"The Spaghetti Incident?"

Set lists and a little bit of Rock

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Is Michael Jackon really history?

bono playing guitar
What rhymes with achtung?

The one thing that truly stands out for me when thinking about the brilliance of U2 is not their songs, the drums, or riffs. Nor is it the hype and hyperbole of one of the world's most popular bands but their lyrics.

Bono has written the vast majority of U2's lyrics and in many of them you can find some true gems of penmanship, little sparkles of lyrical bliss that took a good song and put it into the territory of musical greatness.

I suggest that while some non U2 fans take any chance to diss Bono, they would be really grumpy buggers if they denied that Bono was a great lyricist.

Like a good poet, Bono's lyrics feature a whole range of subjects - love and loss, drugs, faith, faith in drugs, gods, Elvis and other monsters and of course, politics and it's prisoners. This work leaves ample room for an inquiry into U2's lyrics, especially when The Edge chips in the odd song.

So what are Bono's best lyrical moments and qualities? 

What's his inspiration for putting pen to paper.  What makes Bono's lyrics so well received by millions of listeners and readers around the world? I can't speak for anyone else but I thought I could share 10 U2 songs which I think highlight Bono's mastery of his craft.

Some of thing are simply clever word plays, others are stories of delight and irony - a thing which Bono and the boys were very heavy on in the 1990's. Trabants on stage anyone?

10 songs that show Bono's lyrical qualities

Perhaps second only to With Or Without you in terms of popularity, it is arguably U2's finest song and I believe the lyrics are what make this so - I think this is because it's one of those songs where the lyrics can mean anything and everything to anyone.

At work last week a manager did a pop quiz and asked what this song was about. The answers varied from 'it's about a gay couple' or 'two torn lovers'. I think Bono's actually on record in the U2 by U2 book as One being a song about a couple that's breaking up. But that doesn't matter as its words are universal and have been taken to heart by so many U2 fans - indeed some have even had it as their wedding song which I'm sure would be a delicious irony for Bono

The Wanderer

"They say they want the kingdom but they don't want God in it". I think that's Bono perfectly capturing the wishes of so many of us. We want the nice things, but aren't prepared to put in the effort.

Or something.

For me, The Wanderer always seemed like some post apocalyptic dream - and it's perhaps a sign of a great song where it allows you to shape your own thoughts and fantasies around it (well when Bono mentions the 'atomic sky', that's nice nudge). Indeed, the whole of Zooropa's lyrics seem to take me to a strange other world, where in some places it's OK to feel numb or taste the lemon but spit out antifreeze.

Original of the Species

The title is suggestive of what's to come in this song, a play on Darwin's epic work about evolution - the song's lyrics are possibly a father looking at his daughter's own evolution from - child to woman.

The second half is more likely Bono singing to his wife (and the message in the first half could also before her) - either way both, themes are heartwarming.

If God Will Send His Angels

'Blind leading the blond' is perhaps my favourite U2 line ever. It's just a cleverly simply play on words. Bono does that trick a fair bit in the Pop album - an almost too cute example is from The Playboy Mansion which opens with the lyric "If Coke is a mystery, and Micheal Jackson, history..." which was a nice play on the failing career of Jackson and a play on the name of his Greatest Hits album.

Sunday Bloody Sunday

Bono defiantly wears this song's lyrics on his sleeve. A song about soldiers shooting civilians in Northern Ireland - the lyrics capture the moment crisply by invoking a cross fire between religion and the military (and by extension the State) and the sad consequences when both collide.

Featuring a fine use of  a marching drum beat by Larry Mullen, the song's chorus is a defining moment for Bono - it was one of U2's first truly popular 'classic' songs and it many ways this song defined U2 as a band that could carry some political weight.

Until the End of the World

"In my dream I was drowning my sorrows
But my sorrows, they learned to swim
Surrounding me, going down on me
Spilling over the brim

Waves of regret and waves of joy
I reached out for the one I tried to destroy
You, you said you'd wait
'Til the end of the world"

Simply one of Bono's finest song writing moments. Water is commonly used as a metaphor life yet here's Bono drowning in his sorrows. The song can be seen as a obvious story about how Judas betrayed Jesus and thus seen as one of those "U2 going on about God and spiritually" type songs but as with all good lyrics they can mean anything. I tend to see this one more of a dramatic break up between two lovers where the relationship perhaps has been bit one sided.

