Foo Fighters dazzle in intimate sell-out show at House of Blues ahead of Rock Hall induction

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  • Photo by Danny Clinch
  • The Foo Fighters at the House of Blues

The last time Dave Grohl was in a Cleveland concert hall as small as the House of Blues was probably in the mid to late 2000s when, while in town for a show, he was went to the Beachland Ballroom as a fan to see The Sounds. (Surely someone who was at this concert also has a better memory than this messy-minded writer and knows the exact year.)

At that point, the Foo Fighters were already an arena group, halfway through a career that saw them inducted into the 2021 Rock Hall class over the weekend.

The band, like Green Day six years ago, performed sold out and cozy at the House of Blues days before their big night.

“We’re used to playing in cold arenas,” Grohl said between opening songs last night before a crowd crammed side by side from the pit to the back stairs. “And about 50, 60, 70,000 people. But that’s good. It’s good.”

It was good.

The novelty of seeing a band used to selling stadiums thanks to two decades of mega-hits was half the fun, with the Foo Fighters bringing every ounce of energy that makes these 70,000-seat shows intimate in a truly intimate venue.

Grohl and his company tore up a tight two-hour setlist that was featured on their tour this year, 27 years after the band recorded their debut album.

Sadly, they didn’t extract anything from that record last night, but they delivered a lot of deep cuts alongside massive hits – for “old school fans,” Grohl said. “I see you 50 years there” – and three covers, “Young Man Blues” by The Who, “You Should Be Dancing” by the Bee Gees and “Somebody to Love” by Queen, which Grohl took over at drums while Taylor Hawkins did his best Freddie Mercury. (See “You Should Dance” below.)

It was, to use Grohl’s description, nice, and inevitably one of those “you had to be there” shows meant to be talked about for years to come.

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