Now two decades into a consistently compelling career that’s endured beyond countless flavors of the day, the Foo Fighters could very well be considered the ultimate saviors of modern rock n’ roll. Between a lauded history that dates back to the days of post-grunge through the recent “Sonic Highways” album and TV show trip around music’s most famous cities, the group finally crossed the threshold from arenas and festivals to selling out its inaugural Wrigley Field gig in seconds (with the surrounding streets lined from sidewalk to sidewalk with spillover fans unable to score a seat).
Though the Foos had no problem holding down the fort single-handedly, having three seminal support acts whose roots all revolve around the Windy City only enhanced the experience.
As the ferocious guitar grinds of “Everlong” kicked off the night, it was apparent Dave Grohl (bum leg and all), Taylor Hawkins, Nate Mendel, Chris Shiflett and Pat Smear are amongst the tightest players of the past twenty years whose tunes are likely to never go out of style. In fact, “Learn To Fly,” “My Hero” and “Times Like These” are all at least a decade old by this point, but thanks to their pummeling rhythms and the front man’s charismatic delivery (even while seated on his rock star throne of sorts), any of them could’ve just as realistically come from the current collection.
Of course, the Foos also made sure to spend ample time on “Sonic Highways,” a potent batch of psychedelically-charged rock that particularly leapt to life as local legend/Cheap Trick axe slinger Rick Nielsen joined the band on the ballsy “Something From Nothing.” Members also demonstrated their affinity for other greats of yesteryear on a handful of occasions, blazing through several Van Halen and Yes snippets during band introductions, plus The Rolling Stones’ “Miss You.” By the time the Foo Fighters rounded the bases with “Breakout,” the band all but clinched its likelihood of getting marked down right alongside such trailblazers in the history books, and as far as the closer future is concerned, expect to see shows no smaller than sports fields filling the forecast.
Though the Foos had no problem holding down the fort single-handedly, having three seminal support acts whose roots all revolve around the Windy City only enhanced the experience. Veterans Cheap Trick sparkled with its textbook brand of melodic power pop, ‘90s mainstays Urge Overkill ushered in the alternative era, while still powerful punks Naked Raygun gave the night a full circle feel after inspiring a teenaged Grohl at the Cubby Bear during his first ever concert, which clearly paid off in spades now that he’s graduated to the stadium across the street.