Say this about U2's performance of "Invisible" on the premiere of "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon": The group certainly knows how to work an event.
Even more than U2's unveiling of "Invisible" during a Super Bowl advertisement, the Irish quartet's appearances on Monday's "Tonight Show" captured what the band in 2014 does best: spectacle.
Set up on the roof of the Rockefeller Center, U2 had a sunset-hour setting and dizzying -- distracting even -- heights as a backdrop. Perched 70 stories up, "The Tonight Show," perhaps indirectly, underscored that for U2 today it's the setting. the stage and the visuals that are paramount.
Give them thy stadiums, or elevate them into thy clouds.
Crammed onto the Top of the Rock with members of the Rutgers University Drumline, there didn't even appear to be space for LarryMullenJr. to fit a full drum set. Cameras swooped, the skyline twinkled and tightly packed fans bounced along. Forget the song, it was the novelty of the locale that captivated.
"Invisible" wasn't the only song U2 performed on "The Tonight Show." The band, after all, has an Oscar to campaign for, and Bono and Co. performed a mostly-acoustic rendition of "Ordinary Love" from "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" (the Roots joined in the song's final seconds). Oscar voting ends Feb. 25, and while the affable Fallon said he looks forward to U2 giving an Oscar acceptance speech, Bono here was more grounded.
"Can an animated character give a speech? It's probably more likely," Bono said, referring to the odds-on Oscar favorite "Let it Go" from Disney's "Frozen."
But even if U2 doesn't walk away with an Oscar, Fallon did get the sometimes too self-serious band to poke a little fun at itself when the host asked Bono to give a speech about a cup. Like three out of five U2 songs, the speech contained some platitudes about love.
"I can only give speeches about things I believe in, but I believe in this cup," Bono said. "It's not a cup really, it's a containier. It demands to be filled. It can be filled by love, or bad thoughts."
But Bono didn't stop there, adding the cup was held by Nelson Mandela, who in foreshadowing the 2014 Oscar race for original song declared Princess Elsa a "bad girl."
Cute, but that's Queen Elsa, Bono.
Watch "Invisible" on "The Tonight Show" below: