U2 News: U2 360 ° – The biggest show on earth

The biggest show on earth? At least, the numbers speak clear language: with a turnover of more than 730 million euros, the 360 ​​° turn is the highest turn of all time.

What time is it in the world? – In any case, 10 years (!) Have passed since The claw celebrated its premiere at Camp We in Barcelona. Time for a personal exam.

Let us in the sound – The Edge and Adam on the claw (Photo: Sabine for U2tour.de)

So much in advance: I clearly answer the initial question with a clear YES. The 360 ​​° tour was, in my opinion, the biggest show of all time, nor my favorite ZooTV until then, nor did the huge Pink Floyd concerts that I visited could give him the # 39; water. The monster created here by Willie Williams and Mark Fisher covers everything that happens in the scenography category. Regardless of the size and complexity of concert production to date, the 360-degree tour has never existed. For me, it was nothing short of a break in the history of live tours.

Some facts:

  • Overall, the Belgian company Stageco and the American company have built three stages; each was over 51m tall
  • the outer gateway ring was 147.5 meters long
  • the scene could carry a weight of 200 tons
  • 120 trucks were needed for transportation
  • the cost of each of the three stages was about 30 million dollars
  • The crew consisted of 137 permanent employees, plus 120 temporary employees.
  • Due to the open design of the scene, the capacity of the sites could be increased by 15 to 20%
  • the video screen contained more than a million pieces, including 411,000 pixels
  • It is estimated that the tour produced 65,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide; U2 worked with carbonfootprint.com together and made compensation payments to offset the environmental impact.
  • the greenish outer skin of the building covered an area of ​​1500 m²
You will find detailed information on the system "Claw", its lighting and sound in our SPECIAL guide


Accelerated video of the construction of the claw and impressions of the show

The numbers speak for themselves: only the height of construction has more than doubled the previous record holder, the Rolling Stones' Bigger Bang Stage has more than doubled. Higher, bigger, heavier … the 360 ​​° scene is a superlative!

But size alone is not everything! Bombast does not guarantee quality and emotions often fail. The intimate atmosphere of a club can be far superior to the gigantomania of a stadium tour. U2 in the reduced setting of altitude or even without the Apollo Theater: these moments are often unforgettable.

And yet, the 360 ​​° tour will always have a special place in my heart. It is very much the musical counterpart of what the fairy tale of the summer of 2006 represented for my passion for football. Although I only had a limited number of concerts compared to some fellow fans with seven concerts, the 2009/2010 years were probably the most intense and beautiful of my career as a U2 trailer.

Sing your heart (Photo: Hans for U2tour.de)

Of course, the first of my tour in Milan was predestined to be outdated. Although I remember the show as one of the weakest, the view of the scene from the top of San Siro was breathtaking. In the largest stadium in Italy, whose height overlooks the city as a whole, the claw actually seemed proportionally normal; for that, the design and effects of light came from my home.

The different effect of the stage in the different rooms is for me one of the memories of the tour dar: in San Siro, the dimensions of the monster in Berlin have been fully exploited. In Amsterdam, the building occupied more than half of the interior. In Zurich, the ratio to the height of the stadium in Letzigrund seemed surreal – a monster of almost 52 meters, in a stadium whose roof is half the height. Frankfurt, on the other hand, was fascinated by the situation at the airport gateway when a giant plane was sliding on the roof of the stage.

The claw, Croke Park Dublin © Profile of Kristian Strobech, U2 360 ° Tour at Croke Park, CC BY 2.0

As versatile as the effect of the scene in different environments: the perception of the show from different points of view. Whether under one of the parade's movable decks, farther inland with front view or on a seat at the edge of the stage, the tour offered many perspectives and each had its own unique charm. The concept of the stage was not true, as "360" as the name suggests, but the spectators "behind" the stage were clearly against the direction of the show, but compared to the price of 35 euros, they also had for their money. The ultimate goal was the intention to reduce the distance between the group and the public, successfully implemented in my eyes. Those who queued very early and in the true sense of the word felt that they had the right to be part of the "inner circles" and were in fact at the heart of the situation instead of being part of it.


IAdam Wears that velvet dress – The Jazzman on one of the bridges of the 360 ​​° scene
(Photo: Hans for U2tour.de)

Ground control at Major Tom – who lands with the futuristic claw in the stadiums of this world, who probably would not have been able to choose a more appropriate song as an introduction. Bowie's classic, followed by Soon, is inextricably linked to the 360 ​​° Tour since then, a moment of panic each time. As for the first game, I would have liked that Breathe had no place for the return of Stingray Instrumental Guitar. Larry's solo entry was to my taste the best entry.

By selecting the song, I was on the entire content,
especially during the first stage because with Unknown Caller, one of my
Favorite numbers appear regularly in the setlist. 2010 surprised the group for the positive, presenting at least four new songs with North Star, Every Breaking Wave, Mercy and Glastonbury. That performance is often a bit bumpy, forgive, the joy of hearing new content clearly wins.

