Wednesday, July 13, 2011


U2 rocked Toronto on Monday night with their 360° Tour de force and their 360-degree stage in the shape of an alien spider.
The show came to town late since being postponed last year when Bono hurt his back. But the greatest showman/egomaniac on the face of the earth is back in shape (except for a little paunch) and looking good at 51. Say what you will, the man is charming and entertaining as hell (Mephisto?) – it’s no wonder he’s got the leaders of the world on speed-dial.

The rest of the guys have a certain regal-ness to them, a sort of “rock star royalty” stance. And seem to be all too happy to leave center stage for their ring leader. Scenes from the beginning of their career helped put in perspective where they are today and how these middle-aged guys can fill stadiums any day of the week anywhere with more than 60,000 people.

The concert was a string of hits and energetic performances by Bono. It was also a political free-for-all, mixing music and heavy-handed populism, with messages ranging from human rights to religion being systematically delivered in the 360-degree screen above the band. You could also sign up for Amnesty International initiatives during pre- and post-show.

Bono called Canadians “idealists,” praised their “leadership” and declared his love for the country.

A great show and not as much spectacle as I expected, despite cameos from astronauts from the International Space Station and the incredible, stretching, 360-degree screen which enveloped the band and turned the stadium into a disco tornado.  The band came out for two (pre-scheduled) encores.

Here’s a couple of great moments from the show.

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