Sonic Highways

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Sonic Highways
Foo Fighters 8LP Sonic Highways.jpg
Studio album by Foo Fighters
Released November 10, 2014
Recorded September 2013 – July 2014
Studio
Genre
Length 42:03
Label Roswell, RCA
Producer Butch Vig
Foo Fighters chronology
Medium Rare
(2011)Medium Rare2011
Sonic Highways
(2014)
Songs from the Laundry Room
(2015)Songs from the Laundry Room2015
Singles from Sonic Highways
  1. "Something from Nothing"
    Released: October 16, 2014
  2. "The Feast and the Famine"
    Released: October 24, 2014
  3. "Congregation"
    Released: October 31, 2014
  4. "What Did I Do? / God As My Witness"
    Released: November 6, 2014
  5. "Outside"
    Released: August 4, 2015[2]

Sonic Highways is the eighth studio album by the American rock band Foo Fighters. It was produced by Butch Vig and was released on November 10, 2014, on RCA Records.[3] In writing the album's eight songs, singer and guitarist Dave Grohl traveled to eight cities across the United States to conduct interviews with musicians, recording engineers, record producers, and other individuals discussing each city's musical history, which he used as inspiration for the songs' lyrics. The band and Vig then traveled to a different recording location in each city to record the songs.[4] Each track features contributions from one or more musicians with ties to that city's musical history. The process was filmed for a companion television series, Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways, which was broadcast on HBO in the months surrounding the album's release.[5][6]

Background and writing[edit]

Despite initially announcing a break after supporting Wasting Light, Grohl later stated in January 2013 that the band had started writing material for an eighth studio album.[7] On February 20, 2013, at the Brit Awards, Grohl said he was flying back to America the following day to start work on the next album.[8] In an August 2013 interview with XFM, Grohl announced that their next album was slated for a 2014 release, saying:

"Well, I’ll tell you, we have been in our studio writing and in the past few weeks we’ve written an album and we are going to make this album in a way that no-one’s ever done before and we’re pretty excited about it... It’s a little ways off – it’s not ready to happen right now – but I think next year is going to be a really big year for the Foo Fighters, without question."[9]

According to lead guitarist Chris Shiflett, Grohl would finish the lyrics just before recording his vocals, the last part of each song. This time the compositions would drift away from "love letters and confused relationships" to deal with the feelings Grohl had regarding each city during production.[10]

Recording[edit]

On September 6, 2013, lead guitarist Chris Shiflett posted a photo to his Instagram account that indicated 13 songs were being recorded for the album.[11] Keyboardist Rami Jaffee recorded parts for three songs, one of which is entitled "In the Way."[12] Butch Vig, who produced the band's prior album, Wasting Light, confirmed he produced Sonic Highways as well.[13][14] On July 30, 2014, Vig revealed that the band had finished recording and mixing the new album and that it was slated to be released a month after the Sonic Highways TV series.[15] In an August 2014 press release, Grohl spoke about the album, saying: "This album is instantly recognizable as a Foo Fighters record, but there's something deeper and more musical to it. I think that these cities and these people influenced us to stretch out and explore new territory, without losing our ‘sound’."[3]

Packaging[edit]

The album artwork by Stephan Martiniere[16] has a cityscape amalgamating landmarks of every town used for production - Seattle's Space Needle, the Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles - and a recurring motif of the number eight, marking both the Foo Fighters' eighth album and infinity (∞).[3] The vinyl pressings of the album are packaged in nine different covers, depicting each of the eight cities and the "Forever" building shaped like the infinity symbol.[4] Most retailers would not guarantee which cover the purchaser would receive, and album art is "randomly selected" for orders from the band's official website.[17]

Promotion[edit]

On January 16, 2014, a picture was posted to the Foo Fighters Facebook page with several master tapes, some labeled "LP 8".[18] On May 15, 2014, it was announced that the band's eighth album would be released in November 2014 and that the Foo Fighters would commemorate the album and their 20th anniversary with an HBO TV series directed by Dave Grohl entitled Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways.[19] On August 11, 2014, it was announced that the album would be titled Sonic Highways and released on November 10, 2014.[20]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 68/100[21]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3.5/5 stars[22]
The A.V. Club B−[23]
The Daily Telegraph 3/5 stars[24]
Entertainment Weekly B[25]
The Guardian 2/5 stars[26]
NME 7/10[27]
Pitchfork 5.6/10[28]
Q 4/5 stars[29]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[30]
Uncut 8/10[31]

At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 68, based on 31 reviews indicating "generally favorable reviews".[21] Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic says the album "celebrates not the coiled fury of underground rock exploding into the mainstream, the way the '90s-happy Wasting Light did, but rather the classic rock that unites the U.S. from coast to coast."[22] Philip Cosores at Consequence of Sound stated "the album plays out more like a bonus feature, something that can enhance the series’ enjoyment or simply further inform the experience".[1]

