herald

Saturday 17 November 2018

Claw steals show as U2 rock Barcelona

Irish superstars U2 kicked off their world tour last night with a truly 'Magnificent' performance.

More than 90,000 fans from all over the globe packed into the awesome Nou Camp stadium in Barcelona to pay homage to the Dublin rock gods.

And even a major technical hitch in the middle of performing chart-topper One didn't throw them off their game.

The Herald can exclusively revel how charismatic frontman Bono was suddenly silenced while singing the number, due to interference from his earpiece.

As the packed stadium wondered what had brought about the halt in his performance, he told them: "We'll have to try that one again. I'm getting pitch information."

Screaming

He then told his bandmates "Can you all stop playing for a second please, I'll count you in," before resuming the rest of the song.

Luckily, the hordes of screaming fans were more reliable than some of the band's hardware, singing the lyrics for him while the problem was sorted out.

He was again hit with a second hitch during the second last song, With or Without You, where the sound failed again.

Taking it all in his stride, he even jokingly punched the mike swinging overhead in revenge.

Given the massive amount of anticipation surrounding the first night of their $100m (f71m) U2 360° tour, the atmosphere in the state-of-the-art stadium was truly electric.

And the spectacular show really was out of this world -- with the band even talking live to the international space station at one point.

Warming up the crowds beforehand were Belfast rockers Snow Patrol, before the superstars took to the stage to deafening cheers shortly after 9pm.

Sporting his trademark shades and with a new reddish tint to his hair, Bono bounded around the set with impressive enthusiasm.

But grabbing just as much attention was the spectacular set design of the Claw. The audience was transfixed by the giant structure, stretching more than 50m tall and covered in lasers.

A monster circular screen, which extended and contracted 40m, beamed images of the band's performance, ensuring no-one missed a thing.

The set list was a good mix of the old and the new, opening with the hit Breathe from their latest album.

But in true U2 fashion, they made sure to belt out a few of their most revered crowd-pleasers, including Angel of Harlem.

Emotional

Bono paid an emotional tribute to Michael Jackson, performing snippets from Man in the Mirror and Don't Stop Till You Get Enough.

Blasting out Ultraviolet and With or Without You in the final set, they ended the memorable evening with a rocking version of Moment Of Surrender.

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