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When nice people make horrible music | the collected Facebook Foo Fighters vitriol

When nice people make horrible music | the collected Facebook Foo Fighters vitriol
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This band certainly attracts a lot of opinions. I asked the question Why do you love/hate Foo Fighters? on Facebook. Many people responded.

Here are some edited highlights.

  • The Don Henley of grunge.
  • Middle-aged men worshipping at the feet of Grohl while he bangs out Sugar rip-off riffs.
  • That’s just piss weak FM radio dribble.
  • The music post-debut album is utter shite. Grohl radiates ‘Chancer’.
  • All their music kind of blends into each other.
  • They are a studio band – cannot cut it live.
  • Fucking positivity.
  • I want them to make an album that sounds like a band in a room, not a shiny piece of over-produced crap.
  • I thought they only had one song…?
  • Too much bombastic, overbaked, reaching for the Top 20, arena rockage pip with mostly crap lyrics… nice guys, though.
  • Lowest common denominator rock. Fast food rock. He should put the guitar and microphone down and go back behind the drums where he belongs.
  • He distilled the essence of power pop, grunge, riff rock, punk-by-numbers and stadium rock, removed all joy from the result and milked that motherfucker for all it was worth.
  • Stinkin’ pile of wet manure, but no worse than Lenny Kravitz.
  • Ripped off Bob Mould’s Sugar riffs.
  • Wouldn’t have made it past a corner pub had it not been for his previous job position and (of course) Pat Smear. I’m just too fucking smart to like them.
  • It’s wanker shite, for Christ’s sake.
  • Poo Blighters . They really are the pits. Worse than ISIS.
  • Like: a few great songs; they put in the charts some nice loud guitars (folks, did you notice that 1993 ended 20+ years ago?); he’s a good guy; sense of humour; true, great inspiration from Bob Mould.
  • Their music is meh, not that bad if you’re into commercial rock. Dave Grohl loses points for his “anybody who doesn’t make music the exact way I make music isn’t making real music” stance.
  • Just mainstream straight up poppy rock. Foos are too sincere and a little smug, not enough humour in the songs. Pretty much everything that punk (and then grunge) was meant to have blown away.
  • His lyrics are just awful and the songs all sound the same. Occasionally, when drunk I sing along. I don’t know how I know the words.
  • Like a lot of 17-year-olds. I bought the first album to fill the void left by Nirvana. The second album was great too, the third album good enough and then it was steadily diminishing returns. Essentially, I’ve been hoping they’d produce something again that will grab me like that first album did. I follow them like a disappointed but loyal Richmond supporter follows their football team year after year.
  • The first record was ok. After that, there aren’t really any songs, and the singing and lyrics generally aren’t very good. The arrangements /sounds are too “rock”.
  • Neither love nor hate, but appreciate. They’ve got hooks, power guitars and make people happy. Save the vitriol for Nickelback – there are a zillion much more tedious rock bands out there.
  • I like the ‘production’ on the first record. It’s way less harsh on the ears than subsequent efforts.
  • The first record had some great tunes on it, and now it’s all testosterone and lame lyrics.
  • He seems like a lovely bloke. I don’t wish him any harm, I just hope to never hear his band ever again.
  • Nice people make horrible music.
  • I used to love the first two albums. I guess I was trying to find some Nirvana ersatz.
  • Because no matter what band I put into Pandora Radio eventually it’ll end up playing me Foo Fighters. They seem to have no loftier ambition than being an alt rock creed despite their pedigree. That Dave will likely be the Bradbury-ian survivor that contextualises the 90s to future generations
  • I really like Dave’s documentary. The last one was spoilt every time by the Foo Fighters and the awful, awful songs Dave wrote.
  • I appreciate and respect Dave and the Foos for their contribution to music. The FF seem to care less about what people think, because they’re too busy having fun playing music, as well as honoring the past. That’s simple honesty. That’s all I ever want to hear in any genre of music.
  • 1st album: great, catchy guitar pop/rock
    2nd album: like the first but with slicker production
    3rd: classic/am rock influences more pronounced, but songs are still mostly really good.
    4th: songs are getting too long, not as many hooks, classic rock influences taking over (in a bad way).
    5th album onwards: 50% dreck, 25% could be decent but too long, 25% somewhat worthwhile but not as good as the first few records.
  • There’s a really annoying moment in the Seattle Sonic Highways episode where Grohl is going through his old pre-Foos demos and acting really embarrassed by them when they’re twice as catchy and interesting as anything he’s done in the last decade or more.
  • I don’t like Dave Grohl’s face. It puts me off.
