Tune Talk Battles: Nirvana vs. Foo Fighters

Willie Williams , Staff Writer

This is definitely going to be a tough one for me to fight through. These are two of my favorite alternative rock bands, but I already know which one of these great bands is better than the other. And just to make everyone who loves both of these bands, no matter what, Dave Grohl is going to win in this battle since he was the drummer of Nirvana from 1991 until 1994, and the lead singer and rhythm guitarist for the Foo Fighters ever since 1995.

Both of these bands started out pretty sad to be honest with you. By sad I mean the members that were first recruited were either kicked out of left. In 1987, Nirvana formed with Kurt Cobain on lead guitar and vocals, Krist Novolselic on the bass guitar, Chad Channing was on the drums. Chad brought in his friend that was going to be the rhythm guitarist, Jason Everman. Now here is the really sad part about Jason Everman. Jason actually never officially played with Nirvana on any of the songs on the 1989 “Bleach” album. If you look in the 1992, “Insecticide,” album booklet, there is only a thank you to Everman for paying for everything. By everything I mean the studio equipment. There was that and everything the band needed to make “Bleach.” Everman was actually kicked out of the band before “Bleach” was released because of his aggressive behavior. But at least they gave him credit for buying everything later on in the years. Channing was also kicked out in 1990 after he was pushing to be the song writer and Cobain and Novolselic didn’t like that.

Luckily for Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters, their band started pretty good with Grohl on the lead vocals and lead guitar, Nate Mendel was on the bass, and William Goldsmith was the drummer for the band at the time. But this wouldn’t last for long as Foo Fighters drummer at the time was also kicked out before the album’s release, “The Colour and the Shape.” Goldsmith was on the 1995 album, “Foo Fighters” but that album didn’t really get much view from the public eye. Goldsmith was kicked out of the band for most reasons unknown as the only information I could find was that he was on many drugs and “acted out” often. Goldsmith is only credited on two of the songs on the album, “Doll,” and “Up in Arms” but Goldsmith angrily says that he also played the drumming verses in “My Poor Brain.” There wasn’t an official date that Goldsmith was kicked out of the band until 1997, whenever Taylor Hawkins was credited in the album, “The Colour and the Shape” rather than Goldsmith. Goldsmith is still mad at Grohl to this day, and obviously hasn’t grown up since then because his only comeback to fire at Grohl is calling him a “school bully.” Enough drama though. Judging from these albums, obviously Nirvana’s “Bleach” was better known to the public eye and more popular. Nirvana-1 Foo Fighters-0

Back to Nirvana, their second album would get them a freakishly large amount of success as it seemed nobody really cared about “Bleach,” although that is probably my favorite album by Nirvana. Anyways, “Nevermind” was released in 1991 where Chad Channing was actually credited for playing in the song, “In Bloom,” on this album. “In Bloom,” was first recorded in 1990 which was actually just before Channing was kicked out of Nirvana.

Foo Fighters next album wouldn’t be so well known, “There is Nothing Left to Lose” was what we got. There were a few songs like “Breakout” and “Learn to Fly,” that people loved from the Foo Fighters. That’s about all I got for this one so let’s be honest here. “Nevermind” got platinum awards and is known to be the greatest grunge album of all time. Nirvana-2 Foo Fighters-0

Nirvana didn’t release another official album until 1993, but I won’t skip ahead because there were other albums that they released to keep the fans occupied like “Insecticide.” Yes that’s right, “Insecticide” was not an official album by Nirvana. It was just their B-sides. Nirvana also came out with albums and documentaries about the Nevermind album like, “Before We Ever Minded,” “Smells like Punk Spirit,” and “Rough Tapes. “Rough Tapes,” was actually just the pre-recordings to what would soon to be the huge hits that they would later release.

Foo Fighters waited until 2002 to release “One by One,” which would only have one hit everybody knew, “All My Life.” This album has been told to be the worst Foo Fighters album of all time by many fans and critics, but don’t worry because in 2005 the Foo Fighters came out with an album that would be their anthem, “Best of You.” I specifically remember hearing this song on the radio all the time. I was just too young to care about bands at the time, of course. I’m very disappointed to say the very first band that I ever gotten into was The Black Eyed Peas, and the very first album I every owned “The E.N.D.” Yeah I know, I had issues and didn’t know what music truly was until I found Michael Jackson, Nirvana, Metallica, Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters and so on. Anyways, I know that the Foo Fighters didn’t exactly win over their fans but they honestly deserve to win this round of the battle. I don’t think “One by One” was a bad album. Nirvana-2 Foo Fighters-1

Nirvana just kept on gaining fame and fortune as the next release that they had was “In Utero” which is when they also recruited The Germs’ guitar player, Pat Smear. As I’ve said before, I hate seeing Pat Smear on stage with Nirvana. I honestly just don’t feel like he deserves to be up on stage with Cobain and Novolselic, but I don’t mind seeing him as a Foo Fighter. Anyhow, on this new album in 1993, songs that were featured were “Heart-Shaped Box,” “Pennyroyal Tea,” “All Apologies,” “Dumb,” and the song everybody took the wrong way all because of its title “Rape Me.” I’m pretty sure I’ve explained before but I’ll say it again, “Rape Me” is an anti-rape song, Kurt would mostly write the opposite of what the title actually says, he does this with other songs such as “All Apologies.” In this song he just insults you and then basically sarcastically apologizes for it. Unfortunately this was Nirvana’s final studio album since Kurt Cobain had taken his own life in 1994.