The Wanderer

"They say they want the kingdom but they don't want God in it". I think that's Bono perfectly capturing the wishes of so many of us. We want the nice things, but aren't prepared to put in the effort. For me, The Wanderer always seemed like some post apocalyptic dream - and it's perhaps a sign of a great song where it allows you to shape your own thoughts and fantasies around it (well when Bono mentions the 'atomic sky', that's nice nudge).

Indeed, the whole of Zooropa's lyrics seem to take me to a  strange other world, where in some places it's OK to feel numb or taste the lemon but spit out antifreeze.

Not a hugely popular song on release as a single but I think time has shown that Please was a fine song from U2's Pop album. Lyrically it was a political plea, invoking the captains of Irish politics to sort their messes out. The listener would perhaps know the song had political connotations if they had seen the cover which featured Gerry Adams and other elected leaders - however this stanza effectively leaves no stone unturned as Bono thows a rock in the air to hit home the issues:

Your Catholic blues, your convent shoes
Your stick-on tattoos, now they're making the news
Your holy war, your northern star
Your sermon on the mount from the boot of your car

Strong stuff from an album many people were quick to write off.

One could be forgiven for thinking that Get on Your Boots was simply a throw away song by U2 ( indeed one wonders why they released it as the first single from No Line on the Horizon when Magnificent probably would have given them a hit single) however the lyrics of this song run deep.

Almost a stream of consciousness, tripping through it's seemingly nonsensical words but when Bono writes "I don’t want to talk about the wars between the nations" he's saying everything.

All I Want is You

This is Bono's finest love letter he has ever written. The closing from Rattle and Hum is simply a man tell a woman how he loves her - it's perhaps not the happiest song with undertones suggesting things may have gone awry - indeed the tremendous coda at the end suggests a passionate love affair being ripped apart by uncaring forces.

A good lyric deserves a fine musical backing and All I Want is You has it in spades.


So that was my attempt to highlight some of the fine lyrical qualities and charms that Bono and U2 have to offer. Of course with any interpretation of songs, the whole exercise is a subjective journey, indeed a musical journey that could have stopped at a completely different set of songs.

Bono is a bit of a lyrical magpie. He steals lines from the bible and riffs on the work of others (such as when he tried to write a sequel of sorts to John Lennon's 'God') to make his point. But he does that and gets his unique messages across to the listener very well.

If someone hasn't already printed a book featuring all of U2's lyrics, they surely will as they serve as some fine literature in their own right. Throw in some political rallying and a little love making and there's a best seller book of poetry on your hands....

What are your favourite lyrical moments from U2?

Speaking of Star Wars and Last Jedi Trivia, we can't help but wondering if Michael Jackson was a Star Wars fan and if so, what would he thought of these facts about Rogue One? We kinda think he might have liked it.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Clapton and Winwood Japan Set List

Eric Clapton and Steve Winwood Setlist 

When: November 21, 2011

Two of the greatest guitar slingers around teamed up for a shared night of fret play in Osaka, Japan.

Keen fans might recall Winwood and Clapton played in Blind Faith together in the late 60's and toured together again in 2010.

Their show features a multitude of famous covers, being top heavy in JJ Cale - not that I think anyone in the audience was complaining! Plenty of Blind Faith also featured and songs from other bands Winwood has played in.

Clapton & Winwood Set List:

Had to Cry Today (Blind Faith)
Low Down (J.J. Cale)
After Midnight (J.J. Cale)
Presence of the Lord (Blind Faith)
Glad (Traffic)
Well All Right (Blind Faith)
Hoochie Coochie Man (Muddy Waters)
While You See A Chance
Key To The Highway
Midland Maniac
Crossroads (Robert Johnson)
Georgia On My Mind (Hoagy Carmichael and His Orchestra cover)
That's No Way to Get Along (Robert Wilkins)
Wonderful Tonight
Can't Find My Way Home  (Blind Faith )
Gimme Some Lovin' (The Spencer Davis Group)
Voodoo Chile (The Jimi Hendrix Experience)
Cocaine (J.J. Cale)

Set List Encore:

Dear Mr. Fantasy (Traffic cover)

Monday, 21 November 2011

U2 lyrics featuring atomic bombs

U2 songs that reference nuclear bombs and other horrors

U2 are known for their political views and agitation to get policy change but where as a band like Rage Against the Machine would be all in your face – U2 are just as obvious but less angry – their last tour featured members of Amnesty International coming out on state during Walk On – a song dedicated to Aung San Suu Kyi,  a Burman political prisoner and Nobel Peace Prize winner. Both band’s lyrics also push the barrel of whatever agenda they have – a long standing on for U2 has been referencing atomic war and nuclear issues.

