Album: Foo Fighters: In Your Honor
Street Date: June 14, 2005
Reviewed by: Renda
There is a lot to say about Foo Fighters new double disc set "In Your Honor". First, the Foo have copy protected their album against piracy, and certainly that is the artist's prerogative. However, this bars anyone who buys the CD from importing the music into mp3 format onto their hardrive, or even playing it back on a computer (there is serious distortion) without installing the software included on the disc. I have read on various web forums that the software is causing a lot of problems on people's systems, and therefore I have made the decision personally not to install it. This is a serious problem for people who use their computer as their primary source of media, and particularly to users of portable mp3 players such as an iPod.
Secondly, as a two disc set the Foo Fighters have put out one harder disc, and one slower disc. This was a bad idea. The Foo Fighters can write a good slower ballad, but all of their slower paced songs sound the same leaving the listener with an extremely long monotonous disc (with the exception of a few songs).
The bottom line is this: The first disc is nearly faultless, and is a must have CD. The second disc is a bonus cure for insomnia. Despite the restrictions with the use of the music it is a great album and the Foo Fighters show us that they can still rock, well at least on the one disc.
1. In Your Honor - There is no denying that this song is a rock song. In every sense of the word, it rocks. Dave Grohl gives his all on vocals, and the music definitely shows talent. My one complaint is the feeling that the song is building up to something that it never achieves. Although the buildup sets the tone for the album nicely, as a stand alone song it drags.
2. No Way Back - This is a perfect song. The music and vocals work extremely well together, and you can not help but start singing along and bouncing a bit in your seat. The passion with the execution of the vocals leaves the listener screaming out the lyrics with all the passion and drive as in the song.
3. Best of You - When I heard this song on the radio before I got the album, I have to admit I wasn't overly impressed. However, within the framework of the CD it works well. Although, not the hardest song on the CD it has a fast paced beat that drives the song, and it is definitely the best song to sandwich between the catchy "No Way Back" and "DOA".
4. DOA - From the first time I heard this song I was hooked. Usually to like a song I have to hear it several times, but I loved this song from the first listen. The vocals blend perfectly with the hard guitar rifts. Undoubtedly one of the hardest songs on the album, and definitely one of the best. I have no idea what the song is about, but it reminds me of something from a Wes Craven movie as Grohl screams "It's a shame we have to die my dear; no one's getting out of here alive". I would have a better idea about the meaning of the song if the band had decided to include lyrics inside the CD case, but instead we get pages and pages of random pictures. Despite the missing lyrics this is another faultless song on the CD.
5. Hell - Although this is a great song it is lacking something to draw the listener in, and doesn't leave a lasting impression. I often have found myself thinking that "The Last Song" follows "DOA" and then realizing that "Hell" was actually in there.
6. The Last Song - I've mentioned that a few songs on this CD are perfect, and this is yet another one. This song has it all lyrically and instrumentally. Nothing about this song could or should be changed. And I cannot stop singing along with this song!
7. Free Me - This song starts out a lot slower than a lot of the other songs on the CD, but quickly builds up into another great rock song. Although all the songs on this CD are rock songs and showcase Grohl's deep screaming voice you definitely will not hear the complaint of "all these songs sound the same!" The diversity of the songs showcases the band's talent while still providing hit after hit.
8. Resolve - "Resolve" sounds a lot like other Foo Fighter radio hits, and I would expect that this song will be sent over the radio waves as a single at some point. It is not as heavy as many of the other songs on the CD, but still has a rock edge to it.
9. The Deepest Blues are Black - I believe that it was a choice in production to have the hardest songs at the beginning of the CD and work the slower songs into the end of the CD so that it flowed into disc two seamlessly. This song picks up during the chorus, but still remains a lot more tame than the songs at the beginning of the album. It is a very easy to listen to rock song, but just doesn't have the edge of some of the other songs on the record.
10. End over End - I love the vocals at the beginning of this song. It begins with a simple guitar rift and just Grohl's voice for the first bit of the song, and it sends shivers up my spine. The vocals lead into a memorable and solid song. I'd have to say that this is yet another perfect song, and although it had the potential to become repetitive it stays fresh.
1. Still - As I popped in the second disc I realized that I was in for quite a change from the first. "Still" begins the slower disc of the album with a low and rhythmic song. There is nothing remarkable about this song, but that is one of the things that really works for it.
2. What if I do? - This song doesn't really pick up the pace from "Still", but does a great job at showcasing Grohl's voice. The song is very melodic and easy to listen to, but unlike their harder songs nothing about it stands out at all. Towards the end of the song the call of "Carolina" drones on and on.
3. Miracle - "Miracle" is finally something a little different with being slightly more upbeat, but I have to say it again: There's nothing remarkable about this song. The lyrics are not moving, the vocals are not horrible but nothing spectacular, and the instrumental work is so simple that it is almost insulting.
4. Another Round - A slight country sound moves this song as Dave Grohl tries to croon out yet another ballad. This song with its constant drone sounds like something my father would listen to as he mowed the lawn, and even included is the lonely harmonica.
5. Friend of a Friend - If the Foo Fighters had decided to include one droning ballad on their CD it probably would have worked, but an entire second disc of songs that drone and mumbles on and on and it is more than anyone should be forced to take. This is yet another song that sounds exactly like the four before it.
6. Over and Out - Simple but interesting guitar notes redeem this song, and the fact that it picks up a bit in the middle makes it one of the most outstanding songs on the second disc. It breaks out of the same monotonous sound of the first five songs, and actually creates a beautiful song.
7. On the Mend - Sadly after "Over and Out's" triumph over the drone of the rest of the CD "On the Mend" jumps right back on the lullaby train. Another song designed to put you to sleep with its tedious and droning sound. On the upside there is some really beautiful guitar work at the end of the song.
8. Virginia Moon - The beat of this song reminds me of a lounge act, however it is nice break from the rest of the disc. This is a duet with Norah Jones, and I have to say she is one of the best things about the song. Jones and Grohl's voices compliment each other quite well and Jones' Mandolin playing adds a little something to the song.
9. Cold Day in the Sun - A definite surprise after nearly an entire disc of dull songs. This song has a good beat to it, and is catchy and well written.
10. Razor - Fast paced acoustic guitar begins this song and adds a unique touch to the sound. It's too bad that this song did not show up sooner on the disc with it's excellent vocals and amazing instrumental work it is by far one of the best on this disc. The song continues on with just the vocals and acoustic guitar for the duration of the song until nearly the end when more instruments join the fray.
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