Foo Fighters played their “last show for a long time” as they headlined the final night of Reading Festival tonight (August 26).
The band played a two-and-a-half hour set with a setlist that differed wildly from their 21-song effort at Leeds Festival on Friday (August 24), this time airing a full 26 songs.
Speaking to the crowd, frontman Dave Grohl said that he felt this was a special night and that it marked the end of the band’s tour in support of their latest album ‘Wasting Light’. Speaking early on in the set, he said: “Well, well, well. The fucking Reading festival. You guys realise we’ve got a lot of songs to play. It’s the last show of the tour and it’s the last show for a long time.”
Grohl was in a reflective mood, dedicating ‘These Days’ to his former bandmates in Nirvana, Kurt Cobain and Krist Novoselic, telling the audience before he played the band’s recent single “I’d like to dedicate this song to a couple of people who couldn’t be here tonight. This one’s for Krist and this one’s for Kurt.”
He also brought his daughters Violet and Harper onstage and dedicated ‘Walk’ and ‘Monkey Wrench’ to each of them respectively. As well as this, the singer also dedicated the set to Miti Adhikari, a BBC engineer who worked with Grohl numerous times and retires from work today,
Grohl’s bandmates also found time to praise him, with Taylor Hawkins telling the crowd that he was thrilled to be onstage with “the greatest musician of this generation”. Grohl responded by telling the crowd cheekily that he didn’t enjoy such attention.
The set drew from across the band’s career, but did include seven tracks from their self-titled debut album, including the rarely aired ‘Exhausted’ and ‘Alone + Easy Target’. It also featured a very rare airing of ‘Winnebago’, which featured on ‘Pocketwatch’, the cassette tape Grohl recorded on his own before he put the band together.
Speaking about this track, he said: ”First time we ever played here, we played in the tiny tent and it was the hottest show we ever played. They asked us to headline and we said ‘No! We don’t to headline the first time we ever play in England’. This was the first song we ever played.”
It had been rumoured during the day that Grohl would acknowledge the 20th anniversary of Nirvana‘s seminal headline spot at the festival with a cover of one of their tracks. This didn’t materialise, though he did speak about that day and, as they did then, he got the crowd to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to his mother.
He said of this: “In 1992 when Nirvana played here, the last show we ever played in England, you sang happy birthday to my mom. Here’s your chance.” They duly responded with the song.
The set, which also included a cover of Pink Floyd‘s ‘In The Flesh?’, ended with a rousing airing of ‘Everlong’ and a firework display.
Foo Fighters played:
‘All My Life’
‘Learn To Fly’
‘Cold Day In The Sun’
‘I’ll Stick Around’
‘Hey Johnny Park!’
‘Alone + Easy Target’
‘This Is A Call’
‘In The Flesh?’
‘Best Of You’
‘Times Like These’
‘For All The Cows’
Earlier on, Pulled Apart By Horses had kicked things off on the Main Stage with a rousing half-hour set that offered up some choices cuts from their new album ‘Tough Love’.
Playing after them, The Gaslight Anthem drew a massive crowd to the Main Stage as they delivered a punchy, 45-minute set with tracks from across their whole career aired. Particular highlights included recent single ’45’, ‘American Slang’, ‘The 59′ Sound’ and the closing ‘Backseat’.
All Time Low followed them and dropped a cover of Blink-182‘s ‘Dammit (Growing Up)’ into their set, which suffered from a few technical hitches early on. After this was resolved though, the pop-punkers were able to entertain the sun-drenched crowd with a set that included ‘Time Bomb’ and new single ‘The Reckless And The Brave’.
After them, Kaiser Chiefs performed a greatest hits set, which took the crowd through the best bits of their recent singles collection ‘Souvenir’. They were followed by The Black Keys, who drew one of the biggest crowds of the weekend and celebrated the announcement earlier in the day of their first UK full arena tour with a hit-packed hour set that offered the best bits of their recent LP ‘El Camino’.
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