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Foo Fighters - In Your Honor (Cover Artwork)

Foo Fighters

Foo Fighters: In Your HonorIn Your Honor (2005)
Sony Music Entertainment

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: NotoriousGrayDavisNotorious Gray Davis
(others by this writer | submit your own)

In Your Honor, the Foo Fighters' most varied and ambitious effort to date, represents a somewhat mild progression towards that goal. It may very well be their best effort since their milestone effort The Colour And The Shape. Starting from the release of The Colour And The Shape, the Foos have co.
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In Your Honor, the Foo Fighters' most varied and ambitious effort to date, represents a somewhat mild progression towards that goal. It may very well be their best effort since their milestone effort The Colour And The Shape.

Starting from the release of The Colour And The Shape, the Foos have continued to aggresively perfect their blend of power pop by cranking out drum-heavy (as in RFTC drum-heavy) beats that thumped, convulsed, tempered, calmed and sputtered, chord progressions that mixed compulsively catchy and ethereal melodies with edgy heavy riffs, and a vocal range that could turn from falsetto to gravelly, caustic loud screaming (sometimes in the same song). Occasionally, a mild acoustic song brought a momentary respite to it all.

Dave Grohl has indicated that he wanted this double-disc album to be the band's landmark album (A.K.A. 'if you had to pick one album to own by this band...'). To that extent, the Foos have succeeded, illustrating the dramatic musical contrasts between Disc One and Disc Two. But there is not really too much musical progression between One By One and In Your Honor except that these themes are now drawn out and elaborated upon more, and that the quality of the individual songs are not compromised by competing impulses to play loud and not-so-loud, or to scream and croon in the same song. This unfettered development of song craft is the band's real progression and what you hear on this album. Folksy and bluesy acoustic, sugary power pop sensibilities, gutteral throat-wrenching screaming and hard riff action are all represented well on this double album.

Disc One (the loud disc) raises the bar on power pop, lick-drenched, drum-battered histrionics -- at least for the first seven songs. The new noise begins with the song "In Your Honor," a sonic siren call (mildly reminiscent of Slayer's "South Of Heaven") that builds upon a furious drum prattle and intensity, leading into the pulsating, cheerful, percolating "No Way Back." "Best Of You," the album's first single, pounds away as the signature melodramatic rock anthem for the entire album, easily retreading into "Everlong" emotional territory. Dave Grohl's weathered voice and the prodding lead guitar licks further punctuate this distinction. "DOA," the prospective second single, is my personal favorite, an upbeat, catchy burst of a song where the guitar races through and glistens altogether. It's just deliciously cheerful, fast and addictive just as Dave Grohl sings "no one's getting out of here aliiiiiiiive, this tiiiiiiime..." "Hell" both guitar buzzsaws through and bludgeons drumwise, providing the "Enough Space" flavor of the album (in about as much time as "Enough Space"). "The Last Song" treads through heavy usage of the chorus "This is the last song." "Free Me" stabs through the entire song with basically its one or two riffs while essentially dragging the listener into some screaming histrionics towards the end -- not really my bag.

After "Free Me," the rest of Disc One treads into more somber, There Is Nothing Left To Lose territory. "Resolve," listed on the shrinkwrap label as a probable single, plays as a drawn out, reflective, bittersweet ballad, a slower, heartwrenching tune, yet still not deplete of sugary pop hooks. "The Deepest Blues Are Black" drones towards tearjerking as it hits the guitar-flushed chorus from its remorseful light guitar whispers. "End Over End" resuscitates the listener somewhat from these droning themes to close the disc on a slightly more upbeat tone, though still barely ambling and thumping along.

Disc Two (the not-so-loud disc) is the celebrated acoustic fare disc that will either leave you to explore and appreciate another musical dimension that the Foos excel at (i.e. creating some great folky acoustic tunes), or else it will sound like some soundtrack or concept album plucked onto the meaty rock album that might have as much limited appeal as a Dave Matthews Band disc inserted with a System Of A Down album. (And no, the Davis does not dig the DMB.) Obviously, Disc Two is the Foos' critical response to the overwhelmingly positive reception and appreciative airplay for "Everlong" acoustic and "Times Like These" acoustic. (Like those two, ehhh? Well, try a whole disc full of acoustic tunes!) Either way, prepare to delve into the Foo world of folky acoustic tunage!

