Since the dawn of the millennium, no band has managed to maintain constant success and longevity like Foo Fighters have.
Unlike many of their contemporaries, most of whom either faded into the back pages and footnotes of rock history, or tragically died in their prime, Foo Fighters’ success never seemed fade.
Formed in the ashes of Dave Grohl’s Nirvana career, Foo Fighters are arguably modern rock’s most famous act, after climbing to the top of the pile with their self-titled debut album, released in 1995, and solidifying it with the albums they’ve released since.
So 20 something years, eight albums and a few line-up changes later, Foo Fighters are preparing their ninth album, and have released the first single off the album, ‘Run’.
Prior to listening to this song, I wasn’t expecting much. I found the last Foo Fighters release, Sonic Highways, very average and although as a concept, making a documentary whistling recording in famous studios across the America, may have seemed like a good idea, I found the package as whole far more interesting than solely the music itself, and although, like most rock fans, I thoroughly enjoy Foo Fighters seminal tracks such as ‘Big Me’, ‘Everlong” and ‘Learn to Fly’, I can’t say that I know or like their discography particularly well. Personally I prefer my rock rawer, more lo-fi and scrapy than the reasonably polished and clean sound they usually produce on their albums.
The track starts off soft. As a soft floaty guitar drifts in, Dave Grohl almost whispers ‘Wake up, run for your life with me’, whilst the bass plays a simple root note run, complementing the melody perfectly whilst cutting straight through the mix. And as the kick comes, the tension builds, and the song is lifted from the fog that the early moments of the track created, almost sounding like the kind of build-up that drum and bass and dubstep fans good crazy about.
And as it drops, a much heavier distorted guitar riff rips in , and Dave Grohl unleashes an uncharacteristic screech, taking the song down a much darker road than not only the beginning of the song, but much of Foo Fighters discography as a whole. This riff is complimented by an bombastic, danceable, almost afro-beat sound drum pattern, that wouldn’t be would of place on a King Sunny Ade record.
Apart from the chorus, which sounds like every Foo Fighter chorus ever, rest of the track doesn’t really stray from the heavily distorted riff, drifting into arena rock territories in places.
Although I can’t say I’m hugely fond of this song, I can see why hardcore Foo Fighters fans would love it. As a whole its more of the same from Grohl and his band.
In an industry that’s often seen as a young man’s game, and growing old means bad albums, worst hair and the kind of stage antics that make even the worst of dad dancers cringe in pure disgust, Foo Fighters are proving that there’s an art in growing old gracefully.