How to move higher up the bar, after you've done the most important rock bands of the last 25 years and then you have put up another that fills stadiums, has credibility to spare and never misses a move? Make a record like "Sonic highways".
Nearly you imagine, the band meeting in which the Foo Fighterssi are sitting at a table to decide what to do for their 20-year career and for their eighth album. Grohl says that "we do a hard experimental? So no one can say anything "(blank faces of the other members). "Reincidiamo our first album?". "Dave, but you're stupid?" (This really happened). "There are: the thing I enjoyed the most in recent years is" Sound City ". Why do not we turn this disc in a documentary? But not on a recording studio, all about America. "
And so it went eight songs, each recorded in a different city, each influenced by the musical history of the city, each with a musical guest of the cities, each the subject of an episode of a documentary directed by Dave Grohl, aired in america on HBO (in Italy will go on Sky Arts as of 12 November).
Once, when it was fashionable "post-modern", it said it was the era in which there were not the great stories, great stories that can explain the world. The post-modern is out of fashion and is back to tell in great. With "Sonic highways" the Foo Fighters have set up a huge story, he wants ripercorrrere the history of American music, in one place, a "Sound City" which includes all cities sound like on the cover of the disc, which brings together all symbols metropolitan in a collage in which the center stands the 8 / symbol of infinity. Ambitious, yes. The bar is there, higher. But the Foo Fighters the jump nimbly, and with style.
Because the base of all there are the songs. It is not a soundtrack, maybe not even a concept album. It 'a collection of good songs, paying homage to the roots of the music, however, in a not too obvious: the links between places and songs are certainly not didactic.
The Foo Fighters are able to be both ambitious and humble, without being presumptuous putting himself to the level of their heroes - which could easily do, because many of the groups mentioned in the documentary and it involved the project are seemingly "minor".
Eventually, in these eight songs, the Foo Fighters sound like themselves and just: "Congregation" is power pop of the best kind, "The feast and the famine" is perfect for the granitic rock to jam an arena or a stadium . Then, of course, playing with sound references (the jam Californian "Outside", the horns of "In the clear", they do play the FF as the last E Street Band). And they play well with the song form, affording deviations from classical structure (the ride "Something from nothing", the final suite of "Subterranean" and "I am a river"). But the general feeling is that always have fun, not intellettualizzino ever, and always have in mind the goal: to entertain themselves, ok, but above the listener.
"Sonic highways" is a big, ambitious story, we said. But also the musical tale largest deflates, if there are no songs.