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Volume 71, Issue 18, Thursday, September 15, 2005

Life & Arts

Fighters fade under success' bright lights

By Tina Marie Macias
The Daily Cougar

When the Foo Fighters entered the mainstream music scene in 1999 with "Learn to Fly," they were a breath of fresh air for a scene clogged with prefabricated pop groups and shallow rappers.

The band seemed beautifully original with quirky music videos and amazing stage presence in small venues.

But now, six years later, the band hasn't changed. That would be fine if every other band didn't now sound like them. They've fallen into a void of unoriginality and their show Tuesday at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion made this more than evident.

Todd Macek/The Daily Cougar

When the Foo Fighters played Tuesday, fumes in the air may have been the only thing keeping fans from realizing how sub-par the performance was.

It seemed strange to see elementary-aged kids and marijuana smokers unite for the show. The fans seemed happy enough -- during "Break Out" one girl climbed onto her boyfriend's shoulders and ripped off her shirt. Someone should have reminded her that it wasn't a KISS show.

Sure, the band played a wide variety of songs from its recent release In Your Honor to its first, self-titled album and pleased many of its fans. But just because 4-year-olds like Barney, it doesn't mean he's any good.

Maybe if the band had played its hour-and-a-half set in a small setting with the walls pulsating and its fans sweating from the excitement instead of Houston heat, its show would have been decent. 

But instead, the show seemed less-than-mediocre in the large venue. Frontman Dave Grohl made an effort to connect with the audience, but it was a lost cause.

The highlight of the Foo Fighters' set, unfortunately, was during their encore when drummer Taylor Hawkins switched places with Grohl.

If Grohl, the former drummer of Nirvana, would have given the fans what they wanted -- a drum solo -- or if Hawkins' voice was any good, maybe it would have been a good idea. But it wasn't.

It's sad to see a once great band turn so generic and fall below average. If all the Foo Fighters' fans hadn't been smoking marijuana, maybe they would have noticed.

Foo Fighters

@ Verizon Wireless Theater

Verdict: You can take the band out of a small club, but (unfortunately) you can't take the small club out of a band.

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