“I wanted it to be the biggest sounding Foo Fighters record ever. To make a gigantic rock record but with Greg Kurstin’s sense of melody and arrangement… Motorhead’s version of Sgt. Pepper… or something like that.”
So speaks Dave Grohl of the mission statement made manifest in Foo Fighters’ ninth epic, the aptly-titled Concrete and Gold, due out September 15 worldwide on Columbia Records and available for pre-order now: http://smarturl.it/FFCG
Concrete and Gold marries some of the most insanely heavy Foo Fighters riffs ever with lush harmonic complexities courtesy of a first time team-up with producer Greg Kurstin (Adele, Sia, Pink). The first taste of which came in the form of anthem of the summer “Run” which was described by The Times as ‘epic’, Music Week as ‘classic’ and Shortlist as ‘the best thing they’ve done in years’.
The unlikely alliance with Greg came about through a bizarre sequence of surprise musical obsessions and chance encounters: Listening to the radio during a drive roughly four years ago, Grohl first heard “Again and Again” by Kurstin’s band The Bird & The Bee—“It blew my mind… it was so much more sophisticated than anything I’d ever heard and I became obsessed.”
Some months later, Grohl would randomly spot and fanboy out over “the guy from The Bird & The Bee!” a/k/a Greg Kurstin. The two became fast friends over common musical loves with Grohl learning that his new favourite band had been on hiatus due to Kurstin’s workload as a producer.
While Foo Fighters recorded and released Sonic Highways, broke some bones and packed stadiums and arenas on one of the top five grossing tours of 2015, and gifted fans with the St. Cecilia EP, “Greg was becoming one of the biggest producers in the world,” Grohl recalls.
With the writing and recording of the next Foo Fighters album on the horizon, Grohl was eager as always to find fresh challenges for the band: “So I think maybe Greg is the guy that we ask to be our producer because he’s never made a heavy rock record before and we’ve never worked with a pop producer.”
Darrel Thorp (Beck, Radiohead) was soon enlisted to mix and engineer. This collective conceived a blueprint of the new record as “Motorhead’s version of Sgt. Pepper… or something like that,” secretly booking into Hollywood’s esteemed EastWest studios to consummate this marriage of extremes… or as Grohl puts it: “Our noise and Greg’s big brain and all of his sophisticated arrangements and composition.”
Months, sounds and stories (more on those soon, promise) and so many guitars later, the 11-Grammy-winning, 25+ million-record-selling, last great American stadium rock band had completed its most ambitious album ever—which naturally begat another insane challenge: How to celebrate music & throw the ultimate “backyard party for 50,000 people”…
What came to Grohl in that vision will become reality October 7 when Foo Fighters’ CAL JAM 17 takes over Glen Helen Regional Park in San Bernardino, CA. In addition to being Foo Fighters’ biggest ever one-day U.S. headline, in the spirit of the original California Jam, this daylong marathon of eating, drinking and rocking features an absolutely unfuckwithable lineup: Queens of the Stone Age, Cage The Elephant, Liam Gallagher, The Kills, Royal Blood, Japandroids, Wolf Alice, Bob Mould, The Struts, Bully, Circa Waves, Babes in Toyland, Adia Victoria, Fireball Ministry, The Obsessed, Pinky Pinky, Starcrawler, White Reaper…
And in addition to 12 hours of rock and roll good times, Cal Jam 17 offers camping, carnival rides, a water park, attractions, a mobile recording studio & so much more. On Friday night, October 6, campers will also experience the world’s best Go-Go band Big Tony & Trouble Funk, an outdoor movie theatre and many other surprises. Camping space is limited, so act fast.
For more information, visit Caljamfest.com
The full track listing for Concrete and Gold is:
3. Make It Right
4. The Sky Is A Neighborhood
5. La Dee Da
6. Dirty Water
8. Happy Ever After (Zero Hour)
9. Sunday Rain
10. The Line
11. Concrete and Gold