"The drummer's doing an album."
Danny | South Philly | 01/31/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I recall the hype about the Foo Fighters' 1995 debut album being almost as big as the Smashing Pumpkins' third proper album that same year. Cobain's death was still a current depressing reality as opposed to the morbid nostalgia for twenty/thirty-somethings and the "I wish I was old enough" ruminations of teenagers these days. But, it was a year later and it was time for people to move on, including Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl.
This is an album that pretty much met my expectations. I wasn't expecting a masterpiece nor was I expecting your "typical" sideman solo album; I just wanted a set of solid alt rock tunes and that's pretty much what I got. While Foo Fighters didn't break any new ground, they (or he) filled a particular void for some people who had difficulty coming to terms with the fact that their messiah band just had no way of getting back together. Grohl employs the soft/loud dynamics that made Nirvana such a success and reveals himself to be a pretty decent songwriter, but frankly, the genius Kurt Cobain possessed was, and is, out of reach for him. Foo Fighters' debut is a notch above MOR post-grunge, but it doesn't approach the level of the music that broke through between '91-'94, which remains mainstream rock's true last hurrah.
I know the Nirvana comparisons might be a bit unfair but, hey, that's what everyone was doing fourteen years ago.
Wow. Fourteen years.
This is just a loud, fun album to listen to. Even more impressive is the fact that Grohl pretty much did all this himself (eat your heart out, Trent). While I don't have a problem with polished production, this album retains a raw feel that I think the later albums lack. The Colour And The Shape and There Is Nothing Left To Lose are great and all, but I just prefer this type of sound better. Foo Fighters, as a listening experience, peaked here.