Sunday, June 8, 2008

Foo Fighters Play Historic Gig on Second Sold Out Night at Wembley

The Brits have a love affair with Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters. This has been evident for a while now with the band playing many festivals across the pond, selling loads of albums in the UK, and receiving a large amount of airplay on BBC Radio.

On 7/7/07, following their Live Earth set at the massive Wembley Stadium in northwest London, Dave Grohl annouced from the stage, “you know we’ll come back and play here … eventually”. Eleven months later to the day, last night, Foo Fighters played the second of two consecutive sold out shows, fulfulling his promise of returning to the venue. Selling out Wembley elevates the Foo Fighters to rock god status and puts them on the shortlist of bands who have completed the feat. The venue holds around 85,000 in concert format, so over the two nights 170,000 tickets were sold. They are only the fourth musical act to play the new Wembley on their own (Concert for Diana and Live Earth not included) and the second act to sell it out. George Michael and Metallica didn't manage to sell all of their tickets, but reportedly Muse was able to sell out the venue on two nights in June 2007. Muse had the added benefit of performing the first proper gig at the new site.

Reviews coming out of the first night of the Foo Fighters gigs were extremely positive with reports of Dave Grohl becoming emotional while thanking the enormous crowd of supporters. On the second night, however, the band put on a show that will go down in history. Early on in the night Grohl reportedly said from the stage, "We're gonna do something we’ve never done at a Foo Fighters show and it's gonna blow your shit out the door! Tonight this is gonna be the show that we’re gonna be talking about for the next 20 years!" And he's most likely right, given that half of Led Zeppelin, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones, emerged during the encore to join Dave and drummer Taylor Hawkins on Zep classics 'Rock'n'Roll' and 'Ramble On'. Taylor took lead vocals on the earlier song and Dave got behind the kit. Zep singer Robert Plant is currently on the road in the States playing much less rockin' music with Phish collaborator Alison Krauss.

The encore ended with the Foo Fighters performing "Best of You" and was preceded by Dave shouting "welcome to the greatest fucking day of my life!" I'm pretty sure many in attendance would agree with that statement. One commenter on the NME site stated,
"I'm typing this recovering from drinking Jaeger bombs all night after celebrating one of the best gigs I've ever seen. When Jimmy Page came on Wembley just went mental. What an athmosphere. That has to be the best gig I have ever seen. Dave & Taylor were jumping up and down on stage like they had just one the lottery after they finished the songs with Jimmy Page. Unbelievable"
Highlights from both nights will be replayed on BBC Radio 1's Zane Lowe show from Monday at 2PM EST.

Rock N' Roll (with Dave Grohl introducing Jimmy and John):

Ramble On:

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