Them Crooked Vultures bring rock'n'roll to Denver

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Posted Tue, Apr 27, 2010

DENVER – The latest and most successful supergroup, Them Crooked Vultures, showed Denver how to rock and roll with their two hour concert at the Fillmore Auditorium on Monday night.

Josh Homme, frontman of Queens of The Stone Age, and Dave Grohl, frontman of Foo Fighters and former Nirvana drummer, are already two big names worth paying to see. But the most legendary member of TCV, and maybe the one people were most excited about, was John Paul Jones, former Led Zeppelin bassist and multi-instrumentalist.

Lines formed along East Colfax and Clarkson as people ranging between ages 16 and 60 sporting Led Zeppelin, Foo Figthers and Queens of The Stone Age T-shirts waited in line for the doors of the venue to open.

The Fillmore opened its doors at 7 p.m. sharp and the rock fans slowly trickled in and lined up as close to the stage as possible.

An hour went by painfully slow before the opening act Mini Mansions got on stage to play a 30 minute set. They had a strange lineup with keyboard, percussions and bass being the primary instruments and the musicians interchangeably playing guitar on some songs. The music was strong but the vocals and harmonies sounded weak at some points.

The next half hour went by even slower. The audience was getting anxious waiting for the headlining band which was scheduled to go on at 9 p.m. Security guards in front of the stage were telling the fans, truthfully or not, that they had pushed the show back to 9:30 p.m., making everyone even more impatient.

But a couple minutes after the originally planned time, out came Grohl and he was met with the roaring cheers from the crowd. Homme and Jones followed and the audience was only getting louder.

“Elephants” was the opener for the almost 120 minute set during which the band flawlessly delivered the true sound of rock and roll. And not one of the new family friendly mutant forms of it, but the original, underground, frowned-upon-by-your-mother rock and roll.

The combination of Grohl’s never-ending energy and speed on the drums, Homme’s guitar riffs and true rock star attitude and Jones’ faultless execution on bass, keyboards, violin, and any other instrument you can imagine, made for a performance without a dull moment.

Every song on their self-titled album was played to perfection, as would be expected from musicians with a track record like they have. One of the highlights was “Scumbag Blues,” during which the audience was treated with a 6 minute instrumental section with Grohl, Homme and Jones interchanging unimaginable solos.

“No One Loves Me & Neither Do I” was a definite crowd pleaser with its gritty lyrics and old school melody. “Interlude With Ludes” was probably the most fun to watch, with a slightly drunk Homme putting down his guitar and lighting up a cigarette to bust some Elvis-style moves all around the stage before unexpectedly climbing up on the kick drum.

Near the end of the performance, Homme and Grohl sat back and became two more members of the crowd as Jones gave a keyboard solo reminiscent of the 1950’s musicians that basically invented the genre.

After an exhausting two hours, Homme announced that it was time for the last song of the night and they delivered it with all the energy they had left.

Around 11 p.m. the almost surreal show was over and the thousands of fans flooded out of the venue after buying their respective band T-shirts and vinyl records. Them Crooked Vultures did not disappoint, delivering a night of rock and roll that Denver will not soon forget.

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