U2's Auckland #2 setlist, 09/11/19
Tonight, U2 are performing their second of two shows in Auckland. If you missed out on the first night's action, read about it here.
This visit to New Zealand only features these two shows in Auckland. This is the same as U2's two most recent visits, in 2006 and 2010. U2 last performed in the South Island on 1 December 1993 in Christchurch, and the last time they played a show in a North Island city other than Auckland was in Wellington on 8 November 1989. U2 have never performed in New Zealand's most celebrated city of music, Dunedin.
The setlist featured one change from the opening night of the tour. Every Breaking Wave made way for You're the Best Thing About Me, which was last performed on 13 November 2018, the final date of last year's tour. Like last year, it was performed in a stripped-down style. This means that tonight's set did not include anything from Songs of Innocence, save an extremely brief snippet of California in Streets.
There were reports that U2 rehearsed The Little Things That Give You Away during the souncheck today, but these are incorrect. The rehearsal was of You're the Best Thing About Me. But, we had cool stat about Little Things, so we will keep it here: Little Things, last performed on 25 July 2017, holds the extremely rare distinction of being an officially-released U2 song only ever performed live before its release. There are a few other examples of this: most notably, Shadows and Tall Trees appeared frequently in U2's early setlists, but all of those performances occurred before the Boy album came out in October 1980.
During Bad, Bono sang an extended snippet of Fall At Your Feet, a song written by New Zealand musician Neil Finn for his band Crowded House (which formed in Melbourne). Earlier this week, at one rehearsal Bono tried out a snippet of a different Crowded House song, Don't Dream It's Over, but he hasn't sung a line from that song either tonight or last night.
Between In God's Country and Trip Through Your Wires, Bono went on a little story about how this morning he remembered that Edge and Larry as teenagers played in a country band in Ireland called the Drifting Cowboys. He asked them what they learned from that experience. Edge said he learned that "there is no money in rock and roll" and wondered what sort of a life he might have had if he had pursued that other band instead. Larry said he learned the foxtrot, and played a foxtrot rhythm for the crowd.
Like yesterday, Bono spoke at length about Greg Carroll before One Tree Hill, talking about how Greg joined the U2 crew and became a close friend before his tragic death. Greg's family were in attendance tonight.
New Zealand's prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, was in attendance tonight. She appeared in the sequence of "luminous icons" displayed during Ultra Violet, as did the first woman to be elected prime minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark. (Historical note, if you are interested: Clark led Labour to victory in 1999; at that election, the leaders of both of the two largest parties were women. Jenny Shipley, the leader of National, was the first woman prime minister. She became PM mid-term, taking over from Jim Bolger.)
Like last night, One was dedicated to the victims of the Christchurch terrorist attack in March. Bono commended New Zealand's response: "it is hard to respond to such hate with such grace, but you did it".
The full setlist was:
- Sunday Bloody Sunday
- New Year's Day
- Bad / Fall At Your Feet (snippet)
- Pride (In the Name of Love)
- Where the Streets Have No Name / California (There Is No End To Love) (snippet)
- I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
- With or Without You
- Bullet the Blue Sky / The Star-Spangled Banner (snippet) / America (snippet)
- Running To Stand Still
- Red Hill Mining Town
- In God's Country
- Trip Through Your Wires
- One Tree Hill
- Exit / Wise Blood (snippet) / Eeny Meeny Miny Moe (snippet)
- Mothers Of The Disappeared
- Angel of Harlem
- Vertigo / Rebel Rebel (snippet)
- Even Better Than The Real Thing
- You're The Best Thing About Me
- Beautiful Day
- Ultraviolet (Light My Way)
- Love Is Bigger Than Anything in Its Way
- One / Invisible (snippet)
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