"Still" barely breaks the silence as a twilight lullaby with Dave whispering along, but it definitely perks up with "What If I Do," and "Miracle," as the folk core of bubbling acoustic guitars and piano starts going and Dave starts a crooning. Given its more consistent pop-driven chorus and heightened production value accented with the use of Petra Haden's violin, "Miracle" is a savory folk song for the Foos. "Another Round" takes a turn for the slow and somber and a hint of the blues with the harmonica and mandolin. Critics perpetually mired in the Nirvana era have paid plenty of attention to "Friend Of A Friend," a low-key acoustic tune that Dave Grohl wrote about the introverted Kurt Cobain. Nirvana mania runs wild on us again as lyrical interpretations will inevitably abound: "he needs a quiet room, with a lock to keep him in" and "he plays an old guitar, with a coin found by the phone..."

"Over And Out" comes in as a low-key plucky acoustic tune, but gradually builds into a anticlimatic dirge while "On The Mend" treads along more as an acoustic soundtrack theme than a song. Still, I cannot deny my overzealous enthusiasm for the moment when the player hits "Virginia Moon," a romantic, calming, bossa nova tune sung as a Dave Grohl and Norah Jones duet. It's just that light Latin, calypso flavor that refreshes my aural palate (kinda like the salsa-flavored middle part before the chorus in "Stacked Actors"). "Cold Day In The Sun," sung by drummer Taylor Hawkins, feels more like an old, classic rock by-the-numbers tune, especially since Taylor's raspy voice comes off and blends in a lot like W. Axl Rose. "Razor" rounds out Disc Two as a speedy guitar plucking and picking romp with guest guitarist Josh Homme from Queens Of The Stone Age.

This is definitely a solid album for the Foo Fighters, a solid rock album for music critics and casual fans, and a refreshing change of pace for the dedicated Foo fan. Still, I feel that the band's true musical progression remains stuck in first or second gear and that it will take another two albums before we all know if this album will truly become the landmark album that Dave Grohl really wanted.

Highly recommended.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
Jawbreaker - Dear YouNOFX - The DeclineFoo Fighters - The Colour and the ShapeThe Lawrence Arms - Apathy and ExhaustionThe Clash - London CallingBouncing Souls - The Gold RecordAlkaline Trio - GoddamnitThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!The Lawrence Arms - The Greatest Story Ever ToldHot Water Music - Caution

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
devianter (November 10, 2010)

foo fighters really ought to be killed and deleted from this site. what a shame

thepunk (May 27, 2007)

I find that foo fighters is a group of marvellous rock'n'roll.
This is a nice group and i adore them !!!

[ sorry if i do errors but i am french = ]

Anonymous (July 27, 2005)

FUCK THE NEW LOWS. This site isnt pitchfork. At least last time i checked it wasnt. I cant wait to see pitchfork's foo fighters review right next to their New Lows review

Anonymous (July 25, 2005)

"All of you little bitches (or in Scott's case, big, fat, tub of lard) need to get laid."

I slept with your mom! Zing!
(Score is for me)

Anonymous (July 25, 2005)

and how exactly does being an ignorant homophobic douchebag alleviate this board of bullshit...?

Anonymous (July 24, 2005)

"Does your pussy still hurt because he left No Use? Get over it, bitch. That was 5 years ago.

Some of the gayest little bitches in the world post here. It's almost as bad as AP.net. This little Chinatown fag, jones the bones (likes to get boned in his ass), BSD, paul, and Scott Heisel all convolute this website with their bullshit. All of you little bitches (or in Scott's case, big, fat, tub of lard) need to get laid."

Jesus christ that was great. The part about the gayest little bitches in the world posting here was so true it made me shit my pants upon reading it. Now I have to change but that's ok. Score's for you brotha.

