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U2’s eight-show MSG run underway: pics, setlist, video from Saturday’s kickoff show

photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin

U2 @ MSG 7/18/2015
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At Madison Square Garden on Saturday, the first of eight nights there through July 31 — the tour has already been through nine other North American cities and then heads to Europe — U2 has two stages to work with at opposite ends of the room, and a walkway between them. That’s already a worn strategy in big-audience concert production.

But the conceit here is to consistently merge the two stages, in a sense, and to engage the entire space visually, sonically and thematically, through the interplay of many other opposites extrapolated from the central one. These include past and present, obscurity and fame, peace and war, audience and band, punk and statesman, grass-roots activism and corporate philanthropy, live action and animation. Basically, where the band saw a perceived division, it tried to erode it. – [NY Times]

U2 kicked off their eight-night run at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, bringing the spectacle of the “INNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE” tour to NYC. Opening with “The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)” from the band’s most recent album, the nearly three-hour show pulled from throughout their long career, including hits, deep cuts and a dusting-off of “October” which hadn’t been played live since 1989. In the crowd: Jon Bon Jovi, Salman Rushdie and Harry Belafonte. Setlist and pics from the show are in this post.

Taking tonight and Tuesday off, U2 resume their MSG run on Wednesday (7/22) and Thursday (7/23) and then July 26, 27, 30 and 31. Tickets are still available. More pictures, and video of them performing “Pride (In the Name of Love),” at MSG on Saturday, below…

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SETLIST: U2 @ Madison Square Garden
The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone)
The Electric Co.
Vertigo
I Will Follow
Iris (Hold Me Close)
Cedarwood Road
Song for Someone
Sunday Bloody Sunday
Raised by Wolves
Until the End of the World
The Fly
Invisible
Even Better Than the Real Thing
Mysterious Ways
Elevation
Ordinary Love
October
Every Breaking Wave
With or Without You
City of Blinding Lights
Bullet the Blue Sky
Pride (In the Name of Love)

Encore:
Beautiful Day
Where the Streets Have No Name
One

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