The Good Guys of the rock scene are back. One of the best bands of their generation, Foo Fighters seventh studio album Sonic Highways has landed with a bang, the only way they know how.
It has been an interesting time for the Seattle 5-piece. Always a band that are open and honest, in 2011 they gave the public a captivating view of life on the road in the documentary Back and Forth and last year lead singer Dave Grohl produced and directed the Sound City Film, documenting the Sound City recording studios in Los Angeles.
While both of these projects were received very well by the public, the fans have been eagerly awaiting the new album.
The band had been teasing their legion of fans with little teasers and snippets of the album, and as is the modern way, songs have leaked out before the official release. It is the band’s shortest album standing at eight songs, but they average over 5 minutes per song not leaving their fans short-changed.
When you hear the opening track Something from Nothing which starts as a mid tempo track and rises rapidly, you realise this is going to be an interesting journey that the band take you on.
The second track The Feast and the Famine hits you square between the eyes, and has that late 90s frenetic Foos sound dripping all over it.
What did I do/God as my Witness is one of those head scratcher type songs that the band come up from time to time, more of a reflective tune Grohl puts some pretty interesting lyrics down on it, but far from it being a gospel tune as the name may suggest, it is done in typical ironic Foo’s style and it works.
The personal standout on the album comes at song eight with the track I am a river. It is a slow burner of a track with its long instrumental intro, but if you stick with it, you are in for a memorable seven minutes of music.
Emotive, yet raw at the same time, it brings back memories of Times Like These on the One by One album. The track builds and builds until it reaches its pivotal moment when you know that you are listening to the boys in top form. It really is a great way to close the album as it leaves you wanting more.
The youtube link is below if you want to make a judgement on the track yourself.
Having gone through the album, you notice a constant switch up, between the harder rock edge tracks, and the mellower tunes that they tend to do so well. They do this on purpose I feel to keep the listening public on their toes, not to assume what is coming next.
There are always risks in legendary bands staying together past their use- by- date, U2 being a recent case in point, but there is no better feeling than listening to one of the bands you grew up with still at their peak.
The difference between this album and their previous two is, where they seemingly just coasted along for the rest of the album after their lead track in Sonic Highways however, they kick along till the very end.
Having not being won over by their previous two albums, I was a bit sceptical of what to expect and stayed away from the early released tracks on purpose, as I wanted to make a judgement on the album as a whole.
It was worth the wait and Dave and the rest of the boys have not let their legion of fans down with this effort.
The next review I post in the next couple of weeks will be the Norwegian electronic act Royskopp’s final album The Understanding.