For Our Consideration: Dave Grohl brings intimacy and emotion to stadium rock

Most of the great rock shows of my life have been small, close-up affairs with familiar variables: drunk band at a hole-in-the-wall before they hit it big, or an epic set list at a divey club that raged on past four encores, or an intimate evening with a musician and their guitar, singing stories just a few feet away.

Massive shows, for a variety of reasons, don’t usually end up on best-of lists. They’re much too big for that intimate feeling; they’re performed by out-of-touch bands playing for ridiculous amounts of money; they usually feature songs the groups have been churning out for years. The set list is pat, and has been passed around online so that beer runs can be well timed. You have little in common and feel little connection to the crowd. You know there will be two encores. Perhaps some dry ice and …

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