Thursday, May 21, 2015

An "exotic and exquisite" worship service: "I feel like a fraud, but I know that I'm not" . I'm actually just looking for my "inner human condition" and the God Particle in the City of Blinding Colliders

photo credit, Shawn Farmer

Here are some of my thoughts, pics and videos  (some by others) of  U2's " Innocence and Experience" tour  5/19/15 San Jose (second night) stop.

It's only four nights into the tour, and as Gavin Friday quipped, "It usually takes six nights for the Baby to become Achtung."

I think this time the Mojo is  already in the house, as is the Baby.
Premature, but healthy.

Also...Second nights (or third, fourth...of fifth)  by U2 in the same city are often characterized as "walking all over the first night."  (see "U2 is good, not great in San Jose"night 1) .  Thi sometimes reminds me of what Mark DeRaud used to call the fourth (of our four Sunday church  services (they went from very traditional to traditional to contemporary to...uh, very contemporary): "the exotic service."   For U2, it's a bit looser (as far as nerves),  tighter (as far as music) , and sometimes that results in  more  Spiritaneous setlist moments.  Tonight was, as Tim Neufeld tweeted me below, exquisite.

Tim N  also catches  a  liturgical phenomenon that can happen with the night one vs night two: "Where the first night in Vancouver reminded me of the fallenness of our humanity, the second restored a sense of hope. "   Bono once told Rolling Stone, "They call it the rhema. It’s a hard word to translate from Greek, but it sort of means it changes in the moment you’re in. It seems to do that for me."
Edge:It's funny how you take an old song, but it in a different part of the set, and it suddenly has a new meaning."

Sitting next to me was another Tim,  my son --a Periscope  broadcasting star who had  hundreds of viewers from all over the world!  (Check to see if his video is still viewable).

It's impossible..and should be illegal.. to unpack a concert by U2.
(I still haven't come home from my first!)
I won't even try.
Just a few highlights this time..

I won't even go in chronological/liturgical order..

But I know which song to start with:


...but where to start in commenting on this Bad 6.0 version.
(Note that in The Matrix,  Neo was the sixth..and final.. iteration in a series of candidates to be "The One")

As Tim Neufeld noted:

Bad, which the other night (Second night, Vancouver) had the amazing addiction-recovery altar call (see this), tonight's version (unplanned, as you can tell by the first moments..) had  this tearful "Into The Mystic" intro followed by the "This is a song of surrender..Whatever it is you want to let go of tonight, let it go free! are being freed. ...Our music, God gave us it.."   invitation/prelude,,   (Not sure what he says at 27-30 sec mark. Anybody? "it's just dissonance"?):

A vintage interview:

 Do you occasionally lose control when you’re singing? Not get out of control, but you just get so transported into the song.

 That’s when it’s good. When it’s good you don’t know it’s happening. It really is an extraordinary thing because it seems to require no effort. And of course the other side of it is you can bump into some aspects of your character that you’d rather not have bumped into.

 What are you trying to do with the audience?

 To lose my own sense of self, self-consciousness – and theirs. It’s an amazing thing. We’re not really a rock & roll band. We’re pretending to be a rock & roll band, and sometimes we get away with it.
Sometimes a song like “Desire” or “Vertigo” will arrive, and you go, Whoa! That’s rock & roll! But what we actually do is something completely different. Our set list is designed in a kind of three-act structure, to get people out of themselves and to get ourselves out of ourselves. And to get to that place where everything feels possible and you want to call your mother, leave your wife, start a revolution or crack open the piggy bank and go on holiday for a year. link

Hmm..Second night; fourth service; third act..
or as Edge just said:
"There's really four different phases within the show of quite different feelings. Then we're tying it together. Making the emotional arc of it work is the real challenge."

At one point, it sounds like they were plotting a lot more moments  (technological and lyrical) throughout the songs and show  where the older Bono(or band) would talk to their younger selves, and vice versa) . Even though Bono  obviously "talked" to his younger self at one point "Song for Someone" (which took the song to a whole new level (of many) meanings,  some of the moments would be harder to these new lyrics in the "Bullet" rant:

So this boy comes up to me,
His face red like a rose on a thorn bush,
A young man with a young man's blush,
Young boy looked a lot like me.

And he's pulling the dollar bills outta my hand,
Patting me down, patting me down,
Says you have more than you need!
You got 100, you got 200, 300

And I can see those private planes,
I can see those private planes,
And you're in one of those private planes aren't you?
And he's right.

And I'm off a flight in Davos, Switzerland,
I'm in the lobby of the Belvedere Hotel,
Where a jazz-man breathes into his saxophone,
While everybody stares at their cell phone,
And in my ear the young boy groans,

Outside it's America!
Outside it's America!


