U2 rolled out the year's best stage show in 2009 with their 360 Degree Tour, that featured The Claw, as seen in the picture to the left.
TPI Magazine hosts the Total Production International Awards which brings roadies, riggers, truckers and gofers together to vote on which rock tour blew the roof most spectacularly. U2 won it hands down, with The Edge's roadie Dallas Schoo picking up an award and the tour's chief production head Willie Williams getting two trophies.
The award is especially meaningful because it is decided by those workers that make the magic happen, and give Bono his ethereal platform.
The tour was criticized for its huge carbon footprint, and took steps to off-set the environmental impact.
The show is immense, traveling across the world with a team of 500 to erect towering stages, transported on a fleet of nearly 200 trucks.
Talking Heads lead man, David Byrne recently blogged some criticism about the wastefulness of the U2 tour, stating:
"Those stadium shows may possibly be the most extravagant and expensive (production-wise) ever: $40 million to build the stage and, having done the math, we estimate 200 semi trucks crisscrossing Europe for the duration. It could be professional envy speaking here, but it sure looks like, well, overkill, and just a wee bit out of balance given all the starving people in Africa and all. Or maybe it’s the fact that we were booted off our Letterman spot so U2 could keep their exclusive week-long run that’s making me less than charitable? Take your pick — but thanks, guys!"
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