  • I like the first Foos album. It’s a lovely pop record. Enjoyed the Late! tape. Disliked the second Foos album… and I’ve found everything since to be quite nice to drive to – in a Dad rock way. ‘Love’ and ‘hate’ are far too intense for a band as beige as the Foo Fighters.
  • The beige of rock music.
  • Grohl took the sugary melodies from Kurt but he isn’t weird or original enough to have the same thrilling contrast. The first two LPs were inventive in parts. After ‘Stacked Actors’ it all went to Tom Petty town. There’s not enough ‘fucked up’ to counter the saccharine elements.
  • They have some pretty cool songs but they seem derivative of other artists. For example, ‘Everlong’, my favorite Foos song, feels like he was trying to write a Lou Barlow ‘type’ song. But cheers to him for pulling it off! Also Husker Du a lot, both Grant and Bob.
  • Neither the lyrics nor the music break any boundaries. It is a bit classic rock.
  • I feel like I love Foo Fighters yet find them boring at the same time. They do great videos though.
  • They’re a band I want to like more than actually like, due to who is in the band. I liked the first two albums, and the odd song now and again. But it’s generic stadium rock.
  • A wee bit too macho for my liking.
  • He’s Grant Hart for dummies.
  • In their hearts, it’s still about a love of rock’n’roll, even if it gets a little muddy nowadays. ‘Feast And Famine’ on the last album is awesome.
  • They’d be much better on drugs.
  • Pros – Grohl’s enthusiasm for music & his affability.
    Cons – The songs.
  • Too boring.
  • Don’t love, don’t hate Foo Fighters. Just don’t listen to em cause they sound like approx. 200 other Alternative Rockbands (pretenders) I don’t listen to.
  • Bland college rock. Dave loves himself took much.
  • I appreciate very much the things Dave has said about kids learning to love music through punk rather than through American Idol, but I don’t connect emotionally with the Foo Fighters. For those who do, lovely.
  • I like the first Foo Fighters record. It’s good power-pop. It also served as a balm after Kurt’s death. I don’t know how much truth there is to the idea that Nirvana would have become more democratic had Kurt not died, but those already great songs on the first album woulda sounded amazing with Kurt and Krist on them. The second one was good, but the arena rock was already setting in. It quickly became diminishing returns. As for Dave, I like him more than his music. He is who he is – and there’s an honesty in that sort of person that I admire.
  • All I know is they are one of the ONLY super poppy rock bands that I like.
  • Because drummers who play guitar should NOT be lead singers.EVER. Its defies all Darwinian logic.
  • Sadly I never got the Foo Fighters. I was always going to compare them to Dave’s previous bands (Scream and Dain Bramage) and find them wanting.
  • I’m still waiting on a 2nd Them Crooked Vultures LP.
  • I don’t love or hate Foo Fighters. They’re….ok.
  • I’m a Nirvana fan. I don’t love and I do not hate them. I just like a couple of songs, a Nirvana fan will always like a couple of songs.
  • The first record and Wasting Light are great. Wasting Light is waaaaay underrated, which isn’t easy when you’re playing Wembley.
  • First album great, second album good, the rest shit!!
  • I’m still waiting on a 2nd Late! LP
  • My 14-yr-old connects with them so they are doing something right. I would far rather have them than a whole raft of other ersatz rock acts.
  • Way too generic rock. It’s like air. You can take it in but doesn’t really feel like much.
  • Generic “alternative” rock that is constantly shoved down our throats made by a “nice” guy who used to play in actual punk bands and is now touted by the media as the long hair authority on EVERYTHING.
  • As Wings are to the Beatles. Tries too hard, desperate to be ‘edgy’, riding round on motorbikes – mid-life crisis in musical form. Sound like a North Norfolk Radio playlist. Can honestly picture Dave Grohl and Marilyn Manson in a country pub, wearing lots of supermarket denim, discussing proposed changes to the local Tring road very loudly, while drinking mild and complaining about ‘outsiders’. ‘Electronic musics, coming over here, taking our jobs.’ ‘It’s not even real music Marilyn, it’s all about the valves don’t yew know.’ Grunt grunt.
  • They are a beer commercial.
  • Love them. Especially the first three albums. Pat Smear is my fav guitar player.
  • Love them and hate them. Love them when they just simply go completely “fuck it, we’re just a bloody rock and roll band, let’s rock and roll”, hate them when they just seem to be doing it by the numbers. The latter is fortunately quite rare. What I especially love about them is the way they use gaps in the rhythm.
  • I keep thinking about Phil Collins
  • They lost me after the early years, when there was plenty of catchy left in their back pockets. Love Nate’s playing, Dave can really trip my ear with his touch for a guitar arrangement, also, I appreciate the occasional clever use of Pat Smear, who can practically do no wrong. Saw ’em twice in six months back then. Two of the best shows I’d seen in years at the time.

