The Joshua Tree Tour 2019

Nov 8 2019
Auckland, NZ / Mt. Smart Stadium
with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds

'Run like a river to the sea...'
Remembering Greg Carroll and the people of Christchurch. Opening night  #TheJoshuaTreeTour2019

'The moon is up and over One Tree Hill
We see the sun go down in your eyes.
You run like a river on to the sea
You run like a river runs to the sea…''

"You're about to see one of the greatest things you'll ever see" said Noel Gallagher at the end of a fine opening set with his High Flying Birds. No pressure then, as the band took to the stage, taking The Joshua Tree back on the road with the first of two shows in  Auckland, New Zealand  tonight.

They paid special tribute to former crew member Greg Carroll, for whom 'One Tree Hill' is named and to whom The Joshua Tree album was dedicated.

'On our first trip to New Zealand a young man from the local crew told us there was something missing from our band. When we asked him what that was, he said me. And that's where we began our relationship with Greg Carroll. We sort of adopted him or perhaps it was the other way around…'

Later in the show, Bono paid tribute to those who lost their lives last March in the terrorist shootings in Christchurch mosques. Some of the survivors of the attacks were in attendance as the huge screen lit up with the names of those who were killed and the band played 'One'. 

'There's only one song we can play and you know what it is.'


Stewart Sowman-Lund for the New Zealand Herald - read in full here.

'U2 frontman Bono has paid a touching tribute to his former roadie Greg Carroll. New Zealander Carroll died in a motorcycle accident in 1986, having befriended Bono two years prior and subsequently toured with the Irish rock group. The band are in New Zealand for two massive gigs at Auckland's Mount Smart Stadium - the opening two nights of their Joshua Tree Tour. It's U2's first visit to our shores since 2010. The Joshua Tree Tour sees the band play the 1987 album in full every night, alongside other hits from their extensive back catalogue. Taking the stage a little after 8.30pm, the band opened with Sunday Bloody Sunday from their album War, with Bono promising fans an "epic night of rock 'n' roll" we wouldn't forget. "Thank you for having us back in your country [and] in your lives." But it was Bono's rendition of One Tree Hill, written after Carroll's death, that hit home for the 40,000-plus crowd. "We sort of adopted him, or perhaps it was the other way round," Bono said. "We were very grateful for his companionship over those precious times,,, He was taken from us too soon, but in a way he's still very present." The pre-show publicity for The Joshua Tree Tour boasted about it having the largest high-res LED video screen ever used in a touring show. Seeing it up close really makes you appreciate how much effort goes into staging such a monumental performance.'

Alex Behan for - read in full here.
'The stadium goes dark, Whole of The Moon plays loudly and the crowd audibly bristle with excitement as U2 walk out one by one. Larry Mullen Jr is first and sits at the drum kit to begin Sunday Bloody Sunday. The band begin small, on the little baby stage that protrudes into the crowd. It's as intimate as a stadium gets, lights are minimal but the sound is pure. Just four guys making noise to a stadium of happy fans. Where The Streets Have No Name begin and the video screens light up. Bono is out of the gate prowling up and down the massive length of the main stage… The screens are devastatingly bright, vivid and clear. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For begins as images of haunting black and white deserts dwarf the band. Bursts of colour and mountain ranges in time lapse hyperrealism as we hear With Or Without You. Oh wow, there's Bono's voice. Still got it. Bullet the Blue Sky, shall we take a moment to appreciate the genius of The Edge? Not only is he controlling that knife edge feedback crescendo and those crunching chords, he's also doing the background whoops on vocals. After years of hearing them on record and perhaps not fully registering, it sinks in what an amazing guitarist he is. The tribute to Greg Carroll comes and Bono speaks of how feel Greg is is still present with the band today. He even attempts a little te reo, did Bono just say e hoa? Launching into One Tree Hill anyone in the crowd who has been holding back til now lets it all out. The blood red moon shines big on the screen and as the song comes to a close Greg Carroll's smile beams at an appreciative crowd….
...Then comes a quick-fire round of recent hits to round out the main set before allowing the crowd reset for a massive, deserved and predictable encore. During Ultra Violet in the encore, names and faces of influential and important women are shown on the giant video screen. There are Kiwis there too amongst the Japanese Suffragettes and Ellen DeGeneres. Helen Clark, Kate Sheppard and our current Prime Minister of course but also Ākenehi Tōmoana, a strong advocate for women from the century before the century before this one. They've done some homework. Before the last song Bono takes a moment to reflect on the events in Christchurch this past March. He speaks about strength and solidarity and shares that some of the people from that terrible event are here in the crowd tonight. He launches into One, and the crowd sing in unison. It's almost like these guys have done this before.'

