|Review by: Lydia
It was a long-ass drive for me from Louisiana to Atlanta for this show, but it was more than worth it. This was the opening show on a very short and none too secret club tour with Dave Grohl on the skins. I wasn't expecting the club to be full, even though the show had been sold out for a while. I got there with my cousin around 7:30 and it was pretty packed. I had my stuff squirreled away to tape the show, and so I headed off to get set up. The dj, C minus, sucked incredibly, but he at least let me know that the show hadn't started yet. I got set up, bought some t-shirts, and worked my way down to the stage.
The crowd seemed very excited--especially in contrast to the last time I saw them, which was in Arkansas in 2000. Only 30 other people were there that time and they weren't expecting what the Queens had to throw at the them. The crowd seemed fairly familiar with QOTSA this time, though, even if it seemed like most of them were there just to see Dave Grohl. I got right up to the left side of the stage and kept about two people between myself and the security guard so that my mics wouldn't be discovered. I saw Nick go to the backstage entrance while I was waiting for the show to start and someone handed him a cd (probably for Josh/Rekords Rekords).
The band took the stage around 8:15-8:30--way too early, in my opinion. Nick came out first in his pants and his tattoos, then everyone else came out. Nick was on the left, Dave at the drums, an empty mic was in the middle of the stage, Josh was next to the mic, and Troy was hidden over in the right-hand corner, almost behind the ceiling's support beam. They opened with a brand new song (The Sky is Falling) and while no one in the crowd had heard it, everyone seemed really into it. The band seemed really into it, too, especially Nick. He kept walking out to the edge of the stage and leaning into the crowd. Josh looked at Dave a couple of times and Dave watched the crowd for the whole show. After the first song, they went into some oldies: Millionaire (Nick was really into this one), Monsters, and Avon. Then they played another new one, First It Giveth, which was my favorite new song after the night was over. They played some more and then Mark Lanegan came out to do Hanging Tree. He didn't look like he was enjoying himself very much, and seemed kinda happy to get backstage again.
In between each song, Dave doused himself with a bottle of water, and usually got some on Josh or Nick. The interplay between them was fun to watch. Josh had a Corona by his amp, but he didn't get back to it too often. Josh and Nick switched guitars alot, either because they wouldn't stay in tune or because they were playing in different tunings. The roadies always had a fresh one ready, though. They played a few more new ones and then Lost Art, and then they said goodnight and went backstage. No one left, though. Nick came back out after a minute or two and said, "This is the best bass solo I know," and started playing Feel Good Hit of the Summer. Then Josh, Dave, and Troy came out. Josh said, "This is my morning to-do list" and started singing. That was about the extent of the stage banter, except for the few times Josh announced a new song title. Mark came out again for the closer, Song for the Deaf, which rocked harder than I remember it rocking from the 8/21 show last year.
I tried to get backstage after the show, but since I spent about twenty mintues trying to get a setlist, I missed the guy who was giving out the passes. I did get to meet Hutch, though. Hutch is a very cool guy. Plus, I didn't get caught taping the show.
All in all, it was a shorter show than I expected. I also would've liked to hear You Can't Quit Me Baby, Mexicola, Rickshaw, and Infinity, but what the hell. It was a great show no matter what. The band was really into the show and the crowd was pretty cool (at least they didn't boo, even if most of em probably wouldn't have been there if Dave wasn't drumming). Everyone sounded great. Dave Grohl did a great job on the skins. I just wish they'd play more shows in the South, or that I could have seen another show on this short tour. They say they're going to play some more US shows in the fall--I just hope they come somewhere near me.
| Review by: Billboard.com
Dave Grohl looked right at home hunched over a drum set, shirtless, chewing gum wildly as his black gloved hands brought down thunderous beats behind one of today's heaviest bands. The show served as the kickoff for Queens Of The Stone Age's two-week club tour with Grohl behind the drumkit, and for 90 minutes, the group proved why its evolved take on stoner metal has captivated audiences since forming from the ashes of Kyuss in 1998.
Guitarist Josh Homme and bassist Nick Oliveri have been playing together for over a decade, but were clearly enjoying themselves with Grohl bringing up the rear. His drumming came close to overpowering Homme's trademark guitar sound, a layer of thick fuzz and rapid-fire riffs blasted through rows of custom amplifiers. Grohl's inclusion on this tour follows his work on Queens' upcoming release "Songs for the Deaf," due Aug. 12 from Interscope.
The band debuted a number of songs from the upcoming album Monday night, two of which featured former Screaming Trees frontman Mark Lanegan on vocals. His haunting tones mixed well with Homme's own relaxed timbre, particularly on "Hanging Tree," a track from the latest edition of Homme and Oliveri's self-released "Desert Sessions."
Their ease in recording with friends and musicians outside of their own band has clearly smoothed Lanegan and Grohl's transition into the band. Another track from an earlier Desert Session, "You Think I'm Worth A Dollar, But I...," (sic)came early in the set and its catchy rock refrain of "Give me some more, give me some more" summed up the crowd's anticipation for the show.
To offset all the new material the band placated old fans with a number of tracks from its 1998 self-titled Loosegroove debut, including "Regular John," "Avon," and a slightly reworked "You Would Know." Instead of flowing smoothly the band chopped up every line of the verse, accentuating the bizarre lyrics: "They just happy robots, live on hill of beans. You and I cut from same cloth, ripping at the seams. Cut...Snip...Cut..." (sic)
Material from the critically acclaimed 2000 release "Rated R" was limited but included a ripping rendition of "Tension Head" with Oliveri on vocals. The fast and furious song once again highlighted Grohl's skills. At times throughout the show, Oliveri and Homme would exchange a glance and a smile as Grohl pulled off a fill or particularly crushing roll.
"The Lost Art of Keeping A Secret" closed the set and the crowd remained rooted in its places, either stunned like deer in oncoming headlights or rabidly awaiting the encore. Oliveri soon took the stage alone and told the crowd, "this is the best bass solo I know," leading into "Feel Good Hit of the Summer." The audience reached its most feverish pitch as Oliveri and Homme chanted the song's only lyrics: "Nicotine, valium, vicodin, marijuana, ecstasy, and alcohol. C-c-c-c-c-c-c-Cocaine!"
The evening ended with the new album's title track, an elaborate and noisy closer that was grand in scope. Lanegan once again returned to the stage to add his vocals but the song fell back on Oliveri, Homme, and Grohl jamming for extended periods. At its conclusion, Homme and Oliveri placed their wailing guitars against the amps, waved briefly to the crowd, and let the feedback serve as their exit music.
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