Saint Cecilia (EP)

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Saint Cecilia
EP by Foo Fighters
Released Digital download: November 23, 2015
12-inch vinyl: February 19, 2016
Recorded October 1–11, 2015
Studio Hotel Saint Cecilia in Austin, Texas
Genre Rock[1]
Length 18:00
Label RCA
Foo Fighters chronology
Songs from the Laundry Room
(2015)Songs from the Laundry Room2015
Saint Cecilia
Concrete and Gold
(2017)Concrete and Gold2017
12-inch vinyl cover
Foo Fighters Saint Cecilia EP Vinyl cover.jpg
Singles from Saint Cecilia
  1. "Saint Cecilia"
    Released: November 23, 2015

Saint Cecilia is an EP by American rock band Foo Fighters. It was released as a free download on November 23, 2015.[2] Initially intended as a sign of gratitude to the group's fans, the EP was also dedicated to the victims of the terrorist attacks in Paris.[3][4] A single from the EP, "Saint Cecilia", peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs chart in 2016.

Background and recording[edit]

The five song EP was recorded in Austin, Texas, at the Saint Cecilia Hotel during the Austin City Limits festival's two weekends in October 2015.[5][6] The EP was initially envisioned as a "end-of-the-tour" gift to fans to be given away towards the end of the band's Sonic Highways touring cycle.[5] However, the events of the November 2015 Paris Attacks ended up cutting the tour short.[5] The band instead released the EP for free on the internet, on November 23, 2015, in dedication of the Paris attacks.[6] The release, according to frontman Dave Grohl, is meant to "remind us that music is life".[6] The name and release date have significance; Saint Cecilia is the patron saint of music, and November 22 is her respective feast day.

Recorded at the Hotel Saint Cecilia in Austin, Texas, Saint Cecilia was released on November 23. Many of the songs and song parts used in the EP are from unused songs left off past albums.[1] The track "The Neverending Sigh" was originally known under the title "7 Corners".[7]

Krist Novoselic, who had previously played with Grohl in Nirvana described Saint Cecilia as Foo Fighters' "statement on how they are the biggest rock band in the world".[8] Novoselic also said that "Saint Cecilia is more straight-ahead rock that is done really well", and went on to say that "I went to the Foo’s last gig at the Moda Center in Portland and they rocked a packed house. I love the drummer Matt Sorum. However, he is so wrong in his statement about danger and the Foo’s somehow lacking it. First off all, I know about danger in rock. I was the bassist in Flipper — and survived! Look at a band like Queen, who totally rocked. They were way more dandy than danger. Queen knows how to rock a stadium. So do the Foo Fighters and you’ll hear big rock on Saint Cecilia".[8]

The vinyl version of the Saint Cecilia EP was released on February 19, 2016.[9]


Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
Allmusic3.5/5 stars[11]
Consequence of SoundB+[12]
Kerrang!4/5 stars[13]
Punknews3.5/5 stars[16]
Rolling Stone3.5/5 stars[17]
Sputnikmusic3/5 stars[19]

Saint Cecilia received generally positive reviews. In a review of the Saint Cecilia EP, NME stated that "Quite aside from the sad circumstances of its release, if 'Saint Cecilia' is foreshadowing the Foo Fighters' next move, the omens look good.[20] Spin stated that "It's the one consistent blessing of stardom. With Saint Cecilia, the Foos are trying to acknowledge that blessing in the best way possible: being themselves".[21]

Consequence of Sound stated that whereas last year's Sonic Highways album was arguably their weakest effort to date, "Saint Cecilia feels like a new turn, or rather, a much-needed step back. It’s simple, back-to-basics rock 'n' roll that reaches for the heart and not the last fan in the back of the crowd. Revisiting the past, Foo Fighters have always been at their best when they don’t overthink things and just be themselves — it’s why Grohl's 1995 debut will forever be the band's watermark, and why 2011's Wasting Light managed to be such a late-career gem. That's not to say that this EP checks into that upper echelon of Foo Fighters accomplishments, but it’s certainly cut from the same cloth. There’s an energy to these songs that feels very nostalgic".[1]

Pitchfork also said of the other songs on the EP that "Whenever that reputation threatens to stick, Grohl always draws on a Northern Virginia upbringing that put him within driving distance of DC's hardcore scene. "Sean" and "Savior Breath" are punk Foo Fighters, or as punk as they can sound in 2015—infinitely more energetic than anything on Sonic Highways, but only incrementally edgier, Wasting Light without Butch Vig's glossy overlay".[22]

Commercial performance[edit]

The "Saint Cecilia" single marked Foo Fighters' 29th song to reach the Alternative Songs top 20, slotting the Foo Fighters into a tie with the Red Hot Chili Peppers for second-most top 20 entries in the chart's history.[23] Only U2 has more, with 31.[23] "Saint Cecilia" is also the Foo Fighters' twenty-second song to make to the Top 10 on the US Mainstream Rock Tracks chart, in which they are tied with Godsmack for the most Top 10s on that chart since August 1995 when Foo Fighters had their first Top 10 with "This Is a Call".[23] The song ultimately peaked at number 3 on the chart.[24]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Foo Fighters.

