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  • Northside East


Monday, 23rd November, 2015 8:00am

Story by Neil Fetherstonhaugh

U2 in action the last time they were in Dublin. PHOTO: Darren Kinsella


U2 in action the last time they were in Dublin. PHOTO: Darren Kinsella

THE Northside is rolling out its own special welcome as the U2 juggernaut comes to town this week for four explosive nights at Dublin’s 3Arena.

The Church Bar in Dublin, one of city’s busiest watering holes and tourist attractions, will open a U2 themed bar from Monday, November 23, the day the band return home for the first of their sold out shows.

The Joshua Tree, Ireland’s best U2 tribute act, will play live on Thursday, November 26 at 11pm and at 12am on Friday 27 and Saturday 28 after the U2 shows.

“This is a show not to be missed,” the bar stated. “The Joshua Tree will be playing all of U2’s greatest hits with some very special guests over the week.

“Each day in our U2 themed bar DJ Eamonn Barrett will warm up the fans who are travelling from all around the world to see the Northside band. Eamonn, who formed the band Royseven, will take to the decks from 4-6pm before fans head off to see the U2 show.”

There will also be U2 photographs on display that fans can win just by dropping by while walking U2 tours will also leave and finish at the bar.

With a musical history that dates back to April 1742, when George Frederic Handel practised his Messiah before its first public performance on Fishamble Street, the Church is determined to give visiting fans a warm welcome.

They have also created the hashtags #WelcomeToTheNorthside and #TheChurchDublin to keep fans up to date.

The biggest band in the world are set to make a triumphant homecoming with their  iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE tour that has mesmerised audiences since it kicked off in Canada in May.

The exciting new stage show has received ecstatic reviews from those who have watched them as they travelled across North America and into Europe.

Last week they played two major shows in Belfast, their first in a decade, but the four Dublin dates will prove to be a highlight as they return to the town they call home.

Tickets for all four Dublin shows and the Belfast dates sold out almost as soon as they went on sale with fans from across the world joining the Irish crowd to see the boys perform in their home town.

The tour centres on songs from the 2014 album ‘Songs of Innocence’, a deeply personal record of the band’s upbringing in Dublin, that contain numerous references to Bono’s life on the Northside before fame knocked on the door of Number 10 Cedarwood Road.

Writing about the opening shows in Vancouver, rock bible Rolling Stone headlined their piece: ‘U2 Reinvent the Arena Show at Triumphant ‘Innocence’ Tour Opener’.

‘It’s worth noting that the group’s innovative new sound system, which utilizes a series of speakers hung from the ceiling spread evenly throughout the venue, sounded absolutely amazing,’ the magazine enthused. ‘Just about every other live act in history simply stacked their sound equipment near the stage and blasted it out across the entire house, almost deafening a chunk of the crowd in the process. This new approach results in far a cleaner, crisper, significantly less abrasive acoustics. It deserves to become the new standard’.

Reviewing last week’s Belfast shows RTE wrote: ‘Under a bare light bulb suspended from high up in the SSE’s rafters, ‘The Miracle of Joey Ramone’ sounds big and raw in the live arena and followed by the exhilarating drama of ‘Electric Co’, it was the sound of a band immediately playing like their reputation depended on it. Followed by late-career wonder ‘Vertigo’, it was the start of a near two-and-a half-hour set that cherry picked from nearly the complete range of U2’s 35-year back catalogue’.

However, despite effusive praise, the band still finds playing Dublin a challenge.

In an interview with Hot Press earlier this month, The Edge said that changes to accommodate the unique stage show in the 3Arena meant that there was an element of “jeopardy” about the gigs.

“Were putting on a production designed for a much bigger house than the 3Arena,” he explained. “You know it’s going to lift the roof off with the energy and concentration.”

He added: “The Glasgow audience are great; they and the Dublin audience I think are the two that are the most energetic of all our audiences in this part of the world. I can’t think of an audience that is more fun to play for.”

Rock on boys

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