Bono and the boys rock the Brandenburg

 

Tonight in Berlin, it was Achtung Babyone more time.

Nearly 20 years after recording their famous album here, Bono and the boys from U2 rocked the Brandenburg Gate tonight before 10,000 cheering fans

Drenching the famous monument in emerald green light, the band delivered a rousing Sunday Bloody Sundayas a fan’s tricolour fluttered in the night air.

The anthem to the lost lives of 1972 hit an emotional chord with Berliners on a spot where, just two decades ago, it was shoot-to-kill.

As the city kicks off five days of celebrations to mark the fall of the wall here in 1989, the former no-man’s-land was transformed into one-man’s-land: Bono.

The Dublin band — by special request of the mayor — took to the stage in Berlin and launched into One.

On what was once a Cold War divide, Bono sang that only love can heal such a scar.

They marched through Magnificent, from their new album before Sunday Bloody Sundaywas greeted with roaring approval, and ample support from rapper Jay-Z.

“Thanks for sticking with us over the years,” said Bono, recalling their Berlin spell in 1990 when they “wrote some tunes, met some beautiful spirits”.

After a rocking Beautiful Daythey vibrated Vertigoloud enough around Pariser Platz for even the dancing American embassy staff to hear behind their bombproof glass windows.

The Irish party continued over at the MTV Europe Music Awards where television actor and German pop legend David Hasselhoff revealed he is buying a pad in Ireland: “the Hassle Castle”.

Meanwhile Irish woman Gillian Deegan was chosen from 100 “fanwalkers” who hiked from Hamburg to Berlin to present an award.

Back out with U2, renowned film director Wim Wenders was rocking out with the crowd, enjoying the music and casting an admiring eye on the light show.

“Nice to have the boys at the gate,” said the band’s many-time collaborator.

After wrapping things up with Surrender and a “God bless,” the fans streamed home, cold but happy.

“It was a great concert, they were in great form,” said middle-aged fan Arthur Schrödinger. “Bono is ageless, and I find it good too that he’s political.”

American fan Dahlia was thrilled at the free concert.

“It’s good that U2 are doing this for the public,” she said, “the MTV awards are just all about VIPs.”

As organisers of the gig and the subsequent awards show, MTV erected big screens on Unter den Linden to allow fans without tickets see the concert.

They also slapped their corporate logo on panels of the original Berlin Wall alongside a sign reading “No Graffiti Please”.