@madfl3a : BOOM! Starting loud! Hit those drums Larry! We've missed ya! Sunday bloody sundaaaay 

Bono is talking to the crowd after Vertigo, saying hello "from Ireland people to island people". Joking now about how he was "diagnosed with megalomania from an early age”.

my first thought about #TheJoshuaTreeTour2019 in Auckland: Wasn't the tribute to Greg Carroll just beautiful? so lovely! thank you so much to the U2 team who worked on that

“What-a-we got? What do we got for Christchurch tonight?"  (During 'Sunday Bloody Sunday')

"This is not a moment to take a word like 'freedom' for granted is it? If you believe in freedom, let's see your light." (during 'Bad”)

"Here you still are. Here we still are. What a blessing!" - ('I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For')

"Tonight our prayer is that we have one of those epic nights of rock and roll. A night we won't forget. A night to let go of some things and hold on to others."

AJ2 : 'Brilliant show tonight and even though not in the stadium you could feel Bono's emotions coming through the wires loud and clear during “One Tree Hill.” “Love is Bigger Than Anything in its Way” was another highlight. Goosebumps hearing a chorus of voices from New Zealand singing it so strong. Looking forward to what they have up their sleeves for tomorrow night'.

Add your own review and photos below..

    Bad in Mumbai - Give Peace A Chance...
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    So worth camping out for
    Just when I thought I was too old to do this, we camped. And it was absolutely worth it. Never doubt the commitment of the U2 fans. Thanks for a great show!
    Magic Day!!!
    After meeting Adam and The Edge on Wednesday evening after their rehearsal i was already on a high!! But Friday just took me to another place!! Such a beautiful sound and after 40 years still so powerful, the energy!! Thank you so much for coming downunder.
    Amazing show
    I was too young to experience the Joshua Tree in its day, but maybe this is even better than the real thing. The band just seems to get better with age.
    Thanks from me
    Bono, The Edge, Larry, Adam you guys were epic. Totally loved Friday nights show and the trip down memory lane with a few of the classic oldies, the into one of best Albums of all time and hearing the whole of The Joshua Tree live, rounded out by a number of other defining tracks from your career. NZ has missed you being here for far too long and on behalf of my fellow Kiwis thanks for coming back to grace us with your amazing talents. Please don't take another 10+ years to come visit again. PS, I would love the day when I have the chance to meet you in person, either in this world or the next.
    My son's name is Joshua because of this
    I went to the U2 concert last night where they played the album ‘The Joshua Tree’ in its entirety. I went with my son - Joshua. (Yup). When Bono said, “That’s the end of side one”, my son said, “What’s side one mean”? So, there’s that. Great show. Everything you'd expect and more. If you do something for 40 years, you will get good at it and they have.
    Can't go, but wish everyone an amazing and fantastic time!! For U2 and the whole crew...wish you a fantastic/ great and safe tour❤
    First night nerves...again
    Flew all the way to Vancouver for the first night of JT30 in 2017 and will see both nights in my home town of Sydney but the opportunity to see the first night of JT2019 was too good to resist. Only a couple of weeks to go now and getting very excited.
    Britt Hunchak
    We'll see you again, when the stars fall
    My best friend and I came to NZ as teenagers in November 1989. We had no idea that U2 was touring with the Love Comes to Town Tour so were too late to get tickets. We were devastated. We waiting outside the stadium to try and hear what we could. Not the experience we were hoping for but someone gave us their ticket stub after the show and I have kept ever since. We have gone to many U2 shows over the years but have always felt regret over not seeing them in NZ. Well, that will be remedied come November 8th! Here we come boys - only took us 30 years! We are so excited to be seeing them in Aotearoa!
    In honor of Greg Carroll: "One Tree Hill
    Hi all! Take a look at my idea of visiting the One Tree Hill on the evening before the first show and honoring Greg Carroll by singing "his" song: Maybe you want to join!