U2 also once famously protested against the Sellafeild nuclear plant by colluding with Greenpeace to stage an event on a beach near the site that was contaminated with radiation as the result of the power plant’s activities.

As far as I can figure the earliest U2 song lyrics that refers to atomic bombs is from the non album single, Celebration where Bono sarcastically shares that he believes in the following three things:

“I believe in the third world war
I believe in the atomic bomb
I believe in the powers that be but they won't overpower me”

That was as far back as 1982.

Seconds from the popular War album is another early U2 songs to make direct references to atomic bombs

“And they're doing the atomic bomb
Do they know where the dance comes from
Yes, they're doing the atomic bomb
They want you to sing along

Bono said to the NME music magazine in 1983 of the song "There is a line in 'Seconds' about a fanatic assembling a nuclear device in an apartment in Times Square, New York, but it could be anywhere. We are now entering the age of nuclear terrorism where a group of fanatics could have the capabilities of bringing a bomb into a city and holding millions of people to ransom."

The Unforgettable Fire was released in 1984 in a time when the world was worrying itself sick about the arms race between the US and the Russians. Bono was inspired by a collection of paintings collectively known as The Unforgettable Fire which was a reference to atomic bombs being dropped in the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Ngagasaki. 

Says the Edge of the art display (in the book U2: Into the Heart: The Stories Behind Every Song) "the image of that purging quality, coupled with the insight it gave into the horror of nuclear holocaust, stuck in Bono's mind".

It is perhaps ironic then the lyrics to song The Unforgettable Fire do not reference anything nuclear or atomic!

The Wanderer, featuring country and western legend Johnny Cash from the Zooropa album was definitely suggestive of being set in a post apocalyptic world set under an 'atomic sky'. Lyrically it featured a character that appeared to be struggling to find some kind of spiritual identity.

Another U2 album title also referred to atomic bombs in a most direct fashion – How to Dismantle An Atomic Bomb was a popular album that had a bonus track Fast Cars which gave the answer to the album’s question – one dismantles an atomic bomb with love.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Foo Fighters Georgia Setlist Duluth

Foo Fighters Georgia Setlist Duluth plus Review

While these was no Georgia on my Mind played, Georgia was on the minds of the Foo Fighters as they cranked out at epic set list at The Arena at Gwinnett Center, Duluth.

Playing to a pretty damn decent crowd of fans, the Foos played a fair mix of new material and classic tracks and even chucked in a Pink Floyd number and some Tom Petty. The set's encore even featured Dave Grohl performing a few numbers acoustically. 

Foos played their set on November 7, 2011

Set List 

Bridge Burning
The Pretender
My Hero
Learn to Fly
White Limo
Cold Day in the Sun
Stacked Actors
Monkey Wrench
Let It Die
These Days
This is a Call
In the Flesh? (Pink Floyd cover)
All My Life

Set List Encore:

Wheels (Dave Grohl acoustic)
Best of You (Dave Grohl acoustic)
Times Like These (Dave Grohl solo acoustic leading into full Foos band)
Dear Rosemary
Breakdown (Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers cover)

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Noel Gallagher's set list Canada

Check out Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds setlist from the the gig at the Massey Hall in Toronto, Canada.

Noel's Setlist

(It’s Good) To Be Free
Mucky Fingers
Everybody’s On The Run
Dream On
If I Had A Gun
The Good Rebel
The Death Of You And Me
Freaky Teeth
(I Wanna Live In A Dream In My) Record Machine
AKA... What A Life!
Talk Tonight
Soldier Boys And Jesus Freaks
AKA... Broken Arrow
Half The World Away
(Stranded On) The Wrong Beach
Little By Little
The Importance Of Being Idle
Don’t Look Back In Anger

Noel has announced today he'll play at the Big Day Out in 2012

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

The Throne Set List Watch The Throne Tour

The Throne Concert set list

28 October 2011

Kanye West and Jay –Z hooked up for a sweet set as The Throne.

Venue: Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA, USA
Watch The Throne Tour

The Throne Set List

Who Gon Stop Me
Try a Little Tenderness
Gotta Have It
Where I'm From
Nigga What? Nigga Who?
Can't Tell Me Nothing
Jesus Walks
Diamonds From Sierra Leone
U Don't Know
Run This Town
Power/Power Remix
Murder To Excellence
New Day
Hard Knock Life
Good Life
On To The Next One
Dirt Off Your Shoulders
Touch The Sky
All of the Lights
Big Pimpin'
Gold Digger
99 Problems
No Church in the Wild
Lift Off
Niggas In Paris

The Throne Set List Encore

Made in America
Why I Love You

Aerosmith Setlist São Paulo, Brazil

Aerosmith Setlist São Paulo, Brazil

Aerosmith have sobered up and stoped fighting with each other long enough to get their shit together to go on the Back on the Road tour.

