Category: Supergroups

Live review: Them Crooked Vultures at the Roxy

 

On Monday night, the new hard-rock supergroup Them Crooked Vultures played the coziest room of its very young career, charging through a semi-surprising 90-minute set at West Hollywood’s Roxy, roughly 24 hours before the band was set to appear at the much larger Wiltern for a sold-out performance.

Yet if a 500-capacity club seems like a strange domain for these A-list heavy hitters — Vultures consists of Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones on bass, Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl on drums and, as frontman, Josh Homme of Queens of the Stone Age — they handily resolved the disconnect by treating the Roxy as they would a sports arena: At several points, it was hard to hear the music over the groan of a sound system pushed well beyond its limits.

On its self-titled debut, in stores this week, Them Crooked Vultures brandishes its muscular low end like a weapon; rhythm sections don’t come much dream-teamier than Jones and Grohl, so the band’s decision to build its songs around fat bass-and-drum grooves was a wise one.

Or at least a clever one: Nothing about the infectiously slapdash “Them Crooked Vultures” speaks especially of wisdom, least of all Homme’s goofy lyrics, which gravitate toward stoner-dude wordplay like that in “Mind Eraser, No Chaser” and “Interlude With Ludes.” That’s a pleasant surprise on an album that might have bogged down with the collective weight of these players’ impressive pedigrees.
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Details released on last-minute Crooked Vultures gig at the Roxy

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Hard-hitting rock 'n' roll supergroup Them Crooked Vultures will perform a not-so-secret show tonight at the Roxy. The appearance is in advance of their Tuesday night gig at the Wiltern, which is sold out. The Times profiled the act, featuring John Paul Jones, Josh Homme and Dave Grohl, in today's Calendar section, and Grohl teases that the songs will be stretched out for the live performance.

"We can create those moments where you get the chills, but we can't choreograph them. They just sort of happen," Grohl told The Times. "They happened within the first three minutes that we jammed ever. And they happen every single night."

Details on tonight's gig after the jump.

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Them Crooked Vultures announce Los Angeles date

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After debuting in Chicago in August and playing shows in New York, Boston and Austin, Texas, among others, supergroup Them Crooked Vultures will finally land in Los Angeles on Nov. 17. The group, featuring an all-star lineup of Dave Grohl, Joshua Homme and John Paul Jones, will make its first L.A. appearance, at the Wiltern, the same day as the release of its self-titled debut.

Tickets officially go on sale Saturday. A Live Nation pre-sale is set for Thursday. The act's mini-West Coast jaunt will also include dates in Oakland (Nov. 19) and Seattle (Nov. 21).

The group is releasing its debut single, "New Fang," today as well. The cut is streaming on the band's MySpace page. It's a trippy, rhythmically dense number, with interlocking riffs and bluesy slide-guitar flourishes. 

-- Todd Martens

Photo: Them Crooked Vultures. From left: John Paul Jones, Dave Grohl and Joshua Homme. Credit: EPA

John Paul Jones, Dave Grohl, Josh Homme unveil Them Crooked Vultures

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While a large number of Los Angeles-area music fans dealt with the frustrations of the shuttered Hard Summer event at the Forum, our Chicago friends had a bounty of music this weekend. Lollapalooza, aside from scorching heat and a bit of rain, appears to have gone relatively smoothly, and Greg Kot's Turn It Up blog offers detailed day-by-day takes of what went down.

Sets from Bat for Lashes, Lou Reed, Dhani Harrison's newno2, the Gaslight Anthem and Chicago newcomers He Say, She Say sound like they were more than worth braving the air-conditioned buses and crowds of 70,000 or more.

But Lolla was just one of Chicago's main events this weekend. Later, Them Crooked Vultures was unveiled at Wrigleyville club Metro, featuring Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones on bass/keyboard, Foo Fighter Dave Grohl on drums and Josh Homme from Queens of the Stone Age on guitar/lead vocals. Little was known heading in, but Kot was at the post-Lollapalooza show late Sunday/early Monday, and the news sounds good.

Kot wrote: 

After debuting a dozen songs at Metro, the group made it very clear that it’s not only for real, but also has the chance to be the exception to the super-group rule. Most of these Frankenstein projects usually end up being less than the sum of their parts, but Crooked Vultures sounded like it was on to something fresh, invigorating and just plain nasty.

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