By Brian Ives
The Foo Fighters just released a new, free, EP, but that may be the last that fans hear from the band for quite a while.
For about a month, Foo Fighters fans have been waiting for countdown clock that the band posted on their website to hit 00:00:00:00. Which happened last night, revealing a new, free, EP from the band, called St Cecilia. And a long note from frontman Dave Grohl, effectively announcing the band’s hiatus.
The note began with a forward: Grohl explained that he’d originally written the message weeks ago, but wanted to add that, in the wake of the Paris attacks, “Now, there is a new, hopeful intention that, even in the smallest way, perhaps these songs can bring a little light into this sometimes dark world. To remind us that music is life, and that hope and healing go hand in hand with song. That much can never be taken away. To all who were affected by the atrocities in Paris, loved ones and friends, our hearts go out to you and your families. We will return and celebrate life and love with you once again someday with our music. As it should be done.” Grohl is close friends and sometimes bandmates with Eagles of Death Metal‘s drummer Josh Homme, and made a cameo in their “I Want You So Hard” video.
The note, as originally written on November 8, detailed the evolution of the Sonic Highways project, which he said began on the last day of the “Sound City Players” tour, which promoted his Sound City documentary.
He wrote about the Sonic Highways tour, saying, “We’ve always been pretty good at knowing when to call it a day. You just….know. You get that feeling that, if you’re not careful, you’ll run out of bread crumbs to find your way home and be lost in the woods forever. It hit me a few months back, crept up on me and tapped me on the shoulder as if to say ‘Hey…don’t spend it all in one place, a——.’ A sobering reminder that all good things must come to an end. Of course…we could keep going. After all, we’d made it this far, right? What’s another 20 years?”
Soon after his revelation, however, the band began recording a new group of songs, not at a legendary studio, but at the St. Cecilia Hotel (“named after the patroness saint of music”), where they stayed when they played the annual Austin City Limits festival.
“Maybe these songs are the breadcrumbs that will help us find our way back when it’s time,” Grohl wrote. “We could use a nice wander through the woods right about now. Another empty journal, another tap on the shoulder…those things are never far behind. It’s what lies ahead in those woods that excites me now…. So tonight, as I sit in my Berlin hotel room on our final tour for this album, counting down the days until we return home, I can’t help but wonder when we will see each other again. Who knows? But, with everything Foo Fighter related, it will only be when it feels right. And that’s a feeling that’s easy to feel.”
It’s worth noting that this is the second time in recent years that Grohl has alluded to an extended Foo Fighters hiatus. At the end of the Wasting Light tour in September of 2012, as the Foos were co-headlining the first Global Citizen’s Festival in New York City, Grohl announced from the stage, “Without making a big deal out of it, we don’t have any shows after this… honestly, I don’t know when we’re gonna do it again.” By the following year, however, Grohl was on the road with the Sound City Players – which included all the other members of the Foo Fighters – in support of the Sound City documentary. And not too long after that, work began on the Sonic Highways documentary series.
For now, however, the St. Cecilia EP is the final word in the Foo Fighters saga. You can download it for free, and read Grohl’s entire letter to fans, here.