A rock and roll thunderstorm rolled through Pittsburgh, PA on July 19th, as The Struts and Foo Fighters brought the Concrete and Gold Tour to the PPG Paints Arena. For this correspondent, the four-and-a-half-hour voyage from native West Chester, PA to Steel City was worth every pit stop coffee and radio station readjustment. A hot and steamy day’s weather gave way to a gusty evening in Pitt, as fans lined the block for miles to enter the sold-out performance. The tour itself has been met with sterling reviews, and their previous performance in Camden, NJ was nothing short of exhilarating and spectacular. Pittsburgh fans were in for a real treat tonight, and both bands did not disappoint.
The evening began with a raucous affair by the Struts, with lead singer Luke Spiller giving a Freddie Mercury-inspired and energy infused performance. Setting the tone for the remainder of the evening’s festivities, the Struts ran through seven songs of pure bliss. Beginning with the bouncy “Put Your Hands Up” and into entertaining joints like their brand new single, “Body Talks”, “Kiss This”, and their massive radio hit “Could Have Been Me”, Spiller and Co. ran through a medley of new and old, conducting a concise and spirited presentation. With their new album’s release on the horizon, The Struts have inspired a well deserved and solidly earned enthusiasm for themselves and continue to provide a quality rock and roll product.
Foo Fighters took the stage shortly after to thunderous applause. Dave Grohl never fails to impress, and his ability to maintain the level of dynamism throughout the duration of the set is a feat unmatched by most current lead vocalists, and performers in general. I’m convinced that just being in his aura added twenty years to my lifespan. The band dove right in, blasting through timeless records like “All My Life”, this correspondent’s favorite Foo Fighters song, “Rope”, and a remarkably extended performance of “The Pretender”. One of the most incredible points of the evening, however, belonged to drummer Taylor Hawkins, presenting a nearly ten-minute drum solo whirlwind that was equal parts focus, perfection, and showmanship. As every snare smash and cymbal crash was effortlessly exuded as the next, Hawkins cements himself as a permanent candidate for the Drummer’s Mount Rushmore. After a hilariously entertaining tease medley of Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust”, Van Halen’s “Jump”, and The Ramones’ “Blitzkrieg Bop”, the band performed a cover of David Bowie and Freddie Mercury’s “Under Pressure” with The Struts. Just when the show felt its most zenith, the band returned for a two-song encore, completing this incredible moment with the iconic “Everlong”.
The performance in Pittsburgh highlights a prolific portfolio from the Foo Fighters, spanning almost two decades, and accented by the majesty of The Struts. A mighty capstone to a fantastic voyage, the Concrete and Gold Tour remains as pure as the performers, timeless in their sound and tenor.
Check out the gallery below, courtesy of photographer Adam Barnard.
Setlist: Foo Fighters | PPG Paints Arena | Pittsburgh, PA | 7/19/18
All My Life, Learn To Fly, The Pretender, The Sky Is A Neighborhood, Rope, Drum Solo, Sunday Rain, My Hero, These Days, Walk, Imagine / Jump / Blitzkrieg Bop, Under Pressure, Monkey Wrench, Run, Breakout, Dirty Water, Best of You
E: Times Like These, Everlong