Patrick Doyle from Rolling Stone noted that some of the album's songs are among "the band's most ambitious moments yet".[30] Stuart Berman of Pitchfork was more critical of the album, stating "Foo Fighters completely demystify their own creative process, effectively turning the Sonic Highways project into a glorified homework assignment—educational, perhaps, but laboriously procedural."[28]

Commercial performance[edit]

The album debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, with sales of 190,000 copies in the United States.[32] As of September 2015, it has sold 490,000 copies in the US.[33]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Recording location Length
1. "Something from Nothing" (featuring Rick Nielsen) Electrical Audio (Chicago) 4:49
2. "The Feast and the Famine" (featuring Peter Stahl and Skeeter Thompson) Inner Ear Studios (Arlington County, Virginia) 3:50
3. "Congregation" (featuring Zac Brown) Southern Ground Studios (Nashville, Tennessee) 5:12
4. "What Did I Do?/God as My Witness" (featuring Gary Clark, Jr.) Studio 6A (Austin, Texas) 5:44
5. "Outside" (featuring Joe Walsh) Rancho De La Luna (Joshua Tree, California) 5:15
6. "In the Clear" (featuring the Preservation Hall Jazz Band) Preservation Hall (New Orleans) 4:04
7. "Subterranean" (featuring Ben Gibbard) Robert Lang Studios (Seattle) 6:08
8. "I Am a River" (featuring Tony Visconti and Kristeen Young) The Magic Shop (New York City) 7:09
Total length: 42:03

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the album's liner notes.[34]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Singles[edit]

List of singles, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Year Peak chart positions
US
[85]
US
Alt

[86]
US
Main

[87]
US
Rock

[88]
AUS
[89]
AUT
[90]
BEL
[91]
CAN
[92]
FIN
[93]
GER
[94]
JPN
[95]
NLD
[96]
NZ
[97]
PL
[98]
PT
[99]
SCO
[100]
UK
[101]
UK
Rock

[102]
"Something from Nothing" 2014 [A] 1 1 8 53 75 42 63 22 100 63 57 32 18 45 56 73 1
"Congregation" 5 1 21 73 12[B] 97 38 68 4
"Outside" 2015 11 7 39 21[B] 29 10
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.
  • A ^ "Something from Nothing" did not enter the Billboard Hot 100 but peaked on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 singles chart at number 1.[103]
  • B ^ "Congregation" and "Outside" did not chart on the Belgian Ultratop chart but charted on the Belgian Ultratip chart.

Other charted songs[edit]

List of songs, with selected chart positions and certifications
Title Year Peak chart positions
US
Rock

