Foo Fighters Deliver The Goods For Free

Grohl says his new guitar "looks like an old toaster."

By the time the Foo Fighters took the stage for a one-off

afternoon free show in Rockville, Maryland on Friday (May 16), the clouds that

had plagued the area in the morning had largely disappeared. But the 800 or so

people who turned out at the Congressional Plaza parking lot a half hour before

show still had an un-May-like wind to contend with.

Some bided their time

by clamoring for promo junk at the radio station vans that were on hand; others

ducked indoors to pack the aisles of concert sponsor Tower Records. The music

chain encouraged die hard Foo fans to pre-order (and pre-pay for) their copies

of the band's new album The Colour And The Shape four days before the

disc hits the streets. In exchange for their advance cash, fans took home a

four song sampler from the album. An informal survey of cashiers revealed that

response to the offer was a bit underwhelming. The operative word for this

Friday afternoon was "free."

By the time Foo Fighter leader and local boy

Dave Grohl greeted the crowd promptly at 4 p.m., the number of folks awaiting

him had grown to about 1,500. Wearing a long-sleeved white T-shirt and a big

grin, Grohl offered a buoyant "Hi," mentioned the upcoming album, and launched

into a new track called "Wind Up." The breeze had not yet died down, however,

making the song a muddy wash of vocals and drums, as sound from the guitar and

bass were carried off toward the rush hour traffic behind the stage. That wind

may also have been the cause of an airborne hat that popped Grohl early on,

although the cap may have been tossed by one of the kids packing the pit up

front. The parking was filled with more school cutters than Beltway work

ditchers, although there was a sizable contingent of parents there to watch the

youngest of the young 'uns.

Though the sound remained sketchy...

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