In Your Honor
While he'll always be remembered as the backbone of Nirvana, Dave Grohl has been defined by his solo project-turned-band, Foo Fighters. Many Foo purists felt alienated when the band shifted from post-grunge heroes to mainstream rock kings following two solid albums, but the more marketable sound has netted the band some serious radio hits, four Grammy Awards and exposure to the masses. Enter the fifth recording, the two-disc In Your Honor. Throughout disc one, the band pays homage to its past, updating the harder riffs into a whole new series of songs — “The Last Song” is a direct nod to “Breakout” and probably to Grohl’s object of affection at the time, too. Disc two sees a revival of “Friend of A Friend,” a gem from Grohl’s pre-Foo demo, Pocketwatch. The disc also features guest performances from Norah Jones, Queens of the Stone Age’s Josh Homme, Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones and marks Foo drummer Taylor Hawkins’ return to the microphone on “Cold Day in the Sun.” Grohl has hinted that it’s better to burn out than to fade away, and In Your Honor sounds like a long goodbye. Whether it’s the end, or a new beginning, this much can be said: this is not the Foo Fighters’ best album, but it’s good. It successfully bridges the gap from commercial successes back to the band’s vibrant alternative beginning, offering the best of both worlds.