Foo Fighters toured in support of their album 'Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace' throughout a large part of 2007 and most of 2008 and as had become common practice over the years the band would work on new songs and ideas whilst on tour and then use the sound check at the shows as a place to play and develop the material. The tour finally came to an end in September of 2008 and the band realised they were in the rather usual situation of being at the end of a traditional 'album cycle', a time they would usually be thinking about taking a few months off, sitting on a large number of new songs and ideas. A decision needed to be made what to do with them.
"I had this idea that we should release an album of all new stuff but just not do anything for it: not go on the road, not make a big deal about it, just record the music and release it" Grohl said of one possibility. "I thought it'd nice just to silently put it out. But it didn't really feel like it was ready and we wouldn't be able to just sit around at home if we had a new album out, and ultimately we just want to go out and play, so rather than jump back in to another cycle of things, it felt like a good idea to stop" he added, rethinking the idea.
That seemingly left two options for the band and their stockpile of new songs. "Okay, we can do one of two things" thought Grohl. "We can not touch these songs until we're ready to make another record, or we can record them right now and forget about them". The band decided on the latter, heading to Grandmaster Records, Ltd in Hollywood, California a week later. "We immediately went into the studio and recorded 14 songs and just put them away. And then I went and played with Them Crooked Vultures" Grohl later recalled.
Of the fourteen tracks the band recorded during this session the identity of just three of them are known. 'Word Forward' and Wheels', later re-recorded (see below session) and released on the 2009 Greatest Hits record and 'Rope', re-recorded during the sessions for 'Wasting Light' and released on that album in 2011.
The other eleven tracks recorded are not known although it is likely many of them were further early versions of tracks featured on the next studio album. It is also not known if any of the 'touring' band, Pat Smear, Rami Jaffee, Jessy Greene or Drew Hester were present at the session.