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U2's New York City #1 setlist, 18/07

Tonight, U2 played their first of eight shows at Madison Square Garden in New York, New York. This will be their final stop on the American continent until future dates are announced.

Rumours were rampant before the show began, ranging from the band being joined on stage by Bruce Springsteen, to US President Barack Obama being in attendance. Also rumoured was the inclusion of October being on the setlist. One of the three rumours, at least, proved to be true, as October made its first appearance in a U2 setlist in 25 years, 8 months, and 7 days (or 9,380 days). It was last played on 11 November 1989 on the Lovetown Tour. The only original U2 song to go longer between performances is Scarlet, at 10,675 days. Since Gloria has also been played recently, this means that the current tour is the first tour to feature more than one October song since Lovetown.

It is very rare for October to be performed without seguing into New Year's Day. On the first leg of the War Tour, and on the second leg through to 5 May 1983, October segued into Tomorrow, with New Year's Day normally played earlier in the main set. At a small handful of Joshua Tree Tour shows - including the six between 4 April and 12 April 1987 (the second to seventh shows of tour) as well as 3 November 1987 - October led into With Or Without You. The last time a show featuring October did not have New Year's Day anywhere in the setlist was before the latter was even written: 14 May 1982.

The Electric Co. made its return to the first rotating spot today after missing one show, and was later joined by Elevation and Ordinary Love (the latter in honour of the late Nelson Mandela's birthday). Ordinary Love was back after a three-show absence, and Elevation after one.

The band frequently made reference to their punk roots; their connection to the city; and the myriad celebrities, political figures, activists and (RED) Campaign contributors in the show's attendance throughout the evening. Some named: Harry Belafonte, Salman Rushdie, Mario Batali, Spike Jonze, and many, many others.  No mention of President Obama, however, and Springsteen was on stage this evening... in Asbury Park, New Jersey. 

The full setlist was:

  1. The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)
  2. The Electric Co. / Send in the Clowns (snippet) / I Can See For Miles (snippet) / On Broadway (snippet)
  3. Vertigo / God Save The Queen (Sex Pistols) (snippet)
  4. I Will Follow
  5. Iris (Hold Me Close)
  6. Cedarwood Road
  7. Song For Someone
  8. Sunday Bloody Sunday / When Johnny Comes Marching Home (snippet)
  9. Raised By Wolves / Psalm 23 (snippet)
  10. Until the End of the World / Love and Peace or Else (snippet)
  11. (Intermission - The Fly)
  12. Invisible
  13. Even Better Than The Real Thing Fish Out of Water Mix
  14. Mysterious Ways / Burning Down The House (snippet) / Young Americans (snippet)
  15. Elevation
  16. Ordinary Love
  17. October
  18. Every Breaking Wave
  19. With or Without You / In The Garden (snippet) / Shine Like Stars (snippet)
  20. City of Blinding Lights
  21. Bullet the Blue Sky / 19 (snippet)
  22. The Hands That Built America (snippet) / Pride (In the Name of Love)

  23. encore(s):
  24. Beautiful Day / I Remember You (snippet)
  25. Mother And Child Reunion (snippet) / Where the Streets Have No Name / California (There Is No End To Love) (snippet)
  26. One / Invisible (snippet)
All details for this show including reviews, videos and photos can be found here.

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Posted on by Ashley

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