For years the Foo Fighters have ridden the modern rock seesaw with ease, vacillating between fierce and tender, pissed off and poppy. But this double album messes with the formula; here they don't just separate the chocolate from the peanut butter, they lock them up in solitary confinement. Disc one indulges rockers with a nonstop bar brawl of hoarse screams and fist pumping. It's also pretty dull. For some reason, the band has decided that packing the biggest punch means removing those addictive little hooks that follow Dave Grohl around like legal spats with Courtney Love. The second disc is slightly less monotonous in an entirely different way. Here Grohl hones his acoustic skills and livens up the mood with cameos from the Joneses (Norah and John Paul). His breezy duet with the jazz pop songstress on "Virginia Moon" is particularly refreshing, as its subtle charm washes away all memory of the first half's aggressive false steps.
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