Elevation 2001, Show Eight and Nine, Calgary, April 9/10th, 2001
The fans are really starting to get into this tour - in Calgary the first sighting of a Mexican Wave before the band arrive - while the penchant for signs is beginning to take off. First night notables? THE GOAL IS SOUL; PLEASE PLAY PRIDE TONIGHT OR TOMORROW; CALGARY LOVES U2.
And someone is reading these signs too: second night at Calgary and, for the first time on the tour so far, U2 play Pride (In The Name of Love).
The cheer for those opening chords is matched only by the cheer on the first night ignited during Sunday Bloody Sunday when one fan holds up a sign reading, 'FUCK THE REVOLUTION!' (That rings a bell.)
If U2 are tired after commuting from Los Angeles and a long weekends shoot on the Elevation 'Tombraider' video, they don't show it. There is a special reason to put on good shows here in Calgary : if the celebrities are thin on the ground, someone more important is in town - the family.
'We've got to rock 'cos we've got the whole family here today..' says Bono at the first show. 'Edge's and my girls are out there somewhere', at which point he introduces his other family, including, a new nomenclature this, 'Lord Adam'. Didn't JRR Tolkien write about him ?
Texas may have been last week but there are stetsons everywhere in Calgary, including one Bono wears during a blistering version of New York - is this the surprise hit of the tour so far ? - where he tries it on and off for size in front of the video screens.
And, in between the Pete-Townshend style cartwheeling arms duel with Edge - wearing the No 5 shirt - the singer spits his swig of water in a silvery arch across the stage. I Will Follow becomes The Sweetest Thing and In A Little While and Desire. The 21 songs in the set list for the first night again carry a twist or two, notably with Ground Beneath Her Feet missing and Desire returning.
For Where the Streets Have No Name, Bono is spinning around on the catwalk, reaching into the audience, touching hands, crossing himself before embarking on his nightly sprint around the heart. There is no stetson for Mysterious Ways, which again snatches Marvin Gaye's Sexual Healing and, another slow-burner this, the brilliant video clip featuring Charlton Heston
- before the encore - receives a powerful reception. Hestonπs pro-gun apologetics prove unconvincing in Calgary - he gets a big thumbs down.
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, says Bono as the first show comes towards a close. 'Cool Town, thanks for spending your hard earned cash on a rock show, thanks for hanging around all these years...'