U2 @ The Staples Center, Los Angeles CA 04/05/05
This was my third Vertigo Tour gig, and only the sixth show the entire tour. I don’t think U2 has ever toured California so extensively, they’ve truly spoiled us this time around. I was able to score tickets off Ebay for all 4 Vertigo Tour concerts, all reasonable deals by the way and decent seats. It was nearly impossible trying to buy tickets off ticketmaster when they originally went on sale. A snafu occurred, and it was a free for all for scalpers and resellers. Larry Mullen Jnr. went as far as to apologize for the ticketing issue during the 2005 Grammys.
The Staples Center gig was a solid one, however the sound quality left something to be desired and security was over the top. People were being asked to put their cameras away and the pat downs at the door were very thorough, they weren’t taking any chances. The band performed well and they’ve more or less found their rhythm by now and were delivering the shows with confidence and consistency. The opener was changed to “Love and Peace or Else,” a welcomed surprise after the familiar starting points of the other concerts. An older gentleman was sitting to my right. We said hello and he asked if I’d ever seen the band before. I happily reported this was my third show this tour. He said “Wow! Then they’re really good!”
It was another good experience and it’s quite extraordinary to see this group, this legendary, larger than life group recreate the music you’ve adored all these years. Of special note is the usage of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights video that’s used as the segue into “Pride.” On screen, a child reads aloud sections of the declaration concerning freedom from slavery. This part of the show was further proof that U2 will always wear their hearts on their sleeves. Whether you find things like that cool or uncool, appropriate or not, U2 will always be that socio-political group at its core, wanting to change the world however they can.
Main Set: Love and Peace or Else, Vertigo – Stories for Boys, Elevation, Cry – The Electric Co., An Cat Dubh – Into the Heart, City of Blinding Lights, Beautiful Day, Miracle Drug, Sometimes You Can’t Make it On Your Own, New Year’s Day, Sunday Bloody Sunday, Bullet the Blue Sky – Hands That Built America, Running to Stand Still, Zoo Station, The Fly, Mysterious Ways
Encore(s): Pride, Where the Streets Have No Name, One, All Because of You, Yahweh, 40
The following photos were taken by fans the night of 04/05 and submitted to the U2tours web page for posting.