By Tom Sinclair
Updated October 01, 2007 04:00 AM
Credit: Laura Kleinhenz

Perfect albums — those on which every song impinges on the listener in astonishing, edifying, delightful ways — are so rare, they seem almost mythical. It’s no secret that most of the truly life-changing records belong to another age (’60s, ’70s, ’80s, take your pick) — a time when, as the saying goes, the music mattered. But every so often, a modern-day CD that reverberates with the conviction and artistry of bygone days comes along to blow a jaded mind or two.

Case in point: Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace, the Foo Fighters’ terrific sixth studio album. At first listen, it seems Dave Grohl & Co. aren’t doing anything radically new (except perhaps integrating the acoustic/electric schism they showcased on their last CD, 2005’s In Your Honor, into individual songs). Yet it isn’t long before you realize how frickin’ right it all sounds, how damn near flawless the tone of the whole set feels. The band has taken everything it’s always done best, from giddy power pop (”Cheer Up, Boys (Your Make-up Is Running)”) to country-tinged musings (”Summer’s End”) to wistful acoustic ballads (”Home”), and brought it to the next level. Like the greats, the Foos have found a way to create their own archetype, with an instinctive feel for what constitutes a killer song. From this point on, ”Fooey” will be as august an expression of approbation as ”Beatlesque.” A

Download This: Stream ”Cheer Up, Boys (Your Make-up Is Running)” and the rest of the new Foo Fighters CD at AOL Music