Foo's Gold

Foo Fighters - The Colour and The Shape
(Roswell Records)
3 1/2 stars (out of 5 stars)

Story by Tony Bonyata

Ex-Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl had his work cut out for him. Ever since singer / songwriter / guitarist Kurt Cobain committed suicide over 3 years ago he left an indelible hole in the rock music world. Nirvana, one of the founding grunge rock acts of the early '90's, influenced a world of would-be garage rock stars with their disaffected lyrics, sludgy productions, distorted guitars,and heavy yet contagious melodies. When band leader Cobain died it seemed inevitable that bassist Chris Novoselic and Grohl would sail into pop obscurity, just as so many backing musicians do when their bands go their separate ways.
But Dave Grohl has beaten the odds of that ever happening by trading in his skins for the lead role as singer / songwriter / guitarist for the extremely popular band Foo Fighters. On their platinum selling 1995 debut release Grohl, who wrote the entire album and played the lion's share of all the instruments, proved he had what it takes to front a major rock act. The album spawned two major hits, "I'll Stick Around" and "Big Me", and garnered critical acclaim worldwide. Selling out shows from Asia to the U. S., Grohl, along with touring bandmembers guitarist Pat Smear, bassist Nate Mendel and drummer William Goldsmith, proved to his audience that he has successfully transformed himself from just being one of the boys in the band to a rock star to be reckoned with.
Although not breaking any major ground on their second release The Colour And The Shape, the Foo Fighters have put forth an album full of hard pop rock with shades of Grohl's former band sprinkled in for good measure.
The album opens with the frail, insecure number "Doll", before blasting into the full-frontal rocker "Monkey Wrench", the first hit off the album. "February Stars" and "Walking After You" finds the Foos mellowing out a bit, while they deliver a juiced-up, folkie sound on the finger-poppin' "See You".
The real treats on The Colour And The Shape, however, are the unforgiving thrash cut "Enough Space" (complete with Grohl screaming out the chorus in a gut-wrenching, Cobain-like style) and the white-knuckle-ride of a song "Everlong", with it's speeding guitars and driving rhythms.
After many years of backing up the seminal band Nirvana without much to say, Dave Grohl seems to be making up for it with a vengeance fronting the Foo Fighters.

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