Anonymous (July 24, 2005)

"Fuck this band and fuck Chris Shifflet.

-Chinatown"

Dude, take a fucking pill. Shiflett rules and you know it. He's a good guy.

"As far as trials and tribulations go, when you look back at all the bands you were in when you were in school, just schlepping about and that, playing gigs and all that, it's not really trials and tribulations. You're so busy loving it, you don't care. You're never sitting there thinking, 'I'm paying my dues, one day I'm going to be in a platinum-selling band.' It's all just part of it, You're just stoked that you're on the road playing gigs." - Chris Shiflett

Anonymous (July 24, 2005)

is it true the cool drummer almost ODed...is that how you spell it...either way...i perfer non-corporate rock assholes like the new lows.

Anchors (July 24, 2005)

I like how he contrasted a 10 dollar word like "convoluted" with a recess insult like "boned in the butt."

High class.

Anonymous (July 24, 2005)

"also, ive never been boned in the butt, but that was a good one. seriously....excellent work. no ones used that one yet. you are mighty clever"

I'd never heard anyone use that before, but that's probably because it's one of the dumbest fucking insults I've ever heard, and most people would be embarassed if they used that as a "serious" insult.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

ok, i don't like this band but i'd rather listen to them than the lawrence arms

stevejonestherealbones (July 23, 2005)

"Some of the gayest little bitches in the world post here. It's almost as bad as AP.net. This little Chinatown fag, jones the bones (likes to get boned in his ass), BSD, paul, and Scott Heisel all convolute this website with their bullshit. All of you little bitches (or in Scott's case, big, fat, tub of lard) need to get laid."

i "get laid" pretty regularly (by real women even!!!!), so whatever problem you have with my posts...sex isnt solving it. any other suggestions?

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

- also, ive never been boned in the butt, but that was a good one. seriously....excellent work. no ones used that one yet. you are mighty clever

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

i don't understand the love for this band, they're bland as shit.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

"Fuck this band and fuck Chris Shifflet.

-Chinatown"

Does your pussy still hurt because he left No Use? Get over it, bitch. That was 5 years ago.

Some of the gayest little bitches in the world post here. It's almost as bad as AP.net. This little Chinatown fag, jones the bones (likes to get boned in his ass), BSD, paul, and Scott Heisel all convolute this website with their bullshit. All of you little bitches (or in Scott's case, big, fat, tub of lard) need to get laid.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

Fuck this band and fuck Chris Shifflet.

-Chinatown

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

S/T and Colour and The Shape = good stuff.
everything since has been mediocre to terrible.

rkl (July 23, 2005)

Foo Fighters - In Your Honor
Posted by Anonymous on 2005-07-23 11:16:21

"I'm more of a fan of Chris' guitar playing but I think their material with Pat was better."

Back when Pat was in the band, Dave wrote and played 99.9 % of the music on the records.

but pat made eggs with darby crash. 'nuff said.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

Somebody mentioned a special unreleased track floating around called "The Sign" being really good...

Interesting...

Well, if you bought your CD from Best Buy, there's some Napster deal that allows you to DL it for free--but signing up for Napster requires credit card info.

I feel conflicted.

The Davis doesn't give out his credit card info like that--the way that I gave Southern California Edison the entire state budgetary surplus back in 2001.

I learned my lesson.

Gray Davis
Special Counsel
Loeb & Loeb

benz (July 23, 2005)

Just as I am with this band, I'm uninterested in the reviews this week. Something better has to have come out!

-benz

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

"I'm more of a fan of Chris' guitar playing but I think their material with Pat was better."

Back when Pat was in the band, Dave wrote and played 99.9 % of the music on the records.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

For those who like the rock album, try and track down "The Sign". It's the vinyl-only bonus track and not only should've made the album, but could easily have been a single. As a vinyl nerd I am pleased to call it my own, for now. I imagine it must be available as a bonus track on an import CD or something...

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

the foo fighters should break up before they do irreparable damage to their career.

