“To any musician, young or old, a beautiful studio full of instruments like a playground. To me, I’m like a kid in a candy store,” says Dave Grohl at the beginning of his latest documentary Play.
Released today, the 30-minute documentary shows a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of Grohl’s 23-minute track on which he plays seven different instruments. The documentary shows Grohl rehearsing, recording, working through riffs, and even messing up a couple of drum takes.
“Most musicians are always chasing the next challenge; you never feel satisfied, and you never feel like you’ve completely mastered the instrument you’re playing. It’s always going to be a puzzle; it’s always going to be a challenge. It’s a beautiful mystery. But once it gets its hooks in you, that’s when the obsession and the drive really kick in,” says Grohl in the documentary.
The song is a 23-minute prog-rock journey. It’s a track that not only showcases Grohl’s musical talents but also showcases the artist’s musical influences. The instrumental is filled with pounding drums, soaring riffs, and beautiful crescendos.
The guitar riffs are reminiscent of Dave’s early work with the Foo Fighters. The first five minutes of the track are a guitar tour de force that could easily be leftover riffs from The Colour and The Shape. The track shifts between hard-rocking heaviness, to Rush-inspired atmospheric jams, to Queens of the Stone Age-inspired stoner rock riffs.
You can head over to Dave Grohl’s Roswell Films website here for an interactive experience with Play. On the site, fans can explore the track by choosing which audio and video you’d like to experience. Click on “Choose Video” on the site and select to view only one instrument. Once you do that, you can also click on “Choose Audio” to listen to the isolated track of the instrument you are watching or the complete master audio. You can go back to the complete master performance video, or toggle between individual instruments and audio at any time and even download sheet music for the track to practice along.
What inspired Grohl to take on this endeavor? The answer is quite simple: his kids.
“Watching my kids start to play music and learn to sing or play drums, it brings me back to the time when I was their age listening to albums, learning from listening.”
The end of documentary culminates in a video overdubbed with various Dave Grohls playing instruments. From guitars to drums to synths, all footage is rendered to look as though there seven different Daves in the same room playing. The footage is masterfully edited by Brandon Trost (The Disaster Artist, This Is The End).
Grohl has plans to release a limited-edition vinyl version of Play this September. Fans can pre-order their copy at the official website here. The digital version of Play is available to stream and download now.
Watch the video of Play below.