First of all let’s make one thing clear: I hate Nirvana. I always have. Yes, because I’m a metalhead and yes because I think they were responsible (along with record companies) in destroying that 80‘s scene I loved so much. Call it spite or whatever you will, but that’s my opinion. Therefore, everything you’re going to read in here has absolutely no bias regarding Nirvana.
Now that hopefully I got that out of the way, I may start today’s post. And today I’m going to remember when I used to write for a Rock/Metal magazine. Besides interviews and festival coverage, I used to write concert, CDs and DVD reviews. And I’m gonna review a Blu-ray disc today.
Right off the bat, I must say this: Dave Grohl managed to enter the pantheon of immortal Rock Stars with this one. What he did is something so valuable from a historic point of view that even if every record the Foo Fighters release from now on is bad, his place in history is guaranteed. And is definitely not because he was once part of Nirvana.
I must admit, I never really gave the Foo Fighters a fair chance because of the prejudice I felt (and still feel) towards Nirvana, although I thought that “Big Me” video was funny as hell.
However, time went on, I started liking some of their singles, Dave Grohl’s did the Probot project (which was VERY METAL) and in his interviews and attitudes he showed he was a huge fan of bands I love: The Beatles, Rush, Heart, Joan Jett, Led Zeppelin, Kiss, Slayer, Queen, Motörhead and so many others. But I still thought to myself: No way, the guy is former Nirvana’s drummer, I can’t like his band.
Then I started reading about this big project of his (and the band) of recording 8 songs in eight different studios across the USA and making a documentary about each city, telling its musical and cultural history. It sounded like a great idea, until I saw the first episode on HBO. Then I thought: “This is not just a great idea, this is wonderful. I’m definitely buying this video.”
I didn’t need to catch any of the other episodes on TV to know that all of them would be great and so, as soon as I had the chance I bought the Foo Fighters Sonic Highways Blu-Ray.
And you know what? It’s not as wonderful as I thought it was. It’s like a million times better. This is a work of art. This is a masterpiece. I’m actually kind of lost for words to describe how great this is.
The statements from people like Buddy Guy (Chicago), Ian MacKaye (D.C.) Dolly Parton (Nashville), Billy Gibbons (Austin), Joe Walsh (Los Angeles), Allen Toussaint (New Orleans), Chris Cornell (Seattle), Paul Stanley (New York) and president Barrack Obama among plenty of others are sensational and coupled with some historical footage, it makes for a landmark not only in Foo Fighters career, but in music overall. And I might add that the Foo Fighters songs are actually pretty cool as well. Especially because the lyrics are all inspired in the statements given; they are actually rather clever.
In the extras, there are details about the actual recordings which will delight all you recording buffs out there. The total running time is almost ten hours, but you just don’t feel the clock ticking.
I compare this with what Spike Lee did for a capella music with his brilliant “Do it a capella”, almost twenty-five years ago. I remember saying time and again that Spike could do anything after that; and I now extend this courtesy to Dave Grohl as well. Anything bad he might do in the future, he’s forgiven. This is of essential viewing for anyone who loves music: from Grindcore to New Age. Oh, and by the way, I even forgave him for once being the drummer in Nirvana.
Thunder – Wonder Days
Ruby the Hatchet – Valley of the Snake
Blackberry Smoke – Holding all the Roses
Badasses: The Legend of Snake, Foo, Dr.Death and John Madden’s Oakland Raiders – Peter Richmond
Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways (Blu-ray extra disc)
House of Cards – Third Season
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