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

very disapointing indeed. its been all downhill since nothing left to lose. one by one was a shitty album and this isnt much better. its not as rockin as they promised and the wimpy shit is very wimpy indeed and not too good. after nothing left to lose dave should have quit and focused on tenacious D. that is his best musical contribution...i mean seriously. i love you baby...but all i can think about is....

Anonymous (July 23, 2005)

Their first album is their best.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

This is frat rock. And not even good frat rock. Fucking 3 Doors Down could even write better rock than this.

Banging sorrority girls is cool. Listening to shitty music isn't.

- Starscream

-Strewtho- (July 22, 2005)

Best of You stinks, dust off the first album and give it a spin, it's quality.
Is this better than "There is nothing left to lose"? that really blew.

Psychoos231 (July 22, 2005)

Score is for me posting on this lame release

jbear (July 22, 2005)

"this album sounds like the Bob Seger-type shit you'd hear on a Coors commercial."

have you heard the rest of this CD besides "Best of You"? Because that is the only song you could make any sort of comparision like that...

Way to go, regurgitate someone elses opinion on a cd you've never heard.

Big_Guy (July 22, 2005)

"to me, the foos lost their touch when smear left the band. but thats probably just my punker than thou psyche gnawing away at good taste."

Why DID he leave? I've always wanted to know.

I'm more of a fan of Chris' guitar playing but I think their material with Pat was better.

the_other_scott (July 22, 2005)

"can we still call Dave Grohl the 'grunge ringo'?"

no because dave grohl is a stellar drummer

ringo really wasn't

stevejonestherealbones (July 22, 2005)

seinfeld? why do people keep saying that. i dont see the connection. seinfeld was funny

hmm...i didnt even make fun of foo fighters really. did you really get offended by foo pushovers?

anyway, foo fighters are ok in my book, i dont own any albums, but i dig the stuff i hear from them on the radio.

dude, your whole schtick has been done before, and way better by the guy that wrote this review.

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

- i didnt even know dave did drumming on this album....shows how much you know about me HA!!!

Crookedsuperhero (July 22, 2005)

Cruz Bustamante is lame.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

Jones (spanks) the Bones, did you even read the review or are just pre-disposed to making dumbassed comments?

I bet all you know about the Foo Fighters is that this is a double album and Dave did some drumming, blah, blah...

You had to pick the stupidest, most irrelevant, Seinfeld-ish detail to chime in just to get your comment posted somewhere, as a cry for recognition.

But then again, that is your modus operandi--and it's really fucking wearing thin...

Cruz Bustamante
Lieutenant Governor
State of California

Anchors (July 22, 2005)

Well then Jones you are in for a treat when the Early November release their triple album!

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

"I think Buddyhead said it best ...."

Buddyhead hasn't said anything best in about 3 years.

stevejonestherealbones (July 22, 2005)

foo fighters? ha...more like foo pushovers...hahahahahah

i really hate this trend of putting out two discs at once though. i dont really know why it bugs me, but it does

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo.com

i-type-poorly (July 22, 2005)

I really don't see the point of reviewing this album, but ok. It's really good though, not as good as The Colour & The Shape and There Is Nothing Left To Lose though.

sickboi (July 22, 2005)

I'm shocked that so many of you like that "Best of You" song.

I think Buddyhead said it best when they said this album sounds like the Bob Seger-type shit you'd hear on a Coors commercial.

aubin (July 22, 2005)

One other thing, I think I've listened to the "Best of You" single quite a bit. The power-pop version of "Kiss the Bottle" should have been a mess, but it's done with so much love for the source material that it came out really great.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

Love this record.

Love this band.

-Stewart

SoupIsGoodFood (July 22, 2005)

This band sucks.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

nirvana forever.

aubin (July 22, 2005)

Kind of disappointing; I know it's become a cliche to say this, but instead of making two average discs, they could have resequenced the songs into one good one.

Having all the "rock" on one disc and nothing but acoustic on the second one destroys any sense of dynamics and makes all the songs sound the same. The reason everyone loved The Color and the Shape was because it had a good mixture of both and were sequenced such that the album never felt like a straight line.

