Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Foo Fighters – Rope

And so modern rock wins the day. Doesn’t happen too often, that…


Martin Skidmore: I’ve never been able to work up any interest in the Foo Fighters. This grunge-lite number won’t change that, chugging along with weak vocals and little sense of the instrumentation and vocal melody belonging together. I don’t see how the world needs more records like this.

Kat Stevens: Like the Strokes, the Foo Fighters haven’t changed their guitar noise at all over their entire career. This overdriven DZHRRRing has grown tiresome, and as Foo Fighters always songs average 4mins+ it often feels like it will Never End. However, recently I have been listening to Absolute Radio which a) always chops off the last minute or so in favour of an Autoglass advert b) is so compressed to fuck that the melody of this riff actually stands out.

Al Shipley: In some ways, this draws on the same template of taut, humorless anthems as previous lead singles like “All My Life” and “The Pretender.” But the more spacious texture and relaxed groove make it breathe in a way that’s far more inviting and listenable, and the butt rock jam section, complete with cowbell-assisted drum solo, makes it feel downright fun.

Anthony Easton: They have permanently and fully become the lost 70s rock and roll band, and not one of those cool ones — sort of like Boston, or Trooper. I find this endearing.

Alfred Soto: With an opening riff appropriated from King Missile, the song has nowhere to go but heaven, but because it’s Dave Grohl’s lads the groove remains earthbound, for both good and bad reasons. “Give me some rope I’m coming, out of my head, into clear” is not the first time Grohl’s confusion of the absurd and vulgar inspired a confused head shake. On the other hand, he produces exactly what he wants. I know a guy who recommends I-Hop. For dinner.

Edward Okulicz: By my reckoning, they put out a stack of good-to-great radio singles off their first three records and then all of one off their last three (“Long Road To Ruin” if you were wondering), so the idea of this being a return to form seems hard to credit, but there’s a fair bit to like about “Rope”. Firstly, the opening riff makes me think that it might turn into “Detachable Penis”. Secondly, rather than being a big dumb rock ‘monster’ striving to be as loud and fast as possible, it’s ramped down the intensity in favour of some melody, dare I say, some colour – shape still missing, mind you.

Jonathan Bogart: 1999’s There Is Nothing Left To Lose was one of the greatest pop albums of the 90s, but Dave’s subsequent forays into increasingly harder, dumber, and (at the nadir) more sensitive rock have done their best to cover it up. Here he attempts Yes-by-way-of-Strokes rhythmic interplay without ever lifting off the ground, or even providing a rhythm you can boogie to. It’s okay, with vague intimations of past greatness, until he starts yelling, and then it just clubs its way to the end.

Chuck Eddy: As Queens Of The Stone Age mimicry by mainstream rock’s most overrated band of recent decades goes, not awful. The melody is forgettable, the singing bleh, and it lasts twice too long. But the band manages some propulsion and spring nonetheless, and the instrumental break three-quarters of the way through is almost worth the price of admission.

Josh Langhoff: Like virtually every Foo Fighters hit this is solid, accomplished, memorable, and not compelling at all, despite the presence of one unique sonic element (the opening guitars sound pretty bitchin’ through headphones). Also like virtually every Foo Fighters hit, Grohl’s lyrics sound like he wrote ‘em in two minutes. It’s not just because he commits to such awkward nonsense as “swallow your crown”, but he also misses opportunities. Why oh why didn’t he rhyme “loose” with “noose” during the chorus? It’s the dual nature of The Rope! It’d be perfect for all those Foo-dominated rock formats and their cagey woman issues! Extra point for a noisier-than-usual guitar solo, and because I turn into a hopeless sucker any time people sing in octaves.

Jer Fairall: Tight, hooky and instantly forgettable.

Comments are closed.