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Affable frontman Dave Grohl promised an Air Canada Centre crowd the "biggest Foo Fighters show yet," and hinted at surprises early, but the near-capacity throng could not have expected a cameo appearance from guitarist Alex Lifeson and bassist Geddy Lee of Canadian rock legends Rush on Saturday night.

The pair joined Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins for YYZ, a spiralling progressive-rock instrumental from Rush's 1981 album Moving Pictures. The members of the two bands know each other through Nick Raskulinecz, a U.S. record producer who has worked with both groups, most recently on Rush's Snakes & Arrows album in 2007.

Later, with appreciative comments on Canadian folk music icon Stompin' Tom Connors, Grohl further endeared himself to his Toronto audience. The 130-minute performance was the fourth of an eight-concert Canadian tour by the Grammy-winning alternative rockers, in support of their latest album Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace. Future dates include Winnipeg's MTS Centre, March 25; Saskatoon's Credit Union Centre, March 27; Edmonton's Rexall Place, March 28; and Vancouver's Pacific Coliseum, March 30.