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U2’s Innocence + Experience Tour Starts Tonight in Vancouver. So Where’s the Excitement?

Is it just me or is there are definite lack of buzz around the start of the latest U2 tour? I’m a fan–I have been since 1980–but for a reason I find both perplexing and disturbing, I find myself going “Meh.” And it’s not just me. I’ve spoken to hard longtime super-hardcore U2 fans and they feel the same way.

This is odd. Every U2 tour dating back to the mid-80s has been met by frenzied expectations, tons of hype and loads and loads of media coverage. But that seems to be lacking for Innocence + and Experience. We’re all rather flummoxed about this unusual ambivalence and we’ve been trying to analyze our change in attitude. Is it because

  • We’ve been underwhelmed by the last two albums?
  • The gap between No Line on the Horizon and Songs of Innocence was too long?
  • Of the Apple stunt with the release of SoI?
  • The knowledge that no tour by any band (not even U2) will ever match the spectacle of the 360 Tour?
  • We’ve been there, done that so many times before when it comes to U2 concerts?
  • That we’ve come to the conclusion that U2 is no longer the driving musical force they used to be?

I’m still a fan, of course, and I’ll end up seeing a couple of shows on this tour. But I’ll go just because it’s something I’ve always done, you know? On the other hand, though, maybe they’re off to just a slow start. Maybe things will build once the tour actually gets underway.

Or maybe not. Check out this article by Marsha Lederman in today’s Globe and Mail headlined in the paper (but not online) as “How Long Must They Sing This Song?”

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38516 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

3 thoughts on “U2’s Innocence + Experience Tour Starts Tonight in Vancouver. So Where’s the Excitement?

  • I think it’s because they aren’t getting the video and radio play to push it. The news is out there if you look for it. I had to really search for news but since they are in Vancouver, the excitement is building for me. I’ve been looking on YT,, listening to back catalogues to build my own enthusiasm.

  • I think for some, like me, going to see U2 is just what you do. Having seen them over 60 times on four continents, it’s just a bad habit now. So, here I am in Vancouver to see the opener, but I’m thinking more about a Denny’s grand slam than what the band will open with. Still, I made my way across the country (once again) just to see what they’re up to. These days attending a concert is really more tantamount to taking in a ball game. You know roughly what the length of the game will be and what the rules are. But you won’t know if it will be a pitchers dual or a blow out until game time. In a few hours, myself and the rest of the work will know.

  • Speaking of meh have you seen the setlist? Talk about underwhelming. Of course they’re going to play the hits but how about a few more of the deeper cuts. Frankly if all they played was Under a Blood Red Sky, Achtung Baby with a few cuts from Zooropa and Joshua I would gladly fork over some cash to see that.


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