Unfortunately, loss is a part of life we can’t avoid. It’s a certainty that feels like cruelty when we aren’t given heads up to brace ourselves for it. With that token, tragedy has also been a mainstay in music. Examples are the late Chris Cornell with Soundgarden/Audioslave and Chester Bennington with Linkin Park. Knowing they are gone brings sadness from two points – revisiting the music they left us is noticeably heavier, and wondering what artistry they still had to give to the world. We could only be so lucky.
For as long as I can remember, the Foo Fighters have been synonymous with the road warriors of rock music. This is why I wasn’t surprised when, after the passing of drummer Taylor Hawkins, the band played two excellent tribute shows in his honor. The band is not exactly one to slow down or rest on their laurels – but death changes everything, especially when it’s somebody so close to your heart.
As much as music can remind us about what we lost, it can also be used as a conduit for healing. With the Foo Fighters' first single, ‘Rescued,’ the first song released since Hawkins’ passing, the big arena feel is as present as ever. Big guitars, a boisterous percussion element, and Dave Grohl’s voice combine to state that the band’s spirit may be hurting – but it’s still here. That’s half of the battle, isn’t it? Much of the victory is showing up for another day.
Much of the song themes are rooted in wanting relief, a surprise that hits you out of nowhere, and the latter half of the song bringing everybody together. It’s one thing to be a light for millions of people – it’s another to call on one another through shared experiences.
While there is a palpable sense of grief, there’s also the trademark energy during the bridge of ‘Rescued’ on the back end. It’s too early to know what Foo Fighters’ upcoming album, But Here We Are, will be. Let’s enjoy that they are still here, ripping and rolling with a purpose.