Sunny Day Real Estate drummer William Goldsmith has accused Dave Grohl of burying an unreleased SDRE album in a Facebook post, as BrooklynVegan points out. “Recently by way of objective ears I have been reminded of the fact that the greatest Sunny Day Real Estate record ever made remains silenced, abandoned and buried within the murkiest depths of David Grohls sock drawer,” he wrote.
Goldsmith has a long history with Grohl. He played with Foo Fighters from 1995 to 1997, but Grohl famously re-recorded all of his drum parts on 1997’s The Colour And The Shape without telling him. As of an interview earlier this year, Goldsmith was still pretty pissed. SDRE bassist Nate Mendel, meanwhile, has been playing with Foo Fighters consistently since around the same time.
Sunny Day Real Estate reunited in 2009. After touring, they went into the studio to work on new music, but multiple other band members have gone on the record saying that nothing came out of those sessions. Mendel told MusicRadar in 2013 that the “recording process just fell apart.” And last year in our interview with SDRE leader Jeremy Enigk, he backed up that claim and elaborated that “Lipton Witch,” their first song in 14 years that came out on a 7″ in 2014, was pretty much the only finished track that made it out of those sessions.
In his Facebook post, Goldsmith posted five minutes worth of instrumentals that he alludes come from this “abandoned” album. Here’s his full post:
Recently by way of objective ears I have been reminded of the fact that the greatest Sunny Day Real Estate record ever made remains silenced, abandoned and buried within the murkiest depths of David Grohls sock drawer. It’s both a shocking slap of reality and a swift kick in the balls. Gets harder to handle each time. Somehow someday – something has to be done. The tragedy of it is literally manifesting into physical pain. It honestly feels like someone has taken a part of me as a human being and locked it in a closet. My wife looked at me this evening and said “I am starting to understand what’s been haunting you for the past 6 years because it’s starting to haunt me as well.” This is not the first time I’ve had my voice taken from me. But now This music hasn’t just been taken away from me anymore – now it’s been taken away from my children. Unforgivable.
Mendel told Pitchfork that “there is no truth to this story.”
UPDATE: William Goldsmith has posted a longer statement to his Facebook page providing some more detail and clarification as well as some more confusion. Per his post, it seems like the “abandoned” album was recorded at Studio 606, with is the Foo Fighters’ California-based studio. Goldsmith also mentions Jeremy Enigk, who he says “did not receive the moral support as well as engineering that he deserved,” and pushes back against Nate Mendel’s characterization that his story is not true.
“Anyone who claims that there is no unfinished Sunny day record collecting dust I would have to agree to disagree. But that’s my opinion about it – I heard it objectively and it hit me like a ton of bricks,” Goldsmith wrote. Here’s the full post:
For clarification purposes – Dave’s sock drawer was meant to figuratively represent studio 606. To clarify – there are many ingredients that resulted in the abandonment of LP5. Ingredients that I had to put together myself and find out later on. One of the unfortunate elements being that Jeremy did not receive the moral support as well as engineering that he deserved and I hold myself accountable just as much as everyone else involved for that mistake. The reference to Dave’s sock drawer meant studio 606 which was where it was essentially left. If I come across as being a little bit outraged it’s simply because I’ve had the unfortunate experience of hard work being disregarded with no communication or explanation as to why. Trust me it would eat at you as well. I doubt many of these issues would become issues at all if there was a bit more communication as opposed to none at all. Anyone who claims that there is no unfinished Sunny day record collecting dust I would have to agree to disagree. But that’s my opinion about it – I heard it objectively and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I know that Jeremy is gonna be upset with me for speaking out about this again but when I hear those tracks through the ears of people who I respect i.e. Justin Tamminga and my wife Channeary and I see them feeling as devastated as I do over this whole thing it’s hard to stay quiet. Compound that with it being an important part of me that refused to be realized as what will be left for my children to ponder and you have something equivalent to heart break. So no I was not meaning to claim Dave single handedly prevented the record from being finished. He just owns the place where it was abandoned. However he wasn’t too thrilled when Nate played with the fire theft so I doubt he thought about making it so Nate had the time to see it through. But it’s misunderstandings like this that arise because people don’t communicate. At least not with me with the exception of Jeremy. Dave and I should have hashed this shit out through honest human interaction a decade and a half ago. And Nate – the last time I talked to you was when you guys said to be by the phone the next day to have a conference call about finishing LP5. The phone never rang and I haven’t heard from you since then which was 2011 if memory serves. Granted I went into deep solitude after that but where else are you going to go after constantly being disregarded like an old shirt.