At one stage of this technical scale, the design of the scene indirectly determines the selection of the song, and some numbers may seem lost in this backdrop. That's what happened with In A Little While, one of my favorites, but he could not convince me on this tour. A song that seemed to be written for the label and therefore my personal strength: until the end of the world. With the power consumed by the scene on this song, you would probably have been able to power a small town for a year, but every kilowatt hour was worth it;)


They found grace in a sound: The Edge and Larry during the 360 ​​° tour (Photos: Sabine for U2tour.de)

Other songs have even gained in quality in the setting of the claw – City Of Blinding Lights, for me, it's more a candidate for stroke, but in the context of the 360 ​​° tour, he told me convinced.

Ironically, the most played song is also the one I miss most: I'm going crazy if I do not go crazy tonight is at the top of the list of 111 performances in 110 concerts – the second concert in Barcelona in addition to remix in the middle of the series, the version of the album played in the block again. I would have liked to hear this last more often. The goal of the remix, according to Bono, was to disorient the audience between two setlist blocks. Although it seemed impressive visually and dramaturgically: For me, the direction was clear: during the remix, I went directly to the toilet or to have a drink 🙂

Bono exchanging his jacket in ultraviolet light for a Schweinsteiger jersey
(Left picture: Sabine for U2tour.de, right picture: Conny Wittmann for U2tour.de)

The group certainly had surprises in store with two numbers that were exchanged in the recall block: Ultraviolet and Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me and Kill Me had been broadcast live for the last time at Zoo TV or Popmart Tower. What I would also like to be the only disadvantage of the tour from my point of view: when no other tour of U2 I missed so painfully the songs of Pop and Zooropa. Just imagine: Lemon on the yellowed claw or Numb with Edge Close-Up on the cylindrical video screen, Last Night On Earth or Gone using spots and strobes – what possibilities! This Zooropa was added to the setlist in the end – but above that, it would have been possible to have more.

To appear, I remember various judgments, some very damning. I might have just been lucky, but what Joe O 'Herlihy managed to pull from this huge sound system was almost convincing in my shows. The challenge of providing complete 360-degree coverage was, of course, enormous and marked by a lot of learning by doing. The claims of O & # 39; Herlihy were high from the start: "Sound quality, high dynamic range and clear stage sound". To make sure, the team relied on a brand new technology, a fundamental break from the system that O 'Herlihy had used during previous tours of the stadiums. . If everyone at the end was satisfied with the result and I would not judge, for that I'm not the only one to be meticulous enough. In any case, many experts have said that this tour redefined the sound of the stadium.

Fans play Angel of Harlem on the 360 ​​° stage in Berlin (Photo: Conny Wittmann for U2tour.de)

Overall, I have wonderful memories of the 360 ​​° tour. Never before has a live production fascinated me so much, never before
I'm having so much fun gathering friends and acquaintances for the first time
Taking a concert of U2 – 360 ° was a thrill in this regard
Number, astonished faces and incredulous looks.

The highlights that come to me spontaneously in mind: the performance of Angel Of Harlem by three fans at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin, the perfect Italian part of Bono, while Miss Sarajevon at San Siro, the creative performance members of the group, the pleasure of playing every show, Adam shirtless at Zurich Rain, a show that even any heterosexual man can probably doubt his sexual orientation;) and of course: Snow Patrol! Snow Patrol, the best support U2 has ever had. Where the group opened for U2 was held with "Run" one of the highlights before Bono, Edge, Adam and Larry entered the scene.

Snow Patrol loves Amsterdam (Photo: Daniel for U2tour.de)

Small flat: to refresh the images in my head, I will probably have to take pictures regularly or Youtube, because the official movie "Live at Rose Bowl" is in my eyes the worst U2 publication to date. All that made the tour so unique and fantastic, I still can not find it in the approach. That's why I'm grateful for all the good memories I've kept of U2's "four-legged spaceship". Whenever I think back to the time, "the band plays a striptease in my head."

And then there is the photo of the tour:

360 ° Tour of the Berlin Olympic Stadium © Ralph Larmann

A picture is worth a thousand words – if I described the 360-degree tour with one motive, it would be Ralph Larrmann's recording. When the disco ball stopped in the Berlin Olympic Stadium due to a technical flaw, Larmann was in the right place at the right time and pulled the trigger. Her photo not only appealed to the group, the team members and the fans, but also the title of the official program of the tour. An interview, which led U2tour.de at the time with Ralph Larmann, can be found HERE, on his website at www.larmann.com, and on his Facebook account HERE. And those who, like me, can not tire of the 360 ​​° visit and do not have it yet, warmly recommend the book – U2 – The 360 ​​° Tour (Around the world in 760 days – The official photo book) & # 39 ;.

"Science Learning Campus" – new home of the label © Liveland Living Planet Aquarium

When I turned one last time after the Zurich show to have one last look on stage, it was like saying goodbye to a beloved friend forever. The claw will be a new home in Loveland Living in the future
Planet Aquarium received in Salt Lake City. I hope you
sometimes with my family to revisit this place and mine
Son at the sight of saying, "Do not be careful with little men with big
Sometimes, there is nothing less than "The greatest show on earth"!

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