Now for this next Foo Fighters album, honestly it didn’t get them really high up in the charts, but it’s a pretty good album in my opinion with the songs that are in it, but “The Pretender” was featured on this album and this is definitely one of my top three Foo Fighters songs that I love, there’s “Long Road to Ruin,” “Let it Die,” and a few others that not a lot of people know. This album was released in 2008 shortly after “In Your Honor,” which actually had somewhat resembling sounds, not like the old Foo Fighters and whatnot. However, it’s very clear that Nirvana’s final album was almost as big as their 1991 album. Nirvana won this round. Nirvana-3 Foo Figters-1

Now since I ran out of studio albums for Nirvana, the only one of the two that I’ve got left is their legendary “MTV Unplugged” album. Now this album wasn’t actually expected to get much publicity for Nirvana, it was actually rather expected to get a few thousand copies sold but it ended up getting millions sold worldwide and everybody was loving the acoustic side to Nirvana, there were not only original Nirvana songs on that album, but there was, my personal favorite, David Bowie’s “The Man Who Sold The World,” The Meat Puppets, “Plateau” which is now my favorite Meat Puppets song, “Lake of Fire,” and “Oh Me.” This was the last official Nirvana album we got.

Now I’m going to skip some Foo Fighters albums to go to “Wasting Light” because that’s whenever people started to hear from the Foo Fighters yet again, “Bridge Burning” was not only put on the radio on a constant basis, but it was also on the PlayStation 2’s hit “Madden NFL 12,” which may not seem like a big deal, but Madden 12 was what really boosted the PlayStation up in stardom, not only because this was the last Madden game to be put on the PlayStation 2, but because of the awesome songs that were put on this game, Rise Against had “Architects,” Grouplove “Colours,” Five Finger Death Punch “Back for More,” Korn with Skrillex “Get Up!,” Alberta Cross “Money for the Weekend,” and of course Foo Fighters “Bridge Burning.” Anyways. Since Nirvana’s last ever recorded album got them huge fame and is loved worldwide. It’s clear they won this one. Nirvana-4 Foo Fighters-1

Now get ready to be disappointed, first I’m going to warn you to never buy Kurt Cobain’s “Montage of Heck: Home Recordings” because the quality is terrible and the songs aren’t really that good except for two or three of them and there’s about 15 tracks. Anyhow, this was the last album that we got with Kurt or Nirvana’s name on it and it was absolute garbage, the only songs we got that were good were “And I love Her” which is a Beatles cover and I personally love this song, but it’s on a garbage album, “Reverb Experiment” never had him sing, so I liked that one, it was alright, and “Clean Up Before She Comes,” that’s it, there are garbage songs such as “Desire,” “The Yodel Song,” “She Only Lies,” and honestly the rest of the album was just awful, and a waste of money for me but now I’m stuck with it.

Alright, moving on from that mess we got the Foo Fighters new album, “Concrete and Gold,” that they released in 2017. I was really excited about this album whenever it got released and I was really excited to go buy since I had just gotten into the Foo Fighters technically last year all thanks to my Uncle…well, he used to be my uncle. Anyways, I was so excited about the release of this album and I bought it a few months after it was released on September 15th of last year, I think I bought it in December actually, but I have no problem with any of the songs on here except for “La Dee Da,” simply because I’m just not into it, I’ve listened to the entire album already, personally I’ve chosen “The Line,” as my favorite off of this album, but there’s other great songs on here like “Run,” “The Sky is a Neighborhood,” “T-Shirt,” “Dirty Water,” “Arrows,” and “Sunday Rain,” that’s about half the album and those are the songs that I really fell in love with this on this album. That and what’s also great about this album is that there is only one band member that got replace, Dave, Taylor, Pat, and Nate are all still there, but they added in Chris Shiflett back in 1999 as I forgot to mention, but it’s been the same band ever since then, and that’s amazing, Kurt would be very proud of Dave. Foo Fighters win this one. Obviously. Nirvana-4 Foo Fighters-2

Now for the winner of this “battle” as you’ll call it, I’m obviously saying Nirvana, they stayed high on the charts and never moved from their number one spot, not saying Foo Fighters aren’t good enough, Foo Fighters are really really awesome, and will always be great, but Nirvana will never be beaten by anyone in the grunge era, let’s be honest here. Final Score is Nirvana-4 Foo Fighters-2