A few months ago, the Foo Fighters spoke with NME about their latest album, Concrete and Gold.

“Every time we start a record, Dave [Grohl] goes, ‘We need to get weird on this record,’” drummer Taylor Hawkins said. “Then we always kinda pull back a little and go, ‘Let’s just make a good rock n’ roll record.’ This is the weird record.”

It sure would be nice sometimes to hear albums the way that the people who make them do. A surprising cameo from Boyz II Men’s Shawn Stockman and the odd tempo shift and howled vocal aside, Concrete and Gold sounds more or less like any other Foo Fighters album.

That’s not a bad thing, mind you — the album’s 11 tracks are never less than listenable. It helps a lot that Grohl and company sound as tight and hard-rocking here as they do on The Colour and the Shape.

Problems only come up if you start digging for some greater context or meaning. Grohl has talked about a theme that runs throughout Concrete and Gold. What’s the theme, you ask? Apparently, something along the lines of, “It’s better to burn out than to fade away.” Not exactly a groundbreaking idea at this point in rock history.

Generic lines like this sestet from “Run” don’t do much to liven up this shopworn sentiment: [LISTEN]

Perhaps these lines from the opening track “T-Shirt” could sum up Grohl’s ultimate ambitions: [LISTEN]

No shame in that. It’s like Clint Eastwood once said: “A man’s got to know his limitations.”