Decibels of All Types

John J. Hlavaty ([email protected])
Tue, 28 Jul 1998 02:21:41 -0400

Des wrote regarding the Spice Girls:
>And they've also hit another record. At their show in Orlando, Florida,
>earlier this month (JUL98) the sound level reached an amazing 110
>decibels, beating the record held by the ROLLING STONES and U2.

Well, this is one record I don't mind U2 losing. :-D Plus,
when fans cheer for U2 or the Stones leading to the high
decibels, you know they are cheering for the music.
I am willing to bet that at this show, the high volume
was created by 20,000 screaming 11 year old. Ack!
I'll take the "quieter" U2 show anytime! :oP

Robbie then wrote:
>Oh course they're louder, have you ever heard 50,000 seven year old
>girls screeching at the top of their voices for 2 hours?
>I'm suprised it reached only 110. The little darlings will probably
>have premanent ear damage:p

I'm glad I wasn't the only one thinking this way! LOL!
The sad thing is that this is VERY true. This isn't some
bitter comment about the Spice Girls - the fact is, kids
and pre-teens are their biggest audience and if you
haven't heard a 7-11 year old girl scream lately, then you
might not realize how loud they can get. It deafens any
hoots and hollers a typical U2/Stones fan will do!

Prarit then butt in ;-D by writing:
>I've been wondering about this. Are they refering to the sound
>system used at the concert, or are they referring to crowd noise?

Despite my teasing, that's a great question (I say this
because I thought of it too :oP). However, whenever
I read about "concert noise" it's the monitoring of
the entire show - including audience noise. So if there
was a moment where some music combined with cheers
and/or explosion happened, this would account for
the high decibels.

Musically, I can easily see the Stones and U2 creating
more volume than the Spice Girls. This is why I believe
that the "noise" (is this a reference to the music or
the cheering - you decide :-D) came more from the fans.

Lucy wrote:
>Beer is the talker here because i reached into the group, grabbed a guy by
>his throat and pulled him to me. I told him that if he and his friends
>ruined this song for me I would kick his ass.

Followed by Des's:
>picking myself up off the floor. you go giiirrrl

WHOA! This definitely deserves a hearty "you go girl!" LOL! Just
remind me never to accidentally tap into you at an actual
U2 concert! (John envisions himself being pummeled into a fine
pulp after he brushes by Lucy as he simply tries to get
to his seat.)

Nikki wrote:
>Know what I was thinkin' this afternoon? I was thinkin', "Why in the
>world did U2 play Love Is Blindness at the end of many ZooTV
>concerts?!?" Yes, they played Unchained Melody after that, but...
>STILL! If I were at that ZooTV show, I would want a happier song with a
>faster pace to end the concert. If I was in that audience, I would have
>been bawlin'! I'd be sobbing and thinkin', "This night! This night
>that I've been waiting for, for SO long.... it's almost over. This
>night that I've bragged about forever, tellin' everyone, `I'm seein' U2
>in concert!!!'..... it's all gone now. It went so fast. Life goes too
>fast. I'll be dead soon! And this song. Love Is Blindness. How sad!
>This all is just one huge, sad moment. Oh God! This is terrible."
>That's what I'd be thinkin'. Love Is Blindness is a truly wonderful,
>deep song, with total FEELING.... but to me, it's a tear jerker.

U2 have always ended their concerts on this "down beat" side.
>From "War" through the R&H era, "40" was often used to end
the shows. You stated the popular show closers for the
ZOO era above and as we all know, during the "POPMart" era,
"One" or "One" followed by "Unchained Melody" or "MLK" was
used to end the shows.

I think the slow ending is a way to and the concert on a reflective
note. Many artists love to pull out their "big guns" on that last
song. They play their biggest hit and really jazz it up to the
extreme with wild solos. However, once again, U2 go against
this mainstream rock view and end their shows with a song
that makes one think and reflect upon life.

U2 ended one of the ZOO TV shows I attended with "Love
Is Blindness". The entire place was dark (emphasizing the
blindness theme). No stage lights, no audience lights, just
Bono's voice piercing through the darkness. At the time
I too thought it was almost a "concert killer" considering
the huge adrenalin rush of the entire show. But upon further
reflection, I realized that this was the perfect ending to the
concert. It was a halcyon moment of the show. The darkness
and simplicity of that final song contrasted exquisitely with
the bombardment of sights and sounds we witnessed throughout
the concert. It reminded me of how this was analogous to our
own lives. Often we feel inundated by the demands of our
lives as we are bombarded with tasks and responsibilities, but
it is the simple things that really make life worthwhile.

I cannot relate to your view of feeling horribly depressed
simply because the show is over. I never left a U2 concert
feeling this way. Rather, I viewed the concert as one of life's "simple
pleasures" and was happy to add it to my wonderful collection
of pleasant memories. Don't regret the concert ending, but
rather rejoice that you were able to be there. There will come
a time when U2 do stop performing. I'd hate to see you have
your last thoughts of U2 being so sad and negative. I'd much
rather have you realize that for those 2 hours you were able
to share in U2's music, even if for a moment.

Lastly, Sharon wrote:
>they are not so much my teachers as my kindred spirits in this journey
>through life, and a group who have the ability to bring me into contact
>with so many other kindred spirits out there.

Wonderfully stated Sharon! Many fans miss the "old" U2
because they want those political songs. However, it seems
that their desire for the "old" has not allowed them to
see what's right in front of them. I wonder how many U2
fans "got" that "Please" is perhaps one of U2's most political
songs ever?

That said, U2 really aren't *that* political. While "Please",
SBS, "Zooropa" and "Bullet..." stand out as political anthems, the
overwhelming majority of U2's songs have to do with three topics:
religion, God and love. And even when U2 write a love
song, often it's about the many facets of love, not a traditional
"ooh, I love you baby" type of song. They write about the
deeper, darker aspects of love. They write about brotherly love.
They write about the love of God for humanity. But again,
it seems that those who long for the "old" U2 only want to be
slapped across the face with the obvious. If they can't figure
out a song's meaning in 2 seconds, it must not be good.

So thanks Sharon for stating what I too have felt for years.
U2 have beautifull encaptured my political spirit, but they
go far beyond that. In many ways, I feel I've "grown up" right
along with them. And just like U2, I too am anxious for the
future and am all too willing to create the world I want to live in.



This archive was generated by hypermail 2.0b2 on Mon Jul 27 1998 - 23:25:16 PDT