Foo Fighters "Something from Nothing"
From Wasting Light to Sonic Highways
The Foo Fighters have released the first song from their new album "Sonic Highways", and it proves Gene Simmons wrong when he declared that rock music is dead.
"Something from Nothing" is track 1 from the new album. The Foo Fighters released the song on YouTube. Radio stations have been playing it regularly as the world prepares for "Sonic Highways".
Sonic Highways will also have it's own TV show on HBO. The album was recorded in different cities across America in different studios. Grohl and friends gained inspiration from the musical histories from each city and also recorded episodic content which will air on HBO. The whole creative process will be aired on TV, and we can enjoy the final sounds on the new album.
"Wasting Light", the last album from the Foo Fighters, was a success. Can Sonic Highways surpass the success of Wasting Light? The hype says yes.
Listen to "Something from Nothing"
Do you like the opening track "Something from Nothing" from "Sonic Highways"?
Looking deeper into the track
I was counting down the minutes until this song was premiered. I have been lucky enough to see the Foo Fighters live twice. I am a huge fan, though I am no musical journalist. I will try to break down the track and what I felt it represented.
I had heard snippets of the track from the Sonic Highways promotional videos. These promotional videos made me believe that Something from Nothing would be a hard rock tour-de-force. I was surprised when I heard the track though.
The song starts ofF humble and slow. Dreary guitar licks and a slow tempo harmonize with Dave Grohl while he opens up the track (and album):
"Give me a flammable light
I'm cold as a match ready to strike
So here I go
Here lies a city on fire
The arsonist choir
Now here I go"
The "here I go" lyric is repeated as the track builds in tempo, with funky bass loops thrown in to introduce verses. Parts of the song are very reminiscent of "Holy Diver" by the legendary Dio (this is hard to ignore, maybe the TV show will explain this when it airs).
Around the 2:30 mark, the song builds into what was expected from the teaser trailer. Here comes the hard rock build up.
Grohl shouts at the height of the crescendo "F**k it all, I came from nothing". It's at this part of the track where you may begin banging your head, smashing the windows and making people bleed as the signature hard rock Foo Fighters shines bright. This will be tremendous at Foo Fighters live shows.
Grohl rounds up the track shouting "I'm something from nothing". This is a quite unique lyric. It made me think of how creative people like to say that art is creating "something from nothing". Is Grohl telling us that he, himself, is a piece of art? Probably not. The humble "nicest man in rock" is probably telling us he had nothing when he began, and now he really is something.
The lyrics seem to tell the story of how Grohl does not look back. It also appears that he is aiming the lyrics at someone in particular. Lyrics such as "You took my word, I took your wine" and "You are my fuse" suggests that Dave Grohl is telling someone that he has now made it as an icon and the Foo Fighters are a force to be reckoned with.
The structure of the track may indicate this too. A slow start with Dave's voice slightly muffled, then building up to a fire. The song gains confidence as it continues until it just explodes into a glorious riff filled powerhouse.
Final thoughts on "Something from Nothing"
This track, in my opinion, is absolutely fantastic. Granted, it caught me off guard at first and might be considered a "grower". The song premiered just yesterday and I can not stop listening to it. The lyrics and feeling of Grohl's new found empowerment are marvelous. Taylor Hawkins does a great job on the drums as always, and bass man Nate Mendel should also be complimented for the amazing bass riffs.
I am sure others have worked on the track outside of the Foo Fighters, and we will learn more about this during the HBO TV series. The TV show, as enlightening as it may be, should not be a basis for what we hear. Put the song on and listen.
It can't be said that "rock and roll is dead". Gene Simmons has been proven wrong by the mighty Foo Fighters. I can't wait to hear the rest of the album if this is just the beginning!
HBO's Sonic Highways
The TV show, premiering on the 17th of October 2014, will give us a deeper insight into the writing and creative process.
From what we know, the TV show will follow the Foo Fighters as they visit cities across America. Each song represents a city and a rock music style based in that respective area. We know that New York, Chicago and Los Angeles will be cities where inspiration was gained. We also know that Dave Grohl will be going back to his Seattle roots which will be interesting.