During the filming of the video for “Best of You,” Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl told MTV’s “Making the Video” that he hoped that his band would be remembered primarily for In Your Honor, the double album that spawned “Best of You” that was released on this day in 2005. Though it ended up being the band’s second-best-selling album (just a bit behind their sophomore LP The Colour and the Shape), In Your Honor certainly stands as the band’s magnum opus.
The tracks on In Your Honor are divided up thematically across the two discs. The first features some of the heaviest and most anthemic electric tracks in the band’s career, including the balls-to-the-wall thumper that is the title track and the blistering “DOA.” The second disc takes a different approach for the group, as it is constructed of songs that are almost entirely acoustic. Left without the crutch of effects pedals or powerful bellowing, the songs on the second half of In Your Honor drive home two facts that might have been previously obscured: That Grohl is an impeccable songwriter and that his voice contains all sorts of beautiful nuances that perfectly served the quieter material. Songs like “Miracle” and “What If I Do?” are among the best constructed and most gorgeous in the Foo Fighters’ career, and it also gave Grohl the opportunity to re-record the song “Friend of a Friend,” a tune about living with former Nirvana bandmate Kurt Cobain (the pair shared an apartment for a brief time in 1990 just prior to the recording of the band’s breakout smash Nevermind). The track originally appeared on a cassette-only album called Pocketwatch that Grohl released under the name Late! back in 1992 (and served as a something of a dry run for the first Foo Fighters album, which Grohl recorded almost entirely on his own).
In Your Honor spawned a number of big hits for Foo Fighters and resulted in an epic worldwide tour. Though it wasn’t as big a hit as “Best of You” or “DOA,” “Resolve” is perhaps the strongest song on the entire record. Since it was partially inspired by the John Kerry presidential campaign in 2004 (as was a lot of the album), it was only appropriate that it was the tune that the band played when they guest-starred on an episode of “The West Wing.”