1."Saint Cecilia"3:40
3."Savior Breath"3:11
4."Iron Rooster"4:11
5."The Neverending Sigh"4:45
Total length:18:00



Additional musicians

  • Ben Kweller – backing vocals on "Saint Cecilia"
  • John Lousteau – percussion on "Iron Rooster"


  • Kevin Szymanski – recording on tracks 1–3, 5
  • John Ross Silva – second engineering on tracks 1–3,5
  • John Lousteau – recording for "Iron Rooster", mixing assistant
  • James Brown – mixing
  • Emily Lazarmastering
  • Chris Allgood – mastering assistant
  • Xavier Schipani – cover art
  • Sandra Luk – design



  1. ^ a b c Foo Fighters – Saint Cecilia EP Retrieved February 7, 2016.
  2. ^ "Saint Cecilia – EP by Foo Fighters on iTunes". Apple Inc. Retrieved November 27, 2015. 
  3. ^ Brandle, Lars (November 23, 2015). "Foo Fighters Share Free EP to 'Remind Us That Music is Life'". Billboard. Retrieved November 23, 2015. 
  4. ^ Renshaw, David (November 23, 2015). "Foo Fighters dedicate new surprise free 'St Cecilia' EP to victims of Paris attacks". NME. Retrieved November 23, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b c "Foo Fighters Drop Surprise Free EP 'Saint Cecilia'". Retrieved July 8, 2017. 
  6. ^ a b c "Foo Fighters Share Free EP to 'Remind Us That Music is Life'". Retrieved July 8, 2017. 
  7. ^ "Review: Foo Fighters, 'Saint Cecilia'". December 2, 2015. Retrieved July 8, 2017. 
  8. ^ a b Playlist: What is Krist Novoselic listening to? Retrieved February 6, 2016.
  9. ^ Saint Cecilia EP (Vinyl) EP Retrieved February 12, 2016.
  10. ^ "Reviews for Saint Cecelia EP". Metacritic. Retrieved December 29, 2015. 
  11. ^ Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "Foo Fighters: Saint Cecilia". Retrieved 21 August 2017. 
  12. ^ "Foo Fighters – Saint Cecilia EP". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved December 6, 2015. 
  13. ^ "Foo Fighters: Saint Cecilia". Kerrang!. 5 December 2015. p. 50. 
  14. ^ "Foo Fighters – 'St Cecilia'". NME. Retrieved December 6, 2015. 
  15. ^ "Foo Fighters: Saint Cecilia EP". Pitchfork. Retrieved December 6, 2015. 
  16. ^ "Foo Fighters: Saint Cecilia (self released)". Punknews. November 25, 2015. Retrieved 21 August 2017. 
  17. ^ "Foo Fighters's New Album: Saint Cecilia". Rolling Stone. Retrieved December 29, 2015. 
  18. ^ "Review: Foo Fighters' Best Record in Years Is the Tragedy-Stricken 'Saint Cecilia' EP". Spin. Retrieved December 6, 2015. 
  19. ^ "Review: Foo Fighters - Saint Cecilia". Sputnikmusic. November 29, 2015. Retrieved 21 August 2017. 
  20. ^ Foo Fighters – 'St Cecilia' Retrieved February 7, 2016.
  21. ^ Review: Foo Fighters’ Best Record in Years Is the Tragedy-Stricken ‘Saint Cecilia’ EP Retrieved February 7, 2016.
  22. ^ Foo Fighters Saint Cecilia EP Retrieved February 12, 2016.
  23. ^ a b c Five Finger Death Punch No. 1, Foo Fighters Near History on Rock Charts Retrieved January 30, 2016.
  24. ^ "Foo Fighters - Chart history - Billboard". Retrieved July 8, 2017. 
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  27. ^ "Foo Fighters: Saint Cecilia" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved March 25, 2016.
  28. ^ "SAINT CECILIA". Polskie Radio. Retrieved November 14, 2016. 
  29. ^ "Physical Single Top 20". Spanish Charts Portal. Hung Medien. Retrieved April 26, 2016.
  30. ^ "Official Rock & Metal Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved December 11, 2015.
  31. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Hot Rock Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 8, 2015.
  32. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Rock Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved December 8, 2015.
  33. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 8, 2015.
  34. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved December 8, 2015.
  35. ^ " – Foo Fighters – Saint Cecilia EP" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved March 2, 2016.
  36. ^ " – Foo Fighters – Saint Cecilia EP" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved February 27, 2016.
  37. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 27, 2016.
  38. ^ "Foo Fighters | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart. Retrieved February 27, 2016.
  39. ^ Official Vinyl Albums Chart Top 40 – 26 February 2016 – 3 March 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2016.
  40. ^ Official Physical Albums Chart Top 100 – 26 February 2016 – 3 March 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2016.
  41. ^ Official Album Sales Chart Top 100 – 26 February 2016 – 3 March 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2016.
  42. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
  43. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
  44. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Hard Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
  45. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Alternative Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
  46. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Tastemaker Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  47. ^ Foo Fighters – Album Sales Chart history. Retrieved March 1, 2016.
  48. ^ Billboard – Vinyl Albums. Retrieved March 1, 2016.


External links[edit]