As I step outside, snow is falling like a curtain of silence
I'm on the other side of the barricade now,
I'm on the other side of the barricade to myself, aged 19, n-n-n-n-nineteen

And I try to tell the young man,
that ideas deserve a plan,
And to build a better world,
It's gonna take every woman and man

It's gonna take you, me,
The reds and the greens,
The nows and forevers and the yet-to-bes
The "where ya going?"
The "where ya been?"
The living and the dead, and the unseen
The somebodies,
The nobodies,
The who's who,
The Gentile and the Jew,
The gays and the straights,
The sevens and the eights,
The nines and the tens,
The Dollars and the Yens,

And I feel like a fraud, but I know that I'm not,

I try to do my very

with everything I've got, which is not a lot,
to not get caught,
with my pants down,
 my hands up, my hands up

Any second now,
Things are going to get rough,
So I run, I run, I run,
Into the arms, of America  link

Sherry said:

Bono’s channeling his inner hypocrite, changing the lyrics from “fighter planes” to “private planes,” shifting the focus from military interest to the Occupy Wall Street movement. “You’ve got more than you need” is part of Bono’s rap. It’s a conversation he’s having with his 19-year-old self who would see him now and condemn him, and his 55-year-old self is explaining the purpose behind it all. He’s trying to reconcile that he’s become the thing he protested all those decades ago. The reinvention of this song is outstanding. - See more at:


The core idea behind the Innocence + Experience tour is this movement from "them and us" to "there is no them, only us."
When we were younger our enemies were clearly drawn, very visible to us. They were very real, they weren't imagined. And we organized against them, whether that's with Amnesty International or anti-apartheid groups. As you get older, you start to discover that the greatest enemy you will encounter in your life is often yourself. You are the biggest obstacle in your own way. Suddenly then the landscape changes. I don't know who wrote the line, "I have met my enemy and it's partly right," but it's a great line. It's a book title. When there's no clearly defined "us" and "them," the world changes shape. It's harder to negotiate. It's really your own hypocrisy in the crosshairs. We started that journey with Achtung Baby and Zoo TV. It continues today, but what's happened recently is that I've personally been revisiting the black-and-white monochrome days, because I miss that person.

I'll give you a lyric from [the upcoming U2 album] Songs of Experience. "I was living a lie. I was calling it a compromise. I was making bad deals in front of everyone's eyes. Deals now everyone denies. I was giving evidence in the court of the hearts desire, falsifying documents, virtue thrown in the fire. Sometimes I wish that I was stupid and you were not so smart. Overcome the head will always overcome the heart." The chorus goes, "Lead me in the way I should go. I'm running out of chances to blow. That's what you told me and you should know. Lead me in the way I should be. Unravel the mystery of the heart and its defense. The morning after innocence." The song is called "The Morning After Innocence."
Then it goes, "Is that your fountain pen? Navy with a nib of gold. Could you write your name again and do anything you were told in 10 Cedarwood Road. I'm your older self, the song of experience. I've come to ask for help from your song of innocence. Lead me in the way I should go. I'm running out of chances to blow. That's what you told me and you should know."
So, the older self is coming and asking the younger one for hope. It's interesting. It's a reverse. That happens in this show. What happens in this show is the younger self harangues, harasses, the older self. That's what we were just practicing out there trying to figure out in "Bullet the Blue Sky." The guy who used to be on the barricades in black and white comes up to the guy who is on the other side of the barricades and says, "What are you doing here?" He says, "It takes everybody. It takes the blues, the greens, the me's, the you." He goes into this rant. That's the dialectic at the heart of the tour from a lyrical perspective.

Read more: 


In  a delightful, cross-framed moment during "City Of Blinding Lights,"the boy  ("innocence" incarnate) Bono brought up on stage (as promised  earlier in the day, see video here.. start at 2 min mark), teased Bono about one of his trademarked and "experienced" grownup bad self poses.>> 

Sherry caught this:
video footage from the Higgs Boson Collider appeared to be used for “City Of Blinding Lights,” a song with overtones about heaven, with visuals of a collider trying to find the God particle - See more at:
Photo: Tim N

Tell me about it.  To me, the film on the screen   during "Streets" showed creation/our current city-creation..including the Joshua Tree... with a  collider/transmitter/transporter to  New Creation/heaven/heavens..

..or something like that. (:
photo Tim N

Someone captured this, see 3:37ff...and the rock(Rock)/mountain (Mountain) at 5:32ff? Love it:

Some of my brief clips:

Posted by Dave Wainscott on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

U2 "End of the World"
San Jose 5/19/15..a new twist on the Jesus and Judas scene
Posted by Dave Wainscott on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

U2 "Where the Streets Have No Name" intro
Posted by Dave Wainscott on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Posted by Dave Wainscott on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

U2 Cedarwood Road
Bono inside the screen, walking the road he grew up on. "Come with me, see the road I should've grown up on.."
Posted by Dave Wainscott on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

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