Hippodrome, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Set List of Show:
- "Even Better Than the Real Thing"
- "The Fly"
- "Mysterious Ways"
- "Until the End of the World"
- "I Will Follow"
- "Get On Your Boots"
- "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"
- "Stay (Faraway, So Close!)"
- "Beautiful Day"
- "Pride (In the Name of Love)"
- "Miss Sarajevo"
- "City Of Blinding Lights"
- "I'll Go Crazy if I Don't Go Crazy Tonight"
- "Sunday Bloody Sunday"
- "Walk On"
- "Where the Streets Have No Name"
- "Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me"
- "With or Without You"
- "Moment of Surrender"
Pre-Recorded Intro Song: "Space Oddity" - David Bowie
Pre-Recorded Exit Song: "Rocket Man" - Elton John
Snippets of Other Songs Performed by U2:
"Tryin' to Throw Your Arms Around the World" (U2) /
"Anthem" (Leonard Cohen) /
"Where Have All The Flowers Gone" (Pete Seeger and Joe Hickerson) /
"Surrender" () /
"The Promised Land" (Bruce Springsteen) /
"Space Oddity" (David Bowie) /
"Discothèque" (U2) /
"Life During Wartime" (Talking Heads) /
"Psycho Killer" (Talking Heads) /
"You'll Never Walk Alone" (from Carousel by Rodgers and Hammerstein) /
"Will You Love Me Tomorrow" (The Shirelles) /
"Rain" (The Beatles) /
This is the first of two shows in Montreal, Quebec. It is the last time that the U2360 will do two shows in the same city, and after Montreal all of the shows are single nights in the remaining cities. Opening both of the shows in Montreal is Interpol.
The venue for the show is an old horse racing track that is being redeveloped, Hippodrome de Blue Bonnets, as the Olympic Stadium was not available. The track has not held any horse races since mid-2009. Originally scheduled for 2010, this show was postponed when Bono hurt his back and required surgery, and that delay has also delayed the building of condos at the site. The show had originally been planned for July 16, 2010 with Interpol. The bleachers in use for the show on the sides and front and back are metal, and some fans mention that they felt less than secure as the crowd started to dance and things started to sway.
Band introductions saw the band introduced as members of the British Royal Family, “Tonight we begin our royal tour. We are the Irish princes!” (all in French at that!) Larry Mullen was compared to Prince William, while Adam Clayton was compared to his wife Kate Middleton. The Edge was described as The Prince of Wales, hailing from Wales himself. Bono said that he was like one of the Queen’s corgi pups.
The day is a beautiful sunny, hot day, but in the evening clouds move in and rain becomes a threat. As Bono finishes “Moment of Surrender” the skies open up and a torrential rain starts to fall, accompanied by a quick drop in temperatures, soaking the audience as they attempt to make their way home from the venue. At the end of “Moment of Surrender” Bono and The Edge duet for a brief piece of “Rain” as the skies open up.
Snippets tonight include “Tryin’ To Throw Your Arms Around the World” during “Mysterious Ways”, “Anthem” and “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” during “Until the End of the World”, “Surrender” during “I Will Follow”, and “The Promised Land” during “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For”. “Space Oddity” makes an appearance in “Beautiful Day” both through video from the International Space Station and later by Bono repeating the message from the video. “I’ll Go Crazy” includes “Discotheque”, “Life During Wartime” and “Psycho Killer” and “You’ll Never Walk Alone” is part of “Walk On”. “Will You Love Me Tomorrow” opens “Where the Streets Have No Name” and a snippet of “Rain” finishes out “Moment of Surrender” as the rain starts.
In The Montreal Gazette Bernad Perusse writes, “Sure, the outer stage setup allowed Bono to reach out, Messiah-like, to his people. But for all the ‘St. Bono’ jibes that go around, there remains an astonishing positive energy that comes with a U2 concert. In many cases, the audience singalong is an irritant, but the sound of 80,000 taking part of a verse and the chorus on I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For transcends cliché. Similarly, a communally sang Pride (In the Name of Love) ended with the audience carrying on the song’s wordless chant long after the group had stopped playing.” He also shares, “The concert demonstrated a wonderful use of motion and video that went some way toward fulfilling the group’s promise to make the oversized venue intimate. And if a monsoon broke out at the end of the night, well that was just awesome.”
Of the show Willie Williams shares in his U2.com diary, “This home-built venue ended up working quite well. Transportation was a bit of an issue but nothing close to what we’ve seen before at other similarly placed proper stadia (Istanbul leaps to mind). The Quebecois entered in their thousands and the place developed a really positive festival atmosphere. The excitement was palpable and infectious – everyone just seemed to be in such a great mood. This translated into a fantastic gig – it sounds daft, but going on my nightly walkabout, I was struck by just how happy everybody in the audience seemed to be. All this and a spontaneous rain-storm-tornado to finish off the evening, though mercifully this squall had the good manners to wait until (literally the second) that I’d got into my van in the end-of-show ‘runner’.”
Ahead of the show The Edge reportedly practiced some material, including “Zooropa”, “City of Blinding Lights”, “The Fly” and did some work on “Glastonbury”, the new song not played since 2010. But Willie Williams says that the band members did not come in for a sound check, so if it was The Edge, he was likely there by himself at the time.
The show was initially announced on October 26, 2009, but no venue was announced at that time. The Hippodrome was confirmed as a venue on November 16, 2009 ahead of ticket sales. Tickets went on sale on November 21, 2009, with a U2.Com presale starting on November 18, 2009.
Setup of the temporary staging and stands for this venue started on May 6, 2009, and involved 18 Quebec companies, with U2’s team arriving on July 2 to inspect the site and prepare for setup of the claw stage. In a report from Journal de Montreal it was shared, “U2 requested that the venue offer the same comfort as the conventional stadiums that hosted the band’s world tour” which includes restaurants, toilets, ATMs, ticket offices and first aid station. U2 paid the construction costs for the temporary stadium. The bleachers could accommodate 40,000 people, and the other 41,000 available tickets were floor tickets.
Officially Released Tracks