One of the band’s worst-kept secrets, the website’s countdown was finally unveiled to be a private show for the people of Frome in the UK, and an official announcement that Foo Fighters will be headlining on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury on June 24, 2017.
Fans holding the official boarding passes (and a few ‘standby passengers’ who showed up to try their luck) queued at Cheese & Grain, a not-for-profit venue owned by Glastonbury organizer Emily Eavis, as others around the world watched and waited online. The countdown ended and, after a brief delay and a “please stand by” test pattern (the same used on foofighters.tv, suggesting the site was intended for a similar purpose), the feed cut to a clip of the band on the festival site, ‘casually’ discussing the festival and where they might play seeing as they were already there. (Recent experience tells us it wouldn’t be a Foo Fighters announcement with a bit of ham acting.)
Then they were off, opening with ‘Learn To Fly’ and an obvious wink to the Obelisk Airlines campaign. Another sign that this event heralded the start of a new era was the setlist, which was markedly fresher than the standard list they’d ran with for the Sonic Highways tour and its similarities to the Wasting Light tour before it. This meant no one could really anticipate what would be coming next and the event was made all the more thrilling.
“This is going to be an entirely different show”, Dave teased regarding the Glastonbury announcement, adding, “if we’re having a good time, anything could happen”. As far as this show went, however, the band already had some tricks up their sleeves and were ready to go wherever the mood took them.
A breakdown in the middle of ‘The Pretender’ teased material from the upcoming album, with the line “keep your pretty promise to yourself”. Although it barely lasted one minute, it was enough to whet many appetites for what Foo Fighters have in store for us. The song also wrapped up with Dave working in extra lyrics like “she’s super freaky” and “help me, Rhonda”, references to the mash-up that did the rounds late last year.
A second snippet came at the end of ‘This Is A Call’, a heavier jam with a Motorhead-spirited intro and featuring the lyrics: “They say that nothing’s free / you could run with me / if you wanted to”. Titles for these two teasers are not yet known.
An audience request for ‘Wattershed’ steered the band in the direction of playing with their older material, bringing out more tracks from the first and second albums than we’ve seen on setlists in recent years. They were clearly having fun at this point and Dave’s vocals, which were quite rough at the beginning, had warmed up enough to tackle the throwbacks and deep cuts.
This private show also marks the first time that a song from Saint Cecilia has been played in public. ‘Sean’ was played during the concert/livestream, but fans heard the band rehearse ‘The Neverending Sigh’ during soundcheck. ‘Saint Cecilia’ was on the setlist but not played.
Dave showed his appreciation and hinted at more to come after the show on Twitter:
- Learn To Fly
- White Limo
- Something From Nothing
- The Pretender (feat. Song teaser #1)
- My Hero
- Cold Day in the Sun
- These Days
- Times Like These
- All My Life
- Skin and Bones
- This Is A Call (feat. Song teaser #2)
- Hey, Johnny Park!
- Monkey Wrench
- Best of You
- Wattershed (audience request)
- Big Me
- For All The Cows
- Enough Space