A Republican sits in the White House, a female prime minister leads the Tories into a UK election, and U2 take to the stage in Croke Park to play hits from their fifth album The Joshua Tree.

Plus ça change...

Trump eventually succeeded Reagan, and Thatcher made way for May, but this weekend U2 will look to prove they remain among rock’s top draws as they bring the Joshua Tree’s Anniversary Tour to GAA headquarters for two sold-out shows.

Thirty years on from the album’s release, the Dublin quartet will again bring tens of thousands of fans streaming down Jones’ Road, though this time those in attendance will pay a good bit more than the £14 (plus 50p booking fee) charged in 1987.

The concerts today and tomorrow promise fans the nostalgia of the 80s, reimagined for a modern audience.

Dutch photographer and film-maker Anton Corbijn, whose photography accompanied the original recording, again visited locations from the album’s artwork, such as Death Valley and Zabriskie Point, to produce a new series of films as a backdrop to the show.

These will feature in 8k resolution on a 200ft x 45 ft cinematic screen — almost the width of the stadium — that will be behind the group during the show, with promoters promising the fixture is the “largest un-obscured and highest resolution LED video screen ever used in a touring show”.

The tour will give a welcome boost to businesses. Dublin Chamber said the two shows will be worth €20m to the local economy, and that fans from outside Ireland in particular will bring trade for hotels and restaurants.

“A U2 concert in their hometown is a massive draw for the band’s incredibly loyal fan base,” said Aebhric McGibney, director of public and international affairs at Dublin Chamber.

“These aren’t just Irish concerts, they are truly international events, with fans travelling from all over the world,” he said.


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