Wasting Light review by Foo Fighters

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  • Released: Apr 12, 2011
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.3 (288 votes)
Foo Fighters: Wasting Light

Sound — 8
Dave Grohl knows when he needs a rethink. Foo Fighters had recently entered a phase that could be known as "Autodave" commercially pleasing songs with generic choruses, solos, the lot. For all the enjoyment out of songs such as "No Way Back", "Long Road To Ruin" and "Wheels", there was nothing special or ground-breaking about them, and it certainly wasn't a patch on the band's late 90s output. Thus, "Wasting Light" sees Grohl banish "sleepy ballads" and make a record that's "f--king nasty". With Butch Vig behind the knobs, and Grohl recording the album in his garage with all analogue equipment, "Wasting Light" could be seen as a return to the band's homegrown, lo-fi roots, and it certainly does wear that aesthetic rather proudly. "Rope", the lead single, isn't nearly as accessible as "Best Of You", but still packs a mighty punch, particularly with Pat Smear now reassembled into the pack. The presence of Husker Du/Sugar legend Bob Mould a man for whom Grohl owes a sizeable debt on the rollicking "Dear Rosemary" is as surprising as it is thrilling.

Lyrics — 8
If the return of Vig wasn't enough to wake the Nirvana faithful, Kirst Novoselic's maudlin accordion haunts "I Should Have Known", one of the band's more naked, emotive songs, Grohl's vocals treated in the same way as The Black Keys. It has a certain bluesy stomp, but Grohl's confessional lyrics are added gravitas with the return of the three men behind "Nevermind" dominating the track. "These Days" is the potential second single, and even though the chorus is a chord rehash to the verses of "Times Like These", it's one of Grohl's finest outings, with shimmering verses. "One of these days, the clocks will stop and time won't mean a thing" is one of Grohl's best lyrics, whilst "I should have known I was inside of you" comes across as a haunting tribute to a good friend of Grohl's, who passed away last year. The lyrics deal with luck, good situations, how Grohl got where he did today, and what might have happened if he didn't. There's a lot of emotion on display.

Overall Impression — 8
There are clunky moments as Grohl desperately tries to re-connect to the mid-nineties, particularly "White Limo"'s vocal pastiche of "Weenie Beenie", but this is mere proof Grohl isn't just churning these ones out. As closer "Walk" echoes around the arenas, "Wasting Light" offers songs that don't have the emptiness of one. ESSENTIAL TRACKS: These Days Dear Rosemary I Should Have Known

5 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I love how some people are giving the album shit reviews when at this point in time it's got a 9.3 User's rating. Take your heads out of your asses then give it another listen.
    EpiExplorer wrote: xstatic44 wrote: Sladey wrote: EpiExplorer wrote: Dont trust Foo Fighters when they say they 'recorded it in a garage with analog'. I know for a fact that they use Pro Tools so much that all they do is record say, a snare hit, and use it for the entire album. Same with the guitars and bass. Sounds so robotic and inhuman.. Don't be a douchebag. Unless you analysed the exact waves of each snare hit, you're not in a position to tell us you know this for a fact. Secondly, I believe Dave Grohl a lot more than I believe you. And the fact that his name is EpiExplorer. I'll just go get my squire strat and practice amp real quick and show these lying idiots how to make a REAL album. Big fat phony, that Dave Grohl. Well then both be idiots together, but its true. They might as well have used EZdrummer and you would believe it was real. They've done the pro-tools job on all their recent albums, I've studied the sessions myself at MUSIC COLLEGE where I study MUSIC PRODUCTION, one of my lecturers sent us the pro tools files they used on In Your Honour because he PERSONALLY worked with the band on that album. That album and this album sound exactly the same in terms of production, the guitars are inhumanly precise, the drums are timed far too perfectly and everything fits in together all too well for it to be recorded on the spot by a person. All they did with the instruments was record one chord/note/drum hit and then Copy/paste and arrange.
    The guitars doesn't sound any more precise than any of my live STAGE (I play better live) performances with a click in my ears. I am pretty young too and not nearly as experienced as these guys too. You either discredit the precision that is possible to attain through practice or you yourself are a sloppy player. Am I just missing something???
    I'm excited that he brought in the bass player from Nirvana on some of the tracks! I'm gonna check this album out! Grunge 4 Life!!!!
    Hungry_Hameds wrote: eljono123 wrote: jac254 wrote: Love the album, Analog is always the best way to record An opinion. Listened to an interview w/ Brenden O'Brien.. he thought otherwise and I'd take his opinion over a random UG poster. You'd take his opinion but you cant spell his name? ok then... this album sounds great, therefore the results you can get with analog are great, but equally digital is great as long as there's no auto-tuning!!