The gun featured on the cover for Foo Fighters self titled debut is the “XZ-38 Disintegrator Pistol,” which was released in 1935 as a tie-in toy for the Buck Rogers comic strip and radio show.




The photo was taken by Grohl’s then wife, talented photographer Jennifer Youngblood, who is responsible for some iconic images of Grohl’s former band Nirvana.


Grohl has, or had, a fanboy-ish obsession with all things sci-fi. “Foo Fighter” is a term that was used by American fighter pilots in WWII to describe UFOs or mysterious ariel phenomena. This album was released by Capitol Records in association with his own label,  Roswell Records.

It’s all very mid-90’s and takes me back to a time when Scully was the sexiest woman in the world and the truth was almost certainly out there. After the considerable success of this album, in the next two years the Foo Fighters would record “Walking After You” for the The X-Files soundtrack and “A320″ for the Godzilla soundtrack. How endearingly geeky!

What I like about this cover is the treatment of the ray-gun. It doesn’t cash in on the object’s kitsch-value but instead presents the ray-gun as an artifact – a weapon from some bygone era now that only lives on in scratchy sepia-toned memories.

And for someone who still remembers reading about Cobain’s death in the newspapers and then putting up a couple of extra Nirvana posters on the wall, there’s also something meaningful about Grohl’s decision to put a toy gun on the cover. If only Kurt had been content with goofy plastic guns like Dave.