Nowadays, when you go to a concert it’s not always a given that the performer will be there to give their all, to perform to you and enjoy the whole environment of live music. This doesn’t necessarily take away from the performance if the music is good enough. For example, when Kanye West performed at Vector Arena in ’08 with his Graduation tour, he didn’t say a word, but with Daft Punk’s design and West’s presence it was still an incredible show. Then on the flip side you get performers like Katy Perry whose music is catchy enough but truly brought to life by her incredible energy and interaction with the audience.
On Tuesday night at the Foo Fighters, I think I caught a glimpse of the best of both worlds. It was a concert that will quite possibly go down as the best I’ve ever been to.
We got to Western Springs Stadium as Kairo Knife Fight were just finishing and were soon experiencing the awesome that is Fucked Up. It was a really down to earth atmosphere, really Summer feeling even if the sky was belting down. People were chilling with drinks in hand, the occasional kid hanging with his parents and then Damien Abraham running around the grass jumping on people whilst the rest of the band carried on onstage. I’ve never heard Fucked Up before and to be honest that part of the show is a bit of a blur but I’ll definitely be looking them up.
With the rain starting to ease into an occasional drizzle Tenacious D roared into show mode with Jack Black and Kyle bantering from possibly the first second. Although when I say banter I mostly mean Jack Black being a cock and Kyle responding. It was a surreal experience seeing the D live. Black just isn’t the sort of guy you expect to see in real life and he was as hilarious as you’d ever expect. If he hadn’t been so close I possibly could have thought I was watching a sexed up version of School of Rock. (Sexed up in a kinda gross pizza and tummy rubbing way.) It was hilarious hearing and seeing all of the couples joining up for Fuck Her Gently and it felt like we were all at a house party when they played Tribute.
The most important and major highlight of course was the Foos themselves however. Last time the Foo Fighters came I actually had tickets, but for some reason or another my friend and I ended up not going and selling our tickets on trademe. I now regret that decision immensely as they were one of the best live acts that I have ever seen. Playing for two hours and forty five minutes they kicked the game off with a bang, playing All My Life. From there we got nearly all the hits, my favourites of the latest album, Wasting Light, some instrumentals and even the song that’s only popular in Germany, Wheels. Throughout the set there was also heaps of banter, like so much that it didn’t feel like you were one in a crowd of fifty thousand, but just there chilling with the band. I think that it’s that, that makes the Foo Fighters so fucking fantastic.
A major highlight for me of all this banter was Dave Grohl talking pretty frankly about their music, not so much in terms of actual musical processes but the fact that now a days they don’t play for money so much as for the fact that they fucking love playing music. That’s why they played for nearly three hours, because they will play until they get kicked out. They even promised that they would come back again (no doubt soon, going by their track record) to play the Auckland Town Hall again, and this time for four or so hours. I can’t think of many other musicians who would do that.
By the end of the night, the crew were all gagging for Everlong. It’s that one particular song that seems to stand out, I don’t even know why, but when they opened up with it, as the last song, the crowd which had been starting to droop a little erupted and we bashed it out to the bitter sweet end.
This concert was such a huge affair, more like a mini festival almost that it’s really hard to describe it in one coherent post. In addition to what I’ve mentioned they made a music video for These Days, (the best song Grohl thinks that he has ever written), Grohl got up on a mini stage behind the camera/ sound tours to play to the people at the back of the stadium, Kyle and Jack Black got on stage in their boxers and suspenders to dance along to Tie Your Mother Down (A Queen cover), I mean really I’m just scratching the surface, but let me tell you now, even if you only vaguely like these guys just go if you get the opportunity. It’ll be one heck of a show.