A few days ago I put “All My Life” onto my iPod Nano as, let’s be honest, it’s the one great tune from this album which everyone knows. But One By One isn’t an album I listen to often. It isn’t a bad album – there are great tunes on here apart from the aforementioned “All My Life” (not gonna argue, great tune) – but when you consider what happened in the lead-up to its release:
- Taylor’s drug overdose;
- Grohl leaving to record on Queens Of The Stone Age’s Songs For The Deaf;
- Amidst the apparent strain the band, with Grohl also touring with them;
- (Foos would reunite a year later at Coachella, where all of the pent-up frustration came out)
then it’s understandable why this album just isn’t that good.
My listening to the song “All My Life” made me dig the album and listen to it again. Also, now that I think of it, this was also Chris’s first time in the studio with the band so you can imagine what it was like for him trying to make an impression (musically) whilst all this drama is going on around him. Yeah, just imagine that – it’s got to be an awkward situation, no?
This isn’t a bad album, it’s just that there were other forces (maybe some in the band’s control, maybe others not so much) that maybe hindered the band’s performances (when recording it) and how “All My Life” became the ‘you’re going to buy this album for the track’ sort of song (whereas, nowadays, you can just buy the damn song). There are some other cracking tunes on this album and some of them did make it as singles. When you consider their previous album – 1999’s There Is Nothing Left To Lose – sounded like such a laid-back record, and it’s my favourite album of theirs, then yeah maybe you can understand why.
Songs like “Low” (the music video featuring Jack Black), “Times Like These” (the band playing on different highways) and “Have It All” (released as a single, but no music video) were all released as singles, but other songs such as “Disenchanted Lullaby”, “Halo”, “Overdrive” and “Come Back” are all other great songs. The one song that I always remember fondly (recorded at the same time) is “The One”, which had its own music video (a rather funny video actually) and was featured in the film Orange County and was released as a single (although hard to find nowadays).
Nowadays, I rarely listen to the album. What the band did afterwards – 2005’s In Your Honour (especially the acoustic tour they did) – I thought was really great. A step in the right direction, with the band choosing to showcase two sides of themselves: heavy and soft.