When: October 30th 2011
Venue: Arena Anhembi, São Paulo, Brazil

Aerosmith Set List

Ride of the Valkyries introduction

Draw the Line
Same Old Song and Dance
Mama Kin
Janie's Got A Gun
Livin' on the Edge
Drum Solo
Rag Doll
What It Takes
Last Child
I Don't Want To Miss a Thing
Sweet Emotion

First Aerosmith Encore:

Dream On
Love in an Elevator
Walk This Way

Set Encore 2:

Train Kept A-Rollin'

Friday, 4 November 2011

30 Seconds to Mars Set List Latvia

30 Seconds to Mars Set List Latvia

Venue: Riga Arena, Riga, Latvia

Closer to the Edge Tour 2011

November 2, 2011

Set List

Night of the Hunter
This Is War
A Beautiful Lie
Search and Destroy
Vox Populi

Acoustic Session

The Kill

Set List Encore:

The Story
Closer to the Edge
Kings and Queens

Alter Bridge Setlist Switzerland 2011

Alter Bridge Setlist Switzerland 2011

Miles must have taken time off from touring with Slash to hook up with his Alter Bridge buddies to place a gig at Fri-Son, Fribourg, Switzerland on November 1, 2011

Set List

Slip to the Void
Find the Real
Before Tomorrow Comes
Come to Life
Brand New Start
White Knuckles
All Hope Is Gone
Broken Wings
I Know It Hurts
One Day Remains
Ties That Bind
Watch Over You (Acoustic)
Open Your Eyes

Alter Bridge Set List Encore:

Ghost of Days Gone By
Dueling Guitar Solos – Mark and Myles
Rise Today

Pearl Jam Brazil Set List 2011

Pearl Jam Brazil Set List 2011

Where: Morumbi Stadium
Country: São Paulo, Brazil
When: Nov 03, 2011

PJ's set list was a very different show from their PJ20 show from Canada in September.

PJ Brazil Set List

01. Release
02. Corduroy
03. Why Go
04. Animal
05. World Wide Suicide
06. Got Some
07. Evenflow
08. Unthought Known
09. Whipping
10. Daughter/WMA
11. Olé
12. Down
13. Save You
14. The Fixer
15. Do The Evolution
16. Porch

Set Encore One

17. Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town
18. Just Breathe
19. Come Back
20. I Believe In Miracles (Ramones cover)
21. Alive

Encore Break Two Set List

22. Comatose
23. Black
24. Betterman

25. Rearviewmirror
26. Rockin’ In The Free World

Bob Dylan Set List Sweden

Bob Dylan Set List Sweden

The world’s most poplar folk singer turned Christian turned rocker playerd a fairly standard set list at the Malmö Arena in Malmö, Sweden on November 3, 2011

Sweden Set List

Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat
Girl From The North Country
Things Have Changed
Tangled Up In Blue
Honest With Me
A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall
High Water (For Charley Patton)
Blind Willie McTell
Highway 61 Revisited
Love Sick
Thunder On The Mountain
Ballad Of A Thin Man
All Along The Watchtower
Like A Rolling Stone
Blowin' In The Wind

Beady Eye Chile Set list 2011

Beady Eye Chile Set list

Beady Eye played their show at the Industria Cultural, Santiago, Chile

When: October 31, 2011

Set List by Beady Eye

Beatles and Stones
Two of a Kind
For Anyone
Three Ring Circus
The Roller
In the Bubble With a Bullet
Bring the Light
Standing on the Edge of the Noise
Kill for a Dream
The Beat Goes On
Man of Misery
The Morning Son

Beady Eye Set List Encore:

World Outside My Room
Sons of the Stage  (World of Twist cover)

BBC Set List Noel Gallagher and his Birds

noel gallagher as parker from thunderbirds

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds set list from the BBC Radio Theatre in London, that was
 broadcast by the BBC across it's network.

Again, it was a set list pretty standard for the tour thus far - see the High Flying Bird's London Set list as an example.

