that it was a different experience in those days, seeing a couple of shows live and one online, vs seeing most of the tour online. Yes, kids, it wasn’t that long ago when you couldn’t watch every single show. And get off my lawn.

I never figured out why Breathe was cut from the DVD, when it was the original opener for the show. Given that Breathe was my favorite song from the album, that was very disappointing. As for the rest of it, there is a surprising correlation between the show and the current tour, roughly half of the songs have been repeated on a regular basis this year. I guess I shouldn’t say surprising, they are the standards, the songs that the band pretty much has to play each time since they are expected by the fans these days. Maybe I should therefore be surprised that they managed to get so many of the songs off the new album into the show.

And again, this is the first experience of seeing many of these songs live, watching them on this tour. I remember seeing some bootlegs of I’ll Go Crazy, and realizing that they were playing it in an entirely different manner than what was on the album. Then going to the show and seeing that version, and loving it, and being surprised that it was so different and so good, and wondering how that version came about. When I watched 360 in person, the two songs I recorded on my camera were Streets (as always) and Crazy, because I liked it so much.

I have talked before about the shows, how any live show automatically gets a perfect 10, and this is no exception. This is now the definitive version of the show, the one that will be remembered for all of history. 360 was a stadium show, and this video shows them in a great stadium setting, and shows off the Claw in a great way, and so we will remember this tour this way, and I think that’s a really good thing.

My rating for U2 360 At The Rose Bowl: 10 / 10