    Glad you’re coming to NZ!
    Having previously seen U2’s PopMart in Cape Town back in 1998 (for some unknown reason omitted from U2’s Tour list?) and also on the 2005 Vertigo Tour at Twickenham Stadium, I for sure know we’re in for a treat!!
    On the way !!
    Flights from UK booked and tickets for Auckland & Sydney sorted. Just have to amuse myself for 15 days between shows, Can't wait.
    Under the shadow of One Tree Hill
    Back at Mount Smart a short hop skip and jump from One Tree Hill (now no tree hill...), it's been 9 long years since U2 were last in Auckland. Seen every tour since Love Comes to Town. Missed The Joshua Tree Tour back in '87, so hoping this second chance is well worth the wait! What am I saying... of course it will be!
    San Diego 2017 U2 the best concert I’ve
    It will be awesome.. it was 2 and a half hours and it was a stellar concert.
    Scott Cleaver
    For tonight at last...i am coming home..
    After 9 long years the boys are coming back to NZ with the album that's dedicated to a Kiwi :) Last time they were here I had the privilege of driving Bono and The Edge for a week on the 360 tour....and the whole band are so lovely and down to earth. Looking forward to singing and dreaming out loud again!!!! Hello to the Murphy boys too.... Darren and Brian :) Hope to catch up for a Hello Hello :) Scott (NZ)
    Rock at its Very Finest
    I have been to three U2 shows, When Love Comes To Town with BB King, U2 360, Vertigo and ZooTv. Each of the concerts no words can describe other than jaw dropping awesomeness. I won two tickets today and cant wait to see THE VERY BEST and GRATEST BAND return to Auckland for The Joshua Tree Tour 2019. U2 are a band who have eyes wide open on many issues around the world and know what to do for their fans ''on and off'' stage. Bring it on for another super concert guys!! Thanks for coming down to this small corner of the world with your awesome show!!
    It’s a classic
    The Joshua Tree is to rock and roll what the Chanel suit is to women’s couture. Doesn’t matter how many other great records or beautiful designer creations you have , you go back to the one that tells the story or paints a picture best . Some things are just timeless and last 30 years for a reason .
    Auckland here we come
    Got to see the 2017 tour in Seattle and Dublin. Bucket list to see them in Auckland so the planning starts now here in Denver as we got our tickets yesterday.
    *th November 2019 will mark 30 years to the day since i went to my very 1st Concert and it was u2 Love Comes To Town Tour November 8th 1989 in Wellington. I am a crazy mad u2 fan and words cannot express how much they mean to me. I hope i can get tickets.
    This is a great show
    Lucky enough to see this show in Rome and Dublin in '17. It is a great show and I can't wait to take my Daughter to her first U2 experience!!!
    Here we go again !
    Saw the 2017 tour in London, you guys down under are in for the greatest show on earth, see you in NZ.
    It's a Beautiful Day
    It's a beautiful day when you can get presale tickets to THE JOSHUA TREE TOUR 2019!
    Hey, I'm off up one tree hill with or without you and I'm going to be running to stand still, so I guess I still haven't found what I'm looking for because the streets have no name in God's country.
    So excited
    i was there in a tiny venue in Manchester on the Boy tour they simply blew me away, i have been a massive fan ever since. Not seeing U2 for 9 years has been torture,
    Joshua Tree Tour 2019 - Auckland
    On my bucket list to see you guys live ! I hope I can get two tickets this Tuesday morning ;-)
    since I will follow ..I have followed...can not wait to see them again in gods own to get tickets
    Another JT Tour
    Went to JT Tour 2 years ago in Toronto, Canada. I should've waited 2 years as it's closer to home now :D But definitely won't miss this one!
    So long & so good
    Sooo looking forward to this gig. First saw U2 at Logan Campbell centre in 1984 with the Mockers as the opening act!!
    U2 on my birthday!!! SOOOO excited! What more could a girl want? If I can get tickets....
    Welcome home
    My boys are finally coming back... I’ve waited all my life for this...
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