Foo Fighters at the 9:30 am Club. Photo by Jordan Grobe / JGro.be
When the 9:30 Club revealed the identity of the group that would play last night’s reopening show, the surprise artist wasn’t much of a surprise: Foo Fighters, whose frontman Dave Grohl has a long history. with the DC -Area punk scene and which played the opening of the 9:30 am sister venue, the Anthem in 2017. From Classes it was Foo Fighters.
But being in the room with an ecstatic sold-out crowd as the room came to life after being closed for a year and a half, watching a mind-blowing set from one of the most powerful rock bands in the world, a band that usually plays a lot more places like Madison Square Garden? Unbelievable.
The The 1,200-person club was full in a minute, and fans lined up outside the venue at 9 a.m. Thursday morning, more than nine hours before the doors opened. It’s safe to say people were extremely excited for this.
When the time for the show finally arrived, the mood was warmly familiar: an artificial fog drifted around the dark room and the eager hum of the crowd seemed almost calming. The atmosphere was good and there was a strong sense of camaraderie in the air. At a time when mask mandates are a source of frequent conflicts, aAlmost everyone I saw kept their face covering on diligently, without any arguments in evidence. People offered to help those who seemed to carry too much drink for two hands. I engaged in conversations with random strangers around me – something that felt as natural here as it would have been odd in pre-covid times.
Finally, around 8:45 p.m., the Foo Fighters took to the stage. As the crowd screamed in greeting, Grohl politely suggested, “Let’s sing a song together.” The band then went on to “Times Like These”, and the people in front of me were literally bouncing on the soles of their feet as the music piled up. The group then went through the favorites of the public: “The Pretender”, “My Hero”, “Learn to Fly”. Between songs, the band continued to perform while Grohl joked with the audience.
Throughout, Grohl seemed genuinely excited to be playing at the 9:30 am Club, which he said felt like a “family reunion.” (Earlier today, he reportedly recorded with his former band Scream at Inner Ear Studios, which are set to close soon.) Grohl noted that the club’s upper level railing was one of the best places to bang your head, and the gathered Foo fans cheerfully supported this theory all night long.
The band went through their extensive discography – “Shame Shame”, “These Days”, “Medicine at Midnight” – and mixed things up with the cover of Queen’s “Somebody to Love” which found Grohl on drums and Taylor Hawkins. singing. They even played “Weenie Beenie”, named after the local fast food restaurant.
As the setlist drew to a close, it was time for the bangers: “Best of You”, “Monkey Wrench”, “Everlong”. Grohl too revealed to the crowd that there will be a replica of the old 9:30 Club location right next to the new 9:30 Club. He joked that the Foo Fighters would likely be the ones to open this location as well. At least i think It was a joke. Otherwise, I will also be on the front line for this show.