Taken aback by the outpouring of vitriol my question provoked, I decided I better throw a small kitten in among the pigeons, and phrase the query another way. So I wrote: Been listening to Foo Fighters for almost the first time in – what – 15 years. They’re surprisingly listenable, aren’t they? (Which was true.) Many people took this to be a positive. It isn’t necessarily, but whatever. It had the desired effect. I received 20 ‘likes’ and a smattering of praise for the Foos. In most all conversation about music, I like some balance (otherwise it ain’t much of a dialogue).

  • ‘Big Generator’ is pretty good.
  • FF have always left me cold. they’re the stock vacation photos of rock n roll.
  • I love their old classics but never really ‘followed them’. The Sonic Highways doc I reeeally enjoyed though and made me warm to them more again. Mainly cuz of Grohl’s punk roots and the fact it was awesome seeing the likes of Naked Raygun being mentioned on something that was aimed at the masses. Very clever move indeed. Made us buy the album. Not stuff I would normally listen to but because I can picture each song in my head in the documentary it makes it more fun.
  • Which [album]?
  • (ET): It’s a greatest hits. I have no way of knowing which song is from which album. I do know I like their first album though. I never really liked Grohl’s vocals before but now they remind me of McCartney, Grant Hart, 70s AM rock. Oh…and Teenage Fanclub (the vocals).
  • Early stuff is ok and few other songs here and there are put on the jukebox in the pub, but I don’t own anything by them. Dave seems like a sound guy, but FF need to do a hardcore record like his influences.
  • The best way to experience the Foos is via the music videos.
  • HAS EVERYBODY LOST THEIR MINDS
  • I like the middle eight in ‘This Is A Call’ cause they(he) speed(s) up and sounds quite brutal for 30 seconds. That’s it. 30 seconds in how many years?
  • Hackasaurus Rex.
  • It all sounds too polished and compressed nowadays which sucks the life out of the songs. Perfect for the radio. Their first two albums had a great open sound to them.
  • First two albums were good then they turned in to more filler than killer, which is perfect for a greatest hits…check out Stacked Actors live on YouTube.
  • First album is so so good! The song ‘Big Me’ is prime Evan
  • There’s a joi de vivre about them that most music lacks; they always genuinely sound like they’re having fun. I like that; not same genre but it’s the same way I feel when I hear Ella & Louis recordings.
  • Ear transplant?
  • They sound like what Husker Du would have sounded like if the Warner’s deal had worked, they’d had top forty hits, avoided the drugs, had an A&R man who’d encouraged them to give in to their inner metallers, and had settled domestic relationships. A happy Huskers, if you like. Which isn’t a bad thing at all, but you prob’ly don’t need many records by them.
  • Their third album is a wonderful power pop record.

18 Responses to When nice people make horrible music | the collected Facebook Foo Fighters vitriol

  1. Pingback: How NOT to write about music – 139. Foo Fighters | How NOT to write about music

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