11 August 2001
Show Day: Manchester - Evening News Arena, Show One
Took the train from London Euston to Manchester this morning. As we headed north, the weather turned grey, then black and finally the heavens opened. By the time we rolled into Manchester it was just bleak - looking out of the train window across the valley it looked more like Brigadoon than Lancashire.
Got a cab to the venue to find a regular work day in progress. This is really good venue for this production as its one of the few "360" gigs in Britain (i.e. seats all the way round the back of the stage). Anticipation was high as the band arrived for soundcheck and ripped into "Discotheque". Afterwards they were full of tales from the Ibiza rave up and the days that followed. It appears that The Edge's birthday celebrations are still in full swing, which is good to hear. Any excuse.
I had about a hundred guests to juggle, but we had a great night. It was such a "rock" crowd. Its always interesting to see which songs get the biggest reactions from country to country and tonight there was an unmistakable leaning toward the up tempo end of the scale.
For ease and convenience I am staying at the crew hotel, which is walking distance from the gig. After the show the hotel bar was packed, presumably on grounds that it showed no sign of closing whilst there was still anybody awake in there. It was supposed to be residents only, but I did manage to get my guests in under the barbed wire, so once again it wasn't an early night.