Noel's BBC Setlist

(It's Good) To Be Free
Mucky Fingers
Everybody's On The Run
Dream On
If I Had A Gun
The Good Rebel
The Death Of You And Me
Freaky Teeth
Wonderwall (acoustic)
Supersonic (acoustic)
(I Wanna Live In A Dream In My) Record Machine
AKA... What A Life!
Talk Tonight
Don't Look Back In Anger
AKA... Broken Arrow
Half The World Away
(Stranded On) The Wrong Beach.

Did you hear Noel Gallagher has a new album out? Do the Damage is a b-side to the lead single, In the Heat of the Moment.

The Acacia Strain Set List God Dam Tour

The Acacia Strain Set List

God Dam Tour

November 2011

Set List

Dr Doom
Whoa! Shut It Down
See You Next Tuesday
The Hills Have Eyes
Balboa Towers
The Impaler
Passing The Pencil Test

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Ash Set List Free All Angels Tour 2011

Ash Set List Free All Angels Tour 2011

Irish lads (with a lost but found lass)  Ash played the famous Academy in Dublin last week as part of their Free All Angels Tour, where they played their 2001 album in its entirety. This kind of thing is very popular thing to do these days, as it's a sweet way to con the fans out of some more money - The Pixies have been touring Dolittle for a while....

Ash Setlist:

Walking Barefoot
Shining Light
Burn Baby Burn
Cherry Bomb
Pacific Palisades
There’s a Star
World Domination

Encore 1

A Life Less Ordinary
Warmer Than Fire
Oh Yeah

Set Encore Two

Lose Control
Kung Fu
Girl From Mars

Alice Cooper Set List London 2011 Tour

Alice Cooper Set List London, England 

When: October 29th, 2011
Where: Alexandra Palace

Does this guy ever give up? He's like the Eveready Battery or something.  Isn't he older than the Rolling Stones combined? Alice Cooper is like the mail man because he always delivers - and here's a hit laden set list. I look back on the time I saw Alice in Wellington very very fondly!

Alice Cooper's London Set List

The Black Widow
Brutal Planet
I'm Eighteen
Under My Wheels
Billion Dollar Babies
No More Mr. Nice Guy
Hey Stoopid
Is It My Body
Halo of Flies
I'll Bite Your Face Off
Muscle of Love
Orianthe solo
Only Women Bleed
Cold Ethyl
Feed My Frankenstein
Clones (We're All)
Wicked Young Man
Killer / I Love The Dead
School's Out
Set list Encore

Fire (with Arthur Brown)

Machine Head Set List The Eighth Plague Tour 2011

The opening night of  Machine Head's The Eighth Plague Tour brought about the following set list.  Bring Me The Horizon, DevilDriver and Darkest Hour chimed in with sweet bills of their own too.

The bands all played at the Sentrum Scene which is in Oslo, Norway

November 1 2011

Machine Head Set List

1. I Am Hell (Sonata in C#)
2. Be Still And Know *
3. Imperium
4. Beautiful Mourning
5. The Blood, the Sweat, the Tears
6. Locust
7. This Is The End *
8. Aesthetics of Hate
9. Old
10. Darkness Within
11. Bulldozer
12. Ten Ton Hammer
13. Halo
14. Davidian

* apparently this was the 1st time the song has ever been played live.

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds Setlist London

Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds Setlist London

Noel and his Birds played at the HMV Hammersmith Apollo, London, England on October 29, 2011.

Noel seems to be sticking to the same set list as his Irish and Scottish gigs. This was a pretty standard approach that Oasis took - as did Meatloaf when he toured NZ recently!

Set List:

(It's Good) To Be Free
Mucky Fingers
Everybody's on the Run
Dream On
If I Had a Gun...
The Good Rebel
The Death of You and Me
Freaky Teeth
 (I Wanna Live in a Dream in My) Record Machine
AKA... What a Life!
Talk Tonight
Soldier Boys and Jesus Freaks
AKA... Broken Arrow
Half The World Away
(Stranded On) The Wrong Beach

Set Encore:

Don't Look Back In Anger
The Importance of Being Idle
Little By Little

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Halloween Set List Greenday NY

Green Day Halloween Set List NY

Green Day played their Halloween Set at the The Studio at Webster Hall in New York, NY.

October 27, 2011

Green Day's Halloween Set List 

Monster Mash Intro
Hybrid Moments
(The Misfits cover) (Played 3 Times in a row!)
Sweet 16
Stop, Drop, and Roll
(Foxboro Hot Tubs cover)
(Foxboro Hot Tubs cover)
Hitchin' a Ride
Geek Stink Breath
Welcome To Paradise
2000 Light Years Away
Paper Lanterns
Going To Pasalacqua
Monster Mash Outro

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