Last week I saw U2 at Don Valley Stadium in Sheffield, on their northern leg of the 360 Tour. Myself & a few local photographers moonlight at rock togs in association with The Sound Gallery, and Phil tried his luck getting press-passes for the U2 show. As it turned out, on the morning of the gig, we got confirmation that we had two press passes! But as myself, Clare & her pal Alix already had tickets, and the logistics of doing both looked a pain.
Below is the crazy crab spaceship type stage used on the U2 360 tour. A chap called Willie Russell has designed all the U2 stages since the 80s, and not only was he a Sheffield boy, but it was his birthday. So later on, Bono got us all to sing him a happy birthday.
The stage was quite special, with a War of The Worlds vibe.
I decided to film a bit on my compact camera, cos it was proving quite hard to show the show in a fixed wide-angle lens. The quality of the G10’s video isn’t much, at VGA 640×480 pixels and quite high in digital noise, but it shows things off quite well and the sound isn’t bad at all!
I chopped this little taster together in iMovie… Enjoy!
I was wishing I had my 5DmkII, and could’ve got some tasty HD footage and some sweet shots with the 15mm.
Check out a few of Phil & Rob’s shots from the pit. I’m only a bit jealous!
…back to my gritty G10 snaps – I liked this one, showing Bono & The Edge on the 360 screen and the band on stage below.
I liked this one of Adam Clayton working his bass in the spot.
From a technical point of view: You can see the noise starting to dominate the photos at ISO 800. The G10 is great for being able to shoot manually, but the lens is quite slow (aperture-wise at the longer end of the zoom) and noise performance is pretty lame, especially compared to the mkII. Perhaps there’s a £1500 difference in price for a reason!
Another stage shot showing Bono on the stage & screen. There were moveable bridges spanning the gap between to the outer stage catwalk.
I had a little play with long exposure light trails while I was there too. Kinda like them.
I’ve seen U2 a bunch of times now and they’re never dull live. Fan or not, it’s hard not to be impressed by their shows.
The 360 video screen dropped down to engulf the stage.
Go on boys.
It must be mental playing to this many people.
I like the colour difference between the crowd & band.
The video screen, back up.
The way they filmed it was cunning too, with fisheye cameras running round the stage edge, controlled from below & a camera under each leg.
The pile out after the show.
Apparently, they have 3 or 4 stages set up at this and the next shows, but take down all the sound & lighting gear after show & drive it to the next show.
Make sure you grab a chance to check U2 next time they’re in town!