[88]
BEL
[91]
FIN
Air

[104]
PL
[105]
PT
[106]
SCO
[107]
UK
Rock

[108]
"The Feast and the Famine" 2014 37 16[C] 27 93 4
"What Did I Do? / God As My Witness" 37 33 6
"I Am a River" 2015 61 25 15
"In the Clear" 24 11
"Subterranean"" 18
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.
  • C ^ "The Feast and the Famine", did not chart on the Belgian Ultratop chart but charted on the Belgian Ultratip chart.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Cosores, Philip (November 7, 2014). "Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Alternative Future Releases". All Access Music Group. Archived from the original on July 21, 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c Grow, Kory (11 August 2014). "Foo Fighters Name New Album 'Sonic Highways,' Reveal Track List". RollingStone.com. Retrieved 11 August 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Foo Fighters Announce 'Sonic Highways' Track List, Share Artwork billboard.com. Retrieved 11 August 2014.
  5. ^ "Foo Fighters premiere new single "Something From Nothing" — listen". Consequence of Sound. October 16, 2014. Retrieved October 17, 2014. 
  6. ^ Camp, Zoe; Phillips, Amy (October 16, 2014). "Foo Fighters Release "Something From Nothing" From New Album Sonic Highways". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved October 17, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Dave Grohl Says Foo Fighters 'Have A Plan' For Their Next Album". MTV.com. 2013-01-23. Retrieved 2014-04-18. 
  8. ^ "Dave Grohl: 'Foo Fighters to begin work on new album this week' | News". Nme.Com. 2013-02-21. Retrieved 2014-04-18. 
  9. ^ "Foo Fighters Finish Writing New Album". Loudwire.com. 2013-08-19. Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  10. ^ Peixoto, Mariana (2014-09-27). "Guitarrista do Foo Fighters fala sobre novo disco em entrevista exclusiva". Estado de Minas (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2014-10-18. 
  11. ^ Sarah Smith (6 November 2013). "You'll never believe what Foo Fighters take on tour". Faster Louder. Faster Louder Pty Ltd. Retrieved 8 November 2013. 
  12. ^ "Equipment photograph". Distilleryimage7.s3.amazonaws.com. Archived from the original on 2013-11-09. Retrieved 2014-04-18. 
  13. ^ Darren Levin (26 August 2013). "Butch Vig teams up with Foo Fighters for "KILLER new songs"". Faster Louder. Faster Louder Pty Ltd. Retrieved 8 November 2013. 
  14. ^ Rosen, Craig. "The 10 Most Anticipated Albums of 2014". Yahoo. Retrieved 2013-12-29. 
  15. ^ Stolman, Elissa (July 30, 2014). "Foo Fighters Finish Eighth Album". spin.com. Spin. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  16. ^ Murray, Nick (2014-11-19). "Meet the Mind Behind Foo Fighters' Trippy 'Sonic Highways' Album Cover". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2016-06-05. 
  17. ^ "'Sonic Highways' vinyl preorder". FooFighters.com. 4 December 2014. Retrieved 5 December 2014. 
  18. ^ "Foo Fighters - Tijdlijnfoto's". Facebook. 2014-01-16. Retrieved 2014-04-18. 
  19. ^ "Foo Fighters To Commemorate Eighth Album & 20th Anniversary With HBO Series Documenting Eight-City Recording Odyssey". FooFighters.com. Archived from the original on 2014-05-24. Retrieved 2014-05-15. 
  20. ^ "Twitter / foofighters: Sonic Highways. Out Worldwide". Twitter. Retrieved 2014-08-12. 
  21. ^ a b "Reviews for Sonic Highways by Foo Fighters". Metacritic. Retrieved December 22, 2014. 
  22. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Sonic Highways – Foo Fighters". AllMusic. Retrieved November 16, 2014. 
  23. ^ Warwick, Kevin (November 11, 2014). "Foo Fighters aim for the moon but come up a bit short on Sonic Highways". The A.V. Club. Retrieved November 12, 2014. 
  24. ^ Brown, Helen (November 8, 2014). "Foo Fighters, Sonic Highways, review: 'the same chunky chords'". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  25. ^ Ryan, Kyle (November 7, 2014). "Sonic Highways". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  26. ^ Jonze, Tim (November 7, 2014). "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways review – a high-concept tour with middling music". The Guardian. Retrieved November 8, 2014. 
  27. ^ Nicolson, Barry (November 5, 2014). "Foo Fighters – 'Sonic Highways'". NME. Archived from the original on November 5, 2014. Retrieved November 9, 2014. 
  28. ^ a b Berman, Stuart (November 10, 2014). "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways". Pitchfork. Retrieved November 10, 2014. 
  29. ^ "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways". Q (341): 117. December 2014. 
  30. ^ a b Doyle, Patrick (November 11, 2014). "Sonic Highways". Rolling Stone. Retrieved November 12, 2014. 
  31. ^ "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways". Uncut (211): 77. December 2014. 
  32. ^ "Taylor Swift's '1989' No. 1 for Third Week on Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved 20 November 2014. 
  33. ^ Brown, Matt (September 23, 2015). "Metal By Numbers 9/23: Slayer falls under the horizon". Metal Insider. Retrieved September 28, 2015. 
  34. ^ Sonic Highways (CD liner notes). Foo Fighters. New York City: RCA Records. 2014. 88843-09008-2. 
  35. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 15, 2014.
  36. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved November 19, 2014.
  37. ^ "Ultratop.be – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  38. ^ "Ultratop.be – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  39. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  40. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 23, 2014.
  41. ^ "Foo Fighters: Sonic Highways" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved November 18, 2014.
  42. ^ "Lescharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  43. ^ "Foo Fighters Longplay". Retrieved May 25, 2015. 
  44. ^ "Official IFPI Charts - Top-75 Albums Sales Chart - Εβδομάδα: 47/2014" (in Greek). IFPI Greece. Archived from the original on December 1, 2014. Retrieved December 1, 2014. 
  45. ^ "Top 40 album DVD és válogatáslemez-lista – 2014. 46. hét" (in Hungarian). MAHASZ. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  46. ^ "GFK Chart-Track Albums: Week 46, 2014". Chart-Track. IRMA. Retrieved November 17, 2014.
