It’s been quite a year for legendary rock band Foo Fighters. From travelling around the globe for their Sonic Highways tour to frontman Dave Grohl breaking his leg on stage (but returning to play within an hour, complete with full-leg cast) to the band being seduced by the town of Cesena in Italy to come and play there (1,000 musicians gathered to play the band’s Learn to Fly, to persuade them to which Grohl responded with a warm message in Italian promising to do just that) — Foo Fighters has been in the news for all 2015, for all the right reasons. The last thing the band did was to drop an EP in November, available as a free download, to profess their gratitude to their fans as well as pay tribute to the victims of the Paris terrorist attack. Grohl also included a letter from him to their fans as part of the downloads.
Named after the hotel in Texas it was recorded in, Saint Cecilia, comes with five tracks and clocks in an even 18 minutes. According to Grohl, the album is “a celebration of life and music” and begins with an eponymous track, so needless to say it’s got a beat upper than any induced endorphin, familiar with the Foo Fighter’s frenetic guitar and drums combo. Talking about how “days go by”, there’s nothing regretful about the song , the garage rock sound blasting into your ears with a glee you can’t help grinning along to. Sean could have been any power pop-rock ballad, but for Grohl’s almost glam-strut across his guitar’s fretboard (besides you can’t help but shout along to the one word chorus in Sean).
If the first two tracks are relatively fresh-faced, Savior Breath (should we wince or applaud?), is their dirty, punkish cousin; the one your mom frowns at your hanging out with. Grohl gravels and growls in to the microphone even as he advises you to “save your breath”, or rather, “savior breath”; we’re too busy head-banging along to the song. With a short but tasty little guitar solo in the middle, the song is our favourite in the album.
Iron Rooster, the penultimate song, is slow, slow like the last song by a high-school band, prompting you to hold on tight to your date. This isn’t too much of a stretch, as the last two songs were recorded days after the Paris attacks, where the band was flying a bare two kilometres from where their friends Eagles of Death Metal were playing, and subsequently disturbed by the bloodshed. The Neverending Sigh, while not as slow as its predecessor, is still contemplative; despite a hard rock blast in the middle and at the end. Ultimately, the album is as much a celebration of the band’s last two decades and their sound as much as it is about its fans. Thanks, you guys.
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Foo Fighters, Saint Cecilia (EP), RCA, Free Download