Foo Fighters rock Bluesfest | Ottawa Citizen

Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters performs on the RBC Ottawa Bluesfest, July 10, 2018.

Jean Levac / Postmedia News

Concert overview

Foo Fighters, Greta Van Fleet

City Stage, RBC Ottawa Bluesfest

The Foo Fighters have a response for the pundits who hold saying rock is at risk of extinction, sure to be taken over by nation music or pressured to the backburner by hiphop and R&B.

The Foos’ stance on the problem was apparent on Tuesday because the band demonstrated its vitality with a loud and thrilling knockout punch of a rock live performance in entrance of a sold-out crowd at RBC Ottawa Bluesfest.

“Hey, I know we’re at a bluesfest right now,” hollered singer-guitarist Dave Grohl, who was dripping with sweat by the second tune, “but I came here to play some rock ‘n’ roll. You want some rock ‘n’ roll?”

The crowd roared its approval, and off he went together with his bandmates, careening by a marathon, close-to-three-hour present that bristled with depth at each flip. The Grammy-winning U.S. rockers blasted out of the gates going full-tilt on All My Life, hitting prime gear in a fraction of a second and barely letting up on the gasoline, besides to banter with followers and introduce the band.

Blowing a kiss to followers, the 49-year-old Grohl promised to play no less than one tune from every of their 9 albums. He was clearly having a good time dashing throughout the stage, wielding his sky-blue guitar and screaming into the microphone, probably much more enjoyable than the followers packed onto the LeBreton Flats plaza. A various crowd starting from grizzled rockers to younger punks pumped their fists and sang alongside.

The tempo was intense by Learn To Fly and The Pretender, two of the Foos’ hottest and radio-friendly singles, and so they saved it up for The Sky is a Neighbourhood, one of many tracks from the most recent album, Concrete and Gold. Later on got here one other flurry of singles, together with Monkey Wrench, Breakout and Best Of You, plus a model of a more moderen tune, Dirty Water, that featured Grohl’s daughter, Violet, serving to out with the vocals.

The live performance additionally featured a depraved show of guitar dexterity by lead guitarist Chris Shiflett, which morphed into some blues for the event. “I don’t think we’ve ever played a blues song,” declared Grohl. “Let’s play a blues song.”

Somewhere within the center was an entertaining medley that included an ingenious keyboard mashup of the Beatles and Van Halen, in addition to snippets of Queen, the Ramones and extra.


The barrage of melodic onerous rock was interrupted for among the compulsory rituals of a rock live performance, together with, in fact, a drum solo. In one fascinating apart, drummer Taylor Hawkins referred to his time touring the world with Ottawa native Alanis Morissette. That’s when he first met Grohl, he mentioned, giving props to the town of Ottawa and Alanis for the chance that led to his lengthy profession with the Foos.

Alanis got here up once more when Grohl returned to the stage for an encore, teasing an Alanis tune and reminiscing in regards to the time he and Miss Thang had the identical pigtail coiffure in separate, mid-90s music movies. In honour of the “serendiptious hairdo” reminiscence, he performed that old-school Foos’ tune, Big Me, earlier than ripping by Times Like these and Everlong.

Grohl was properly conscious that it had been a decade for the reason that band final carried out in Ottawa. It was lengthy sufficient that anticipation was at a fever pitch for his or her Bluesfest debut, which was additionally one of many uncommon events the pageant has declared a sellout prematurely. Organizers opened the gates forward of schedule to accommodate the throngs, though they need to have had extra personnel serving beer, too.

The main-stage opener, by the way in which, offered additional proof of the constructive state of rock music. Michigan’s Greta Van Fleet consists of the three Kiszka brothers, with a pal, Danny Wagner, on drums. In their ’60s-inspired outfits of fringes, feathers and bellbottoms, the baby-faced crew performed with the fervour of Led Zeppelin and The Who mixed, their vitality targeted on a curly haired singer, Josh Kiszka, whose searing voice rose to Robert Plant-like heights. It was an ideal match for the Foo Fighters, solidifying the case that rock is most positively not lifeless.

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