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The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011

Foo Fighters

A review of the album 'There is Nothing Left to Lose'

After the demise of Nirvana in 1993, drummer Dave Grohl was supposed to disappear into the sunset and count the royalties - save for the odd appearance at a Hollywood Premiere, or guest slot at a Pearl Jam concert, of course.

Foo Fighters - There is Nothing Left to LoseInstead, he went straight back to work creating Foo Fighters - a brilliant, sparse set of recordings that Cobain himself might never have imagined. A band was assembled soon after and the Foos hit the festival circuit, culminating in 'The Colour and the Shape', less inventive than the debut but maintaining a solid sound and a few anthems ('Everlong', 'My Hero') to boot.

So the third long-player might well be titled 'There is Nothing Left to Prove'. With the departure of guitarists Pat Smear and Franz Stahl, what's left seems to be a hobby - remaking various parts of recordings by the Cars, the Police and Nirvana.

Not that there is a lack of quality here, by any means. FM-friendly, verse-chorus-verse pop is almost perfected by tracks like "Learn to Fly" and "Live-in Skin", and air-guitarists everywhere will find riches in "Stacked Actors" and "Breakout".

The most interesting areas, however, are on "Aurora" and "Headwires" - Grohl taking his time, adding a few layers, creating something more easily remembered a few days after the first listen.

Still, it's hard to escape the suspicion that the man plans to live out his days making an easy living from FM Radio and Stadium Rawk. A loud Tom Petty, if you will. This is not such a bad thing in itself - hey, he's a million times better than Hootie - but having seen what he's capable of, it's a pity he doesn't try to push the envelope a little more often.

Ian Stalvies