U2 concert pix

Here are some pictures from this Wednesday’s U2 concert at the new Meadowlands Stadium in New Jersey, delayed by one year due to Bono’s back surgery.

Even with the balmy weather, it was a brilliant show.

That expensive claw device that they designed to give their stadium show audiences a 360 degree experience was well worth the 200 trucks and 400 tons of equipment comprising it.

Part accordeon-like expanding jumbotron screen,

part light show, part theater-in-the-round, The Claw and the band made a show for tens of thousands of fans feel like a much more intimate experience.

And, at times, I found the vertical pole at the top of The Claw reminded me of a cathedral spire:

While we waited for the band to take to the stage, the massive flexible screen above the stage had a zipper of global locations and times rolling by, including this mention of India:

and here, closer:

But finally, some time past 9:30pm, the boys arrived,

striding into the arena like the conquering heroes that they are:

…and they proceeded to entertain us for a good two hours plus, including two encores and multiple costume changes for Bono:

…given how much he was moving about, and the heat, it’s understandable:

At times, there were even two Bonos…

Dave Evans, a.k.a. The Edge…

For Mysterious Ways, instead of the belly dancer who became The Edge’s wife, the band now have these trippy images, somewhat reminiscent of the opening credits of a Bond movie:

Two years ago, at their last show in NJ at the old Meadowlands, the concert programmes included paper masks of the then-imprisoned Aung San Suu Kyi that fans were urged to hold up to their own faces at one point during the show, as Bono summoned the crowd to sign up that night to join Amnesty International and speak out on her behalf.

Two years later, she is free and on Wednesday night, there was a video greeting from the Lady Shri Ram College grad herself, thanking the audience for their efforts and reminding them that there are still several thousand others in prison in Burma:

The stadium was full:

and the fans (people of all ages, from kids, to people in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s) had a great time:

This being New Jersey, one fan up front had made a sign that said “For Clarence” – a tribute to the recently departed Clarence Clemons.

During one of the encores, Bono said “Where’s that sign?” and he went and retrieved it, while commenting to the audience his love for the formidable saxophonist in Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.  He then placed the sign against Larry Mullen’s drum platform:

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