festivals Reviews

Best of FEQ 2018: An Unforgettable Night of Rock n Roll With the Return of Foo Fighters

By Sun Noor

The Plains of Abraham were filled once more with thousands of eager fans lined up as early as Sunday night for a night that mainly consisted of rock n roll, in celebration of the well awaited return of Foo Fighters in Quebec. The band certainly did not leave fans drowning in the Sunday rain this time, despite the heavy rain that hit the audience an hour prior to their set.

Foo Fighters’ appearance at the 51st edition of Festival D’Été de Québec (Quebec City Summer Festival) marked their first Quebec show since the atrocious thunderstorm that cut their set with only four songs in back in 2015 during The Broken Leg Tour. Once again despite festival gates only being opened at 6pm, tens of thousands of eager fans of all ages have been queued up since the previous night in hopes of the show running smoothly this time. In fact, some even hoped for something special given that their return was set as a make up date. With multiple rumours regarding the band’s early arrival surfacing social media outlets on Sunday and the years of anticipation building up for a make up gig for last time’s disastrous dilemma Nevertheless, the band promised to make it up to the audience at the start of the show, Grohl even exclaimed that the force of nature was simply not going to impede their set this time.

One of the most interesting aspects of the Concrete and Gold Tour is the fact that the band has chosen a wide range of up and coming artists such as Starcrawler alongside a few other bands such as Weezer, The Struts and some of my favourites which consist of ;Wolf Alice, The Kills, Slaves and Idles. Last night’s stellar opening acts were Frank Turner and his live arrangement, The Sleeping Souls, who have just released his seventh studio record Be More Kind back in May. Given that the record delves into todays vexed political climate and can be viewed as a social commentary of the world’s current state, Turner found an importance in making all audience members feel welcomed, in celebration of people coming together in order to enjoy the show, which called for such a sweet moment. As well, the promising young rockers who have gained critical acclaim following the release of their debut EP From the Fires, Greta Van Fleet were equally added to the bill, hitting the main stage (Scène Loto-Québec) right before the Foos. The four-piece outfit made their Quebec debut following two back-to-back sold out Toronto dates. One of the aspects that differs this band from most is undoubtedly their style and sound, which contains elements that are quite reminiscent of the sounds of the seventies. Their stage presence is also quite captivating, as they exert the confidence of bands that are twice their age. They also managed to transmit their energy onto the crowd, leaving them wanting more as they played each song in a jam-like manner, with the never ending guitar solos transitioning in between each track.

Despite Foo’s stage set up usually consisting of a central catwalk, bringing them closer to fans. Grohl emphasized the importance to “touching the people” figuratively of course, as each member including himself came down to the second story of the stage to do a solo. The band covered a wide range of classics such as “Another one Bites the Dust,” “Jump,” “Imagine” and “Blitzkrieg Bop.” The frontman also brought up the fact that he enjoyed Shawn Mendes’ FEQ set last night and even went as far as calling him a “bad motherfucker” for his ability to reciprocate the love and admiration presented by the crowd by equally “touching the people.” The night was filled with endless banter and nostalgic moments as the band made up for last time’s disastrous dilemma by elongating their set, playing until midnight and including some of their older songs and fan favourites from their extensive catalogue. As well, Grohl brought out his daughter Violet alongside the backup singers during “The Sky is a Neighbourhood” which became quite the ritual on this tour. Moreover, the fact that the band mentioned that they plan on never taking three years to return even though the final shows of for the North-American leg of the Concrete and Gold World Tour are due to take place in October after the annual Cal Jam festival suggests that they might embark on another tour. Regardless of how extensive or small their next set of shows appear to be, I hope that the band makes their return to Quebec and hopefully Montreal, which has been left out of their few tours.

Click here to purchase tickets to Foo Fighters’ upcoming tour dates.

Foo Fighters’ Set list consisted of:

  1. All my Life
  2. Learn to Fly
  3. The Pretender
  4. The sky is a Neighbourhood
  5. Rope
  6. Sunday Rain
  7. My Hero
  8. These Days
  9. Walk
  10. Under My Wheels (Alice Cooper cover)
  11. Another One Bites the Dust/Imagine/ Jump? Blitzkrieg Bop
  12. Under Pressure (Queen cover)
  13. Monkey Wrench
  14. Run
  15. Breakout
  16. Dirty Water
  17. Best of You
  18. Times Like These
  19. Everlong.

Here are more photos from that epic night:

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