  47. ^ "Artisti - Classifica settimanale WK 46 (dal 10-11-2014 al 16-11-2014)" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Archived from the original on November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 20, 2014. 
  48. ^ "Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". oricn ME inc. Retrieved May 25, 2015. 
  49. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved November 14, 2014.
  50. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 14, 2014.
  51. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 22, 2014.
  52. ^ "Oficjalna lista sprzedaży :: OLiS - Official Retail Sales Chart". OLiS. Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved November 22, 2014.
  53. ^ "Portuguesecharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  54. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 16, 2016.
  55. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 14, 2014.
  56. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Hung Medien. Retrieved November 19, 2014.
  57. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 17, 2014.
  58. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  59. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Alternative Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  60. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Hard Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  61. ^ "Foo Fighters Chart History (Top Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved November 20, 2014.
  62. ^ "End of Year Charts – ARIA Top 100 Albums 2014". ARIA Charts. Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved January 7, 2015. 
  63. ^ JAAROVERZICHTEN 2014 ultratop.be. Retrieved January 1, 2015.
  64. ^ "FIMI - Classifiche Annuali 2014 "TOP OF THE MUSIC" FIMI-GfK: un anno di musica italiana" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Archived from the original on 13 January 2015. Retrieved 14 January 2015. 
  65. ^ "Top Selling Albums of 2014". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved January 2, 2015. 
  66. ^ Official Top 40 Biggest Selling Albums of 2014 Archived 2015-01-01 at the Wayback Machine. official charts.com. Retrieved 2 January 2014.
  67. ^ Top Billboard 200 Albums - Year End billboard.com. Retrieved February 1, 2015.
  68. ^ "Alternative Albums: 2014 Year-End Charts". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 16, 2015. (subscription required)
  69. ^ "2014 Year End Charts - Hard Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  70. ^ "2014 Year End Charts - Top Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 9, 2014. 
  71. ^ "ARIA Charts - End of Year Charts - Top 100 Albums 2015". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved January 6, 2016. 
  72. ^ Top Billboard 200 Albums - Year End billboard.com. Retrieved December 31, 2015.
  73. ^ "2015 Year End Charts - Hard Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 31, 2015. 
  74. ^ "2015 Year End Charts - Top Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 31, 2015. 
  75. ^ "2015 Year End Charts - Soundtracks". Billboard. Retrieved December 31, 2015. 
  76. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2014 Albums". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved December 13, 2014. 
  77. ^ "Austrian album certifications – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in German). IFPI Austria. Retrieved September 22, 2015.  Enter Foo Fighters in the field Interpret. Enter Sonic Highways in the field Titel. Select album in the field Format. Click Suchen
  78. ^ "Gold/Platinum". Music Canada. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  79. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Foo Fighters; 'Sonic Highways')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  80. ^ "Italian album certifications – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved February 2, 2017. 
  81. ^ "New Zealand album certifications – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved February 10, 2015. 
  82. ^ "British album certifications – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved November 14, 2014.  Select albums in the Format field. Select Platinum in the Certification field. Enter Sonic Highways in the search field and then press Enter.
  83. ^ Garner, George (July 17, 2017). "The Big Interview: Foo Fighters". Music Week. Intent Media. Retrieved August 10, 2017. (Subscription required (help)). 
  84. ^ "American album certifications – Foo Fighters – Sonic Highways". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH
  85. ^ "Foo Fighters Album & Song Chart History – Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved October 26, 2010. 
  86. ^ "Foo Fighters Album & Song Chart History – Alternative Songs". Billboard. Retrieved October 26, 2010. 
  87. ^ Foo Fighters - Mainstream Rock Songs chart history billboard.com. Retrieved November 9, 2014.
  88. ^ a b "Foo Fighters Album & Song Chart History – Rock Songs". Billboard. Retrieved October 26, 2010. 
  89. ^
  90. ^ "Discographie Foo Fighters" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 2014-11-15. 
  91. ^ a b Discography Foo Fighters". Ultratop Belgian Charts. Retrieved 2014-11-15.
  92. ^ "Foo Fighters - Billboard Canadian Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved June 21, 2012. 
  93. ^ Suomen virallinen lista (Finland's official list) - Latauslista (download list) - Foo Fighters - Something from Nothing ifpi.fi. Retrieved March 6, 2016.
  94. ^ "Foo Fighters Single" (in German). PHONONET GmbH. Retrieved 2015-05-25. 
  95. ^ Billboard. "Foo Fighters Chart History - Japan Hot 100". foo fighters. Retrieved 15 November 2014. 
  96. ^ "Discografie Foo Fighters" (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved February 14, 2008. 
  97. ^ "Discography Foo Fighters". New Zealand charts online. Retrieved February 14, 2008. 
  98. ^
  99. ^
  100. ^
  101. ^
  102. ^
  103. ^ Foo Fighters - Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart history billboard.com. Retrieved November 10, 2014.
  104. ^ Suomen virallinen lista - Artistit - Foo Fighters: I Am A River ifpi.fi. Retrieved November 14, 2016.
  105. ^
    • For "I Am a River": I AM A RIVER polskieradio.pl. Retrieved November 14, 2016.
    • For "In the Clear": IN THE CLEAR polskieradio.pl. Retrieved November 14, 2016.
  106. ^
  107. ^
  108. ^