That, and "Everlong."

skaboom (July 22, 2005)

Some of these songs reek of b-sides. If they took about 2/3 of disc one and 1/3 of disc two and cut the rest, it would be their best album to date. But as it stands, there is too much skipping tracks for it to be an enjoyable listen, especially on the acoustic disc. The occassional acoustic song can be a nice change of pace, but unless that is your forte, it becomes a bit boring. And why did they cut their "Kiss the Bottle" cover?

ALineInYourBook (July 22, 2005)

Score is for using the word "effort" 3 times in the first 2 sentences. Get a thesaurus.

rkl (July 22, 2005)

to me, the foos lost their touch when smear left the band. but thats probably just my punker than thou psyche gnawing away at good taste.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

The chorus on "The Last Song" sounds ridiculously similar to the chorus of "Your Parents Hardcore" by 7 Seconds. Weird. Anyone agree?

JKyle (July 22, 2005)

Oh, and I just can't get enough of the bit at about 2:21 in "Best of You" where the band does that little "dun-dun-dundun" thing. Oh yeah. Good stuff. ::Cheesy grin and thumbs up::

JKyle (July 22, 2005)

Good review, good album. I really need to listen to the second disc more.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

This band never surprises. And at this point, that's a problem.

OC

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

I love the Foo Fighters, but this is seriously their worst album(s). If these albums were combined into one, it would still be their worst, which should tell you something. No song reaches out and grabs you... and I definitely agree that the album on a whole is boring.

Grohl's s/t album is still their best. Colour and the Shape is a very close 2nd. Then each album gets progressively worse from there.

Disappointing.

threechordsandthetruth (July 22, 2005)

The intro to The Last Song sounds just like the bit before the chorus in Breakout, I keep expecting the chorus to come on for that, haha.

sickboi (July 22, 2005)

You know, I have to agree on the "boring" aspect of this record. Not a single song grabs me, despite Grohl's promise of this being some of their most rocking material.

To quote an old friend of mine:

"I was expecting a punch in the face, instead got a tap on the shoulder."

Crookedsuperhero (July 22, 2005)

"best of you" is such a great great song"

The bit just before the second chorus is amazing.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

I like the foos but I don't like this album. It should have been trimmed down to one disc - that would have made it feel like The Colour And The Shape which I believe is a classic.

theundergroundscene (July 22, 2005)

"best of you" is such a great great song

ghostmonkey (July 22, 2005)

can we still call Dave Grohl the 'grunge ringo'?

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

Most of the songs on the first disc sound the same and the whole album in general is quite boring.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

this album just has nothing at all that sticks out about it to me.
its a snore.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

compared to dead silence, its a good record.

Compared to most records, its only decent. I think it could have been one great disc instead of this what if we get rid of bsides and just put out double albums bullshit.

Except if your j church and you put out one mississippi. Than you still have b-sides and prolific gets lance hahn's drivers licence photo by it in the dictionary.

wyzo

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

'I miss Scott."

Wash your damn mouth out with soap!

the_other_scott (July 22, 2005)

this review is too long, but the foo fighters are legit, and that single's pretty rockin

pwfanatic (July 22, 2005)

i think this album fucking kills. not the hardest shit they have ever done on the first disc, but i never take the word of the band.

Russe11 (July 22, 2005)

I was really looking forward to the "most rocking stuff we've ever done" but only a few songs manage to live up to that hype.

ElVaquero (July 22, 2005)

ggnore. kthxbye.

Anonymous (July 22, 2005)

Good record, good review. Good stuff.

Josh

Dante3000 (July 22, 2005)

I like this album alright. The main problem (and I know it has been said a thousand times) is that I feel the split was done too deliberatly. As if certain songs were altered to make them softer or more rocking as to avoid a grey area on either disc. Still I likes the Foo.
-Dante

Kenjamin (July 22, 2005)

i'm bored with the reviews published this week. I miss Scott.

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