Foo Fighters Documentary Premiere Followed By Surprise Show

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Foo Fighters: Back and Forth premieres on VH1 April 8.
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Foo Fighters: Back and Forth,which premiered to a cheering audience last night at SXSW in Austin, opens with Dave Grohl looking back at his time as Nirvana’s drummer. He says the trio knew something was “weird” when jocks started showing up for shows, but “we never thought we’d sell a million albums.” Of course, this was before Nevermind sold more than 26 million copies and permanently altered rock’s DNA. The most enjoyable aspect of this rock doc, directed by Oscar-winner James Moll, is watching the very likable Grohl strike rock gold twice — no small feat for a teen who grew up touring under miserly conditions in the ’80s hardcore scene. In this clip, Dave, one of rock’s greatest drummers, explains how he came to create the Foos in the wake of Kurt Cobain‘s suicide:

The doc intersperses new and vintage footage with present-day interviews to track not only the Foos’ rise but also the interpersonal relationships of its past and present members. The climax comes when the band performs in front of 85,000 rabid fans at Wembley Stadium. Grohl asks the audience, “How the f*ck did this band get this big?” Then nearly loses his composure.

Back and Forth ends with the Foo Fighters recording their upcoming album Wasting Light in Dave’s garage (on tape, no less!), a process that is hilariously interrupted by his toddler-aged daughter, who’s trying to force Dave to make good on his promise to take her swimming. The Foos’ new album is produced by Nirvana producer Butch Vig and features a guest appearance by Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic. It’s the first time Grohl, Vig and Novoselic have been in the studio together since Nevermind. Add Foos’ (and former Nirvana) guitarist Pat Smear to the mix, and Wasting Light is as close to a Nirvana reunion as we’ll ever get.

The clip below features Bob Mould of Husker Du, who joins the Foos as a guest singer.

Those who attended the screening’s after-party were in for a rare treat as the Foo Fighters hijacked the relatively small amphitheater set up in the back of Stubb’s BBQ joint. The Foos did not just run through a few songs during this “surprise” show, but put on a blistering two-hour set, including all of the songs on the new album as well as their biggest hits — “My Hero,” “Everlong,” “Times Like These,” “Best of You,” “All My Life,” “The Pretender,” “Monkey Wrench,” and more. “There’s so many hot new acts to see [at SXSW],”said Dave towards the end of the set. “If it were up to me it would be a long night. But I’m afraid to break any rules. I might get dropped.”

Yeah, right.

Foo Fighters: Back and Forth will be released in theaters on April 5 and will premiere on VH1 on April 8 at 10/9c. “Wasting Light” will be available April 12. [Photo: Getty Images]

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Thanks to Chrysler and Samsung for sponsoring our SXSW coverage.

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