On March 25th 2022, the world was rocked by the tragic news that Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins had passed away whilst on tour. An integral part of the band who had been there since the beginning, he left his mark on the Rock world with his incredible talent, and after appearing on eight studio albums for Foo Fighters, it was always going to be hard to hear any new Foos without him being a part of it. On their latest album But Here We Are, Foo Fighters bring us comfort as we experience the grieving process together by sharing their pain, and hearing them play almost in a state of pure catharsis as they come to terms with their loss. It is one of their hardest listens to date, but all the more powerful for it.
On the opening track Rescued, a jangly guitar intro gives way to painful howls from band leader Dave Grohl, voicing lyrics plucked directly from the experiences Hawkin’s friends and bandmates went through at the time of his passing. Dynamically, the album ranges from high energy and chaotic drums with Under You, with it’s sorrowful lyrics referencing how the shadow of someone we loved who we’ll never see again can hang over us no matter how much time has passed, to The Glass, which has some of the most haunting lyrics and most beautifully strummed guitar on the album.
The title track has the biggest chorus of the bunch, with epic instrumentals providing the perfect backdrop to the cathartic screaming of Dave Grohl. You can almost track the grieving process of the band throughout every song. For every high-powered track like But Here We Are, there is also songs like Beyond Me, which leads us thematically to the most important stage of grieving for someone we loved: Acceptance.
Finally, we get to the emotional climax of the record: Rest. The warm tones and soft strumming of the guitar are reminiscent of one of Foo Fighter’s most iconic songs Everlong. This song has perhaps the most heartbreaking chorus of the album, with it’s simple lines “Rest, you can rest now” behind repeated in an almost comforting way. After a long album filled with turbulent highs and emotionally heavy lows, Rest feels like a perfect way to close everything out.
Taylor Hawkins was more than simply the drummer of Foo Fighters. He was their friend, bandmate and brother, and was loved by millions all around the world. On But Here We Are we share in the pain of his bandmates, and through the emotions shared you can feel the band perhaps finally reaching some closure over the loss of their brother.