When I saw that there was new Foo Fighters on the way I could barely contain my excitement, new Biffy Clyro, Royal Blood AND Foo Fighters? All within a few months of each other? YES PLEASE. So, you can bet that when I pressed play on the new single ‘Shame Shame’ I was buzzing.
At first I was completely taken by surprise by the new sound that the Foos have gone for. Rather than the usual thundering wall of sound that we’re all accustomed to, we get ghostly, echoing drums and a spidery, crawling bassline. The song has arrived a little bit late for Halloween but has nevertheless provided quite a spooky atmosphere, completely new ground for Dave Grohl and co. New ground doesn’t mean bad ground however, and I was very open to the new avenue that the Foos were exploring. Dave comes in with his vocals, spaced apart and contributing to the building atmosphere. However, I find myself a little bored with the verse and waiting for the chorus to kick in. BORED. Bored is not an emotion that I would ever associate with Foo Fighters, my favourite band (except maybe for some of the songs off sonic highways but hey ho) and to be quite frank, that’s quite distressing.
Eventually we are hit with the chorus (or pre-chorus, I can’t quite decide as the song is structured quite weirdly) and the Foo start delivering me with what I came for, a more compelling and catchy melody, a wall of sound building up ready to explode into thunderous rock fury… and then it just… doesn’t. The build up shrinks back down leaving me wanting much more, but it’s ok, there’s still a lot more song to go. But unfortunately, the song simply repeats the same process a few more times, building up only to deflate back down, and when the song came to a close I felt unfulfilled, like the song had promised me and epic payoff and never delivered.
Unfortunately, it seems like ‘Shame Shame’ is a bit of a shame shame indeed. I can’t help but feel like the Foos have thrown themselves out of their comfort zone for this single and it shows, I’m all for bands experimenting and trying new sounds, but I’m not quite sold on this one just yet. Nevertheless, a new foo fighters album (titled ‘medicine at midnight’… EPIC) is an absolute godsend and is exactly what the world needs right now, and I will be waiting for it to drop on February 5th with bated breath. While I am not the biggest fan of the direction they took their first single, I am a big fan of the Foo Fighters, and whilst I might complain, innovation and experimentation is a hell of a lot better than stagnation, the future of rock and roll is safe in their hands.
- Jim Pearson