Sound — 6
As a double album, In Your Honor comes with one rock disc and one acoustic disc. The rock disc opens with an epic distorted guitar, a screaming vocal performance and pounding drums of "In Your Honor" (title track). It would seem that from here Foo Fighters could create something truly epic and and on a higher level than their previous albums. Instead, the album fails to create this. By the second track ("No Way Back") we see that it is the same Foo Fighters music that we have come to recognise and enjoy(the main riff is incredibly similar to the "Times Like These" riff), and while this is a good thing in that it is good enough for a 6.5/10 rating, it does nothing to show that the band has evolved and created an album for the ages, as was promoted. The album progresses to the first single, Best Of You, which clearly is in desperate need of a lower sound in the guitars: it feels as if both guitars are playing 2 octaves higher than they should be, which leaves the track sounding a little hollow. This could have been saved by proper drums on the track, which instead go too hard far too early: by the first chorus we hear Taylor hitting the crash, snare and kick on every beat, which leaves him nowhere to expand on later in the song, and the listener is exhausted by the end of the first chorus. The vocals do the same, screaming from the first second of the track. The track sounds as if the band has taken the "hardest rock we've ever done" perception the wrong way, and decided to make the song continually hard-hitting, without any dynamic or progression. After this, the second single, "DOA," proves to be a good, well written song with a decent main riff and a great riff in the bridge. "Hell" has an excellent riff and does not falter by becoming a commercial 4-minute song, instead thundering through a well written structure and finishing in under 2 minutes. "The Last Song" is a major letdown and is a song that easily could have been left out from the album, along with others, to simply create a great 11-track album. The riff used at the end of the track is cunningly similar to the riff near the end of "Breakout". After this track comes the one of the better songs on the album: "Free Me". This features an alternate timing to the regular 4/4 timing of so many of their others, and includes a very heavy rock riff. From here, the remaining 3 tracks ("Resolve", "The Deepest Blues Are Black" and "End Over End") are dissapointing and simply boring songs which offer nothing thrilling, and if it had not had been from the distortion on the guitars and style of drumming, could all have been on the acoustic album. They fall into the category of "songs that could have been left off the album" along with "The Last Song" as mentioned before. As for the acoustic album, it does have it's highs ("Razor", with it's fantastic fast guitar work) and lows, but is a little too simple at times, and they could take a look at songs like Radiohead's "Street Spirit" to see how to make some truly great acoustic music. Overall, the sound is good, but as mentioned before, it not an album to be remembered. The most impressive tracks are: "In Your Honor", "D. O. A", "Hell", "Free Me", and "Razor."
Lyrics — 6
The lyrics are good, but not great. They fit well with the music and have good melodies, but at times Dave Grohl's screaming sounds like it is straining, and at other times his screaming seems inappropriate for the lyrics and the moment in the song, which can get quite annoying.
Overall Impression — 6
Overall, the album is decent, worth the money if you are a Foo Fighters fan, but not worth a risk if you haven't heard their earlier work. Myself, I wouldn't buy it again if it were lost or stolen. It is simply an album with about 11 great songs on it that could have been put onto one disc, which would have made a truly incredible album (which is what most of the greatest albums are anyway). Instead, they decided to put the B-side s ongs on there as well, call it a double album, and promote it as an epic and revolutionary album. Not the best idea but maybe they will learn from it. It does not compare to any great albums by any means, but is still a decent addition to the Foo Fighters collection.