Queens of the Stone Age with Eagles of Death Metal at Pacific Coliseum 01/24/2018
With transit suspiciously busier than usual for a Wednesday night it would have been hard not to notice that something was going on in East Van. “Wouldn’t it be rad if they brought out someone cool like Dave Grohl” a kid on the bus blurted. “I dunno” his friend responded before taking a sneaky gulp from his hip flask, “but I’d really like to see Josh Homme play with Eagles of Death Metal though, that would be the dream!”
People in Vancouver had been excited about Queens of the Stone Age playing here since the tour was announced last October. When word got out that they would be joined by the Eagles of Death Metal the excitement was ramped up a level.
The two bands have worked closely together in the past; in fact Josh Homme was one of the founding members of Eagles of Death Metal along with the band’s charismatic front man Jesse Hughes. There’s no doubt that a number of excited fans at the show were sitting hopeful that they might catch a glimpse of Homme playing with Eagles of Death Metal.
Eagles of Death Metal are known for being an entertaining rock ‘n’ roll band to catch live; with flirtatious songs and tongue in cheek raunchy music videos, the band really play to their pseudo-sexy image and Wednesday night (Jan. 24) was no exception to this. It is rare to see a music venue so full for an opening act, but Eagles of Death Metal proved they have just what it takes to pull people in early. Hughes’ stage presence is not to be under estimated. He lead the band through hit songs from across their catalogue of records – the band will be celebrating their twentieth anniversary this year.
The band chose to pay homage to Davie Bowie by putting their own twist on his track “Moonage Daydream” and ended their set with a lengthy version of “Speaking in Tongues,” a standout single from their first record Peace, Love, Death Metal. During this last song the crowd was treated to not one, but two guitar solos from both Dave Catching (and his impressive beard), and Jennie Vee.
After a short break Queens of the Stone Age took to the stage and with no introduction went straight into their first song – “If I Had a Tail.” It wasn’t until after their second song that Homme waved and greeted the room with a cheeky “Let’s get drunk together!”
The band were sharply dressed with all of them, except their drummer Jon Theodore, wearing full suits. Homme had opted for an outfit in which he could easily be mistaken for an auburn-haired Elvis. They kept the stage set-up simple yet effective, having lighting tubes as their only props, which the band frequently toyed with during songs.
Almost the entire venue was standing after the opening beats of “Feet Don’t Fail Me.” a popular track from their latest record Villains (with which the current tour also shares its name) and the stalls shook under the movement of a few thousand feet.
The band had recently received a fair amount of negative press, following an incident with Josh Homme and a photographer at an LA show last year. Following backlash from the incident Homme came forward with an apology where stated that he was “gonna have to figure out some stuff.” The Vancouver show was the band’s second night back on tour after taking a month out of the spotlight and it appeared that Homme was in a much better place.
Lighters and cell phone lights were pulled out during an eerie rendition of “Villains of Circumstance” and the crowd was treated to a couple of songs that the band doesn’t usually play live. This treat inevitably made up for the fact that fan favourite “Feel Good Hit of the Summer” was noticeably missing from the setlist; but with a career spanning over 20 years they can’t be blamed for having to omit songs when picking from their extensive catalogue.
At the end of the night the band took to the stage again for a three song encore then went out on a high, choosing to play hit track “A Song for the Dead” last. Did the kid on the bus get to see Dave Grohl? No. Did Josh Homme take to the stage during Eagles of Death Metal? No. But the only thing anyone was complaining about at the end of the night was the weather outside and the full busses.