Meaning of “Rest” by Foo Fighters
It has been argued, as is a subtheme of or inspiration behind “But Here We Are”, that this track (“Rest”) serves as the vocalist’s ruminations on death, as encouraged by the passing of a couple of loved ones close to the Foo Fighters in the recent past. And that theory appears to be spot on, as the chorus and second verse in particular, as well as part of the first verse, can be interpreted in such a manner.
You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Foo Fighters's Rest at Lyrics.org.
For instance, the vocalist lovingly encouraging the addressee to “rest now” in the chorus can be taken along the lines of resting in peace. Furthermore, Dave seems to get existential in the second verse, noting how “life is just a game of luck”.
That is “until our time is through”, which sounds like an allusion to death. And the latter half of the first verse, where he mentions for instance ‘closing his eyes’ and feeling the touch of someone who obviously isn’t there physically, sounds like he’s referring to perceiving the spirit of a loved one in the immediate vicinity.
“Rest, you can rest now
Rest, you will be safe now”
The outro, meanwhile, seemingly represents a dream Grohl has of actually meeting up with this person, “in the warm Virginia sun”.
On that note, it should be noted that the first name of Dave’s mom, who passed away in 2022, was Virginia. So it wouldn’t be out of the way to speculate that it is said event, i.e. her passing, which led to the creation of this track.
And if so, “Rest” is in tune with the type of bereavement songs we usually come across via the music industry, i.e. having been inspired by the death a real-life loved one in the vocalist’s life, the singer hoping or envisioning that said individual is enjoying the afterlife and also looking forward to once again crossing paths with the departed in the future.
THE TEAM BEHIND “REST”
Dave Grohl, the lead singer of the crew, gets writing credit for this song alongside his Foo Fighter bandmates, keyboardist Rami Jaffee, guitarist Chris Shiflett, bassist Nate Mendel and guitarist Pat Smear. Foo Fighters recently added another member, drummer Josh Freese, but apparently that was after the recording of “But Here Are We”, their 11th studio album, from which “Rest” is derived (being the final track on the LP’s standard playlist).
The producer of this song is Greg Kurstin, and the labels that backed its release on 2 June 2023 are RCA and Roswell, the latter of which was founded by Grohl nearly three decades ago.