‘Outside’ by Foo Fighters
From the album Sonic Highways (2014)
I’m going to get this out of the way pretty quickly; you’ve probably seen that this happened at the weekend. For those tooo lazy to click, Dave Grohl falls off stage, breaks his leg, gets it patched up and finishes the Foos’ set sat on a chair with his leg supported by a medic. Incredible, right?
Well yeah, it is, but slightly disconcerting if, like me, you have tickets to see the Foo Fighters at Wembley this weekend and as part of the line up at Glastonbury the following weekend. What is even more annoying is that I have never seen the Foo Fighters live before, yet they have always been on my list of bands that I absolutely *need* to see (an unofficial list that I have had a pretty good stab at completing so far in my lifetime). Oh well, I guess #prayfordave.
Anyway, the song…
In preparation for seeing the band I recently marathoned the Sonic Highways TV series, which is incredible, FYI, and comes highly recommended. The episodes that I knew I would enjoy the most were those filmed in Washington DC, Seattle (disappointingly too little of Sunny Day Real Estate and the Nate Mendel/William Goldsmith, who I’m sure wasn’t actually mentioned, connection for my liking) and Los Angeles. Of course, there was only one studio, outside of Los Angeles, that could have been the location for the latter episode – Rancho de la Luna – and it is in this episode that the writing and recording of ‘Outside’ is featured.
The story of the studio and its late founder, Fred Drake, is told in the song; the studio is seen as a as place to find ‘space between the spaces’ and there is a reference Drake’s horse, Kashmir, on whom he would ride around the Mojave Desert which surrounds the studio. The idea of space is a theme referenced throughout the ‘Outside’ episode of Sonic Highways and Dave Grohl lauds Joe Walsh’s use of space in his guitar work, heard, to incredible effect, during the song’s solo. As with the Chamberlain track a couple of weeks back, there’s an utterly incredible part of this song, the run up into the chorus of ‘there’s a long straight road, out of the cold/and we can leave it all behind’. You need to listen to it to fully appreciate just of spine-tinglingly amazing it is, as I can’t accurately describe it in print.
In closing, I’d really like to see the Foos, so, as I said earlier, #prayfordave.