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Them Crooked Vultures, Sound Academy, Toronto, ON, CA

9 October 2009 2,049 views No Comment

9th October 2009 –


Set list:


Dead End Friends

Scumbag Blues




New Fang

Interlude w/Ludes



Mind Eraser, No Chaser

Nobody Loves Me And Neither Do I



Them Crooked Vultures | Toronto

Posted by: theconcertaholic

Come on….“Them Crooked Vultures” …even with the name they are off to a good start . The short videos on YouTube had me interested and well being a concertaholic I knew reputation was enough for me to get a ticket and experience these guys live. I’ve listened to more Zeppelin than Foo’s or Queens of The Stone Age… so I will not be detailing the guys careers here or have a big say in who they sound like most. Just the show as I saw it.

…..I take my hobby serious and jumped into the rainy line-up around 4pm. Only 20 people in line so far…so the front row was going to happen for me and it did. After a few hours of swapping concert stories with various music lovers including two fathers with their teenage kids… we headed in and I locked myself onto the rail directly in front of where one of the world’s most talented bassist’s would stand for 90 minutes.

With no CD out yet and very little information about the band… the rumours were no opening band and no encore. Fine I’ll take what I can get. Only moments away we are about to witness…Josh Homme on guitar and lead vocals, Dave Grohl on drums and John Paul Jones teaching bass. Plus, there was a fourth Crooked Vulture Alain Johannes on rhythm guitar.

The house music stops, the vultures walk out…say hello and explode into “Elephants”. The groove was on, the roll was heavy and Goosebumps happened at 30 seconds into a song I’ve only heard twice on YouTube. Grohl gang banged his drum kit and I learned quickly that Homme knew what to do with a guitar… and John Paul Jones…. well it hadn’t really hit me that it was him 12 feet in front of me.


After the first song the crowd erupted and moved in closer as Josh started to introduce his Crooked band mates. He saved Jones for last and rather than say his name, he simply pointed over to him….and the entire crowd started chanting “JOHN PAUL JONES, JOHN PAUL JONES, JOHN PAUL JONES”  a slight smile from the man himself and that was just one of those moments you talk about for the next 10 years a parties!

The following 80+ minutes was a thunderous music demonstration from multiple genres along with creating one in the middle of it all. The direction changed too many times to remember with layer upon layer it seemed like a tennis match at times… for myself trying to decide who to zero in on as the boomerang of rock, blues and psychedelic bounced around in between flashes of light. For chemistry I noticed Josh really connecting with JPJ a few times…along with numerous vocal fills from each of the guys including John Paul Jones.

As far as musicians from different bands hooking up… I saw Chicken foot and for the money in a small venue it was fun although the music didn’t make much sense to me. This evening’s performance and this band made sense. There is thought behind all Them Crooked Vultures… from the Bonham pounding Grohl to John Paul Jones playing that piano outro on Daffodils…straight on over to Homme who stood tall, proud and confident of what he and band mate Alain Johannes were delivering.

In short…Elephants as a first song took me to a place many encores never have and the pace throughout was amazing right up to the last couple of  songs…… here is “Nobody Love Me” just deadly…..

.….and then… the closing tune  “Warsaw” . This was so killer I couldn’t lift my arm to video and the insane jam for the final few minutes..Was paralyzing….. They drew us in… playing harder and harder and then it ENDED. Done Right there. No Encore.

I got it…they had me… I wanted more. 90 minutes of songs I’ve never heard and I wanted another “set”.


TORONTO – If the future of rock and roll includes one part Foo Fighters, one part Led Zeppelin and one part Queens Of The Stone Age, then it is still in good and incredibly capable hands.
Toronto Sun
Them Crooked Vultures – consisting of Led Zeppelin bassist John Paul Jones, Queens Of The Stone Age front man Josh Homme and guitarist Alain Johannes and drummer Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters – shone during a near flawless 80-minute set before a sold-out crowd Friday night at Toronto’s Sound Academy.
And fortunately, this wasn’t an exercise in rehashing their hits. Instead it was an interesting and at times spectacular display of musicianship, with Jones sometimes pulling his band mates into ’70s heavy blues-tinged rock while Homme and Grohl pulled Jones into a more contemporary rock realm.
With no new album out – although one expected by year’s end – Them Crooked Vultures opened with Elephants, a boogie-cum-bluesy nugget which set the path the quartet sailed down quite easily.
“I feel good,” Homme said following the song, quickly kicking into the somewhat relentless Dead End Friends, a tune similar to Queens Of The Stone Age’s Go With The Flow which Grohl rounded off nicely with rapid fills and rolls.
While Homme was lead singer for all of the 13 songs, his vocals often played second fiddle to the chemistry Jones and Grohl seemed to have from start to finish, especially evident on Scumbag Blues with Jones playing like a man 36 and not 63 years young. Jones also effortlessly played off Homme’s fine guitar work during the tune’s homestretch.
After Homme stated they had a lot of new music to get through, Them Crooked Vultures were again extremely tight and polished during the dance-rock tinted Gunman. Sadly, they had a slight hiccup with Caligulove which sounded unfocused and left Jones trying to salvage the number with a Doors-isque keyboard solo to little effect.
Thankfully the last miscue was a brief but bizarre Interlude With Ludes as Homme went without a guitar for this set breather.
All was forgiven though when Them Crooked Vultures launched into a new, well, newer song Reptiles that garnered one of the louder cheers of the night, the sum far greater than the talented parts performing it onstage.
Yet that basically paled in comparison to the evening’s two show stoppers, the first being a lengthy Daffodils, a punishing and intense effort comparable to material from Zeppelin’s Physical Graffiti. And Homme, Grohl and Jones went to town on the lengthy jam before Jones tenderly rounded it off with a short but sweet keyboard solo which the crowd loved.
A groove-saturated Nobody Loves Me (And Neither Do I) was highlighted by Jones playing some mean slide guitar and could’ve been extended. But the band was correct to close with Warsaw, initially a swinging kind of ditty that morphed into a long and beautiful, garage-like rave up as Homme and Grohl embody a bit of Jimmy Page and John Bonham, respectively.
No encore was presented, but none was needed as Queens Of The Led Fighters, oops, Them Crooked Vultures earned their keep on this night.


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