On October 22, 2002, the "One By One" album by "Foo Fighters" was released and there is a big chance that you did not even notice it.
This is the band's fourth album that apart from its two hits, "All My Life" and "Times Like This", is not really known. Let’s face it - even if you are a big fan of the band there is a very good chance that you did not listen to songs from this album unless one or two songs accidentally infiltrated your playlist.
Although this album does not sound unique and is not a masterpiece like the previous three albums, it is an album with a defining moment. During the creation of this album, the band was on the verge of falling apart! Unbelievable that after only three albums, great albums, the band was on the verge of total disintegration!
From the outside, the band seemed to be on top of the world. The album "There Is Nothing Left to Lose" was a resounding success. It gave the band a huge commercial success with two Grammy wins and also a crazy world tour, but inside everything was rotten and was starting to crumble...
It all started in August 2001, towards the end of the previous album's tour, when drummer Taylor Hawkins "suffered" from a heroin overdose and went into a coma for a full two weeks. In later interviews, Dave Grohl said it was a very difficult time in his life when he felt he was losing his best friend. The band stopped the tour, went on a short break and after a slight recovery, they met to work on the new album at Taylor's studio in California.
They took producer Adam Kasper and technician Nick Raskulinecz and began working on what later became known as "Million Dollar Demos". Nothing from what happened there in the studio was positive. The band members often quarreled with each other over every little thing and concentrated more on the production of the songs than on the melody and lyrics. The songs sounded lifeless and completely characterless to everyone. It was also the first time the band members had used "Pro Tools", the famous recording software. In short - nothing good came out of it, including ten demo songs that cost close to a million dollars.
The band's "new" guitarist Chris Shiflett, who was recording with the band for the first time, was overwhelmed. He did not expect such a dismal experience with the big and famous band he had joined recently. Dave said that after three and a half months of work nothing sounded like the band. Nothing sounds right. Since everyone felt like Dave, they decided to shelve the recordings and take a break, especially because their manager, John Silva, also claimed that "no one would want to buy this album".
After six years of restless work, this was the first time the band went on a break! This break took each of the band members in different and distant directions and only reinforced the possibility that this was the beginning of the end.
Dave moved to become a full-time drummer of "Queens of the Stone Age" and went on tour with them. Chris and a friend of his brother and together they worked on the projects "Viva Death" and "Jackson", the bands Hard Rock and Punk Rock. Taylor started playing with the bassist of "Jane's Addiction" and together with Nate Mendel they also played in "Juno", an indie rock band. They all found occupations and concentrated on doing other things, with the band seen far behind. The only one who was really anxious about the situation was Knight. He called Dave anxiously from time to time to find out if he was leaving the band. Although Dave tried to convince Knight that the band was his home and he would never leave it did not really work, until...
In April 2002, the band was scheduled to perform at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, held once a year in Indo, California. The band members did not really want to attend the festival and rehearsals for the show were a natural disaster: friction, quarrels and a lot of frustration came out in rehearsals that were the stamp that was supposed to lock down this thing called "Foo Fighters". But despite what happened in rehearsals they decided to live up to their commitment and perform at the festival.
What has been said and what can we say... There are cases in which events take place that appears on the outside as something normal, completely normal, but they have an essential value in the sequence of events and the writing of reality. It happens both in our lives, the "ordinary", and in the lives of the "stars". This show was supposed to be a disaster or rather the band's last show, The End!
But surprisingly, the performance is the one that ultimately made some sense in them and made them realize how much they love what they do, especially when they do it with each other. Immediately after the show, they decided they had to move on and work on the new album.
To change the feel and atmosphere of the previous recordings, they decided to work in Studio 606, which is located in Dave's home. To complete the change, or refresh if you will, Dave gave Nick, the young technician, the role of producer (who also produced the following album with them: "In Your Honor").
A little story about Nick: Dave had to record a song for the soundtrack of the movie "Godzilla" and when he got to the Sound City studio Nick was there by chance to collect his salary. Since the regular technician was not there, Nick, who happened to be there, offered Dave his services. Dave, who really liked working with Nick, remembered him in the recordings for this album and attached him as a technician for the first recordings (Shengzo). In the second recording, he promoted him and gave him the role of producer.
The recording of the album (in the second round) lasted about four weeks. Dave was present for the first two weeks and then went on a tour with "Queens of the Stone Age". Nick finished the last two weeks with the rest of the band. From the first recordings that took place, and by the way lasted something like four months, only the song "Tired of You" entered the album, in which the legendary guitarist of the Queen Hello band was Brian May
Although the band wanted to create a great rock album, even though critics saw it as one of the band's heaviest albums and despite winning two Grammy Awards in 2003 and 2004, it was one of the band's "lost" albums. Apart from the two popular singles on the album, no other song was a success. The first single, “All My Life,” which aggressively opens the album, generally began as an instrumental track, which the band’s director recognized as a potential hit. Dave did not know at all how to write the lyrics for him, but since everyone thought he would be a hit Dave put in an effort, and indeed the single came in the first place (and also won a Grammy). The second single, "Times Like These", is a song that Dave wrote about the band's break period, the period when he went out "to graze in foreign fields". Dave talks in the song about how he felt missing as if he was not himself because he was away from the band. In 2020 this song became a kind of anthem of the Corona plague.
Beyond that, there are no more significant songs on this album and we hope you do not get angry but that is our opinion. This is indeed a significant album in terms of history and the way the band has gone but not musically.