(Check out our final ACL wrap-up slideshow on Monday for photos of this and other acts from ACL)
The crowds may not have been all that familiar with the catalog of Them Crooked Vultures, the supergroup comprising of Dave Grohl (Nirvana, Foo Fighters, others), Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age, Eagles of Death Metal, others), Alain Johannes (Queens of the Stone Age, Eleven, others) and John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin). But that didn't stop the rock fans at ACL from packing the field before the XBox stage at ACL well before the band's set in anticipation of its debut.
And, even though the songs were unfamiliar to the audiences, the crowds didn't leave disappointed. Blasted by riff after riff in an brutally riff-heavy bona-fide rock display, the crowd simply stood in awe of the music being played before their eyes from this set of legendary rockers. Sure, Homme offered the names of various songs before launching into them in an attempt to give the fans some backgroud, but it didn't matter.
These fans came simply for the rock--and that's just what they got.
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Homme, as compelling and swaggering a frontman as exists in the rock game, led the band as it snarled through its set, clearly appreciative of the audience's support. But it was Grohl and Jones who truly shines. Hammering his drum kit with an intensity not seen from the Foo Fighter in years, Grohl was a blur of flying hair and flailing limbs. Jones, meanwhile, no spry chicken at 63 years old, hardly showed his age as he switched from keys to bass to eight-string bass throughout the course of the set, all the while beaming like a kid on Christmas.
And he had all the reason to do so; the crowd ate up the band's brutally heavy and fast yet accessible brand of rock, and just a couple of months into its formaton, this act proved well-deserving of its night-time slot.
Sure, maybe it had earned it originally based on the merits of the members' prior accomplishments, but it justified it with this hour-plus display.