Foo Fighters rock the stage regardless of venue size

By Nolan Stout, Staff Writer

September 19, 2012

The Foo Fighters have proved that no matter the size of the venue, they can still put on an amazing show.

On Sept. 5, the band performed a three and a half hour concert at The Fillmore in Charlotte, N.C.

“I’m not sure, but I think we might break the record for the longest Foo Fighters show tonight,” said front man Dave Grohl.

No stranger to long concerts, the Foo Fighters played for two hours and 45 minutes the last time they were in Charlotte. That concert was played at the Time Warner Cable Arena to over 13,000 people back in November 2011. To Grohl, that wasn’t so long ago.

“That’s like a week in rock star time,” said Grohl.

On Sept. 5th, it was for a packed house of 2,000. When tickets went on sale, they sold out in less than ten seconds.

The Fillmore is a general admission venue and fans began lining up around 8 a.m., nearly 12 hours before doors opened.

In contrast to the Time Warner Cable Arena, there was no room for the casual fan at this concert. The totality of real Foo Fighters fans gave the air an electricity of excitement. There were people singing along to every song. Even the seven songs played from the band’s first record in 1995 received a great response from the crowd.

Playing in a big arena, it is hard to make a fan in the stands feel like they are on the front row on the floor. Back in November, Grohl accepted that challenge and made everyone at the arena feel just that.

However, that cannot compare to actually being front row, up close and personal, in a small venue. One may wonder how a big rock band could play a show in a tiny venue and sound just as good, if not better, than the big arena. Grohl may be the only person in the world that knows that secret.

Before the night began, no one expected such a marathon set. The general consensus was that the small venue would actually cut down the typical set list. When the band went off for their encore after 20 songs, there was almost a sense of relief that the crowd would get a typical set.

The Foo Fighters seem to have an uncanny ability to make every song sound just as perfect live as the recording.

After coming back and playing two songs, Grohl paused and shocked the crowd.

Instead of only playing all of their top chart songs, the Foo Fighters decided to play some old and some less known songs.

The band then launched into a 15-song encore that excited every fan in attendance.

The Foo Fighters did not go to this tiny venue because they have lost popularity. Quite the contrary, their last record Wasting Light was their first album to debut at No. 1 and they have sold over 10 million albums in the U.S. alone. The band has also been nominated for 25 Grammy Awards, winning 11.

While the Foo Fighters put on a great show in any arena, it just cannot compare to the show in the small venue. The small venue opens up room for Grohl to go out in the crowd during a song, stand on the bar and interact with the fans (which he did). At a large venue, it’s hard to get really close to the fans. Grohl goes out to a secondary stage and interacts with the crowd as much as possible, but at the Fillmore, it felt like a private show. The fans felt like the band was playing for them. It was an amazing show.

Possibly the last great rock band still around in an age of pop, the Foo Fighters have made it clear that Rock ‘n’ Roll is not going to die.