|JezUK Ltd - Post-GDFAF: Queens of the Stone Age at The Academy|
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This must be how people become drug addicts. I was forcibly late for the last gig I went to, but this evening I cheerily and voluntarily turned up late, thus allowing my first born nipper to go swimming. He's only seven, but he can probably swim rings around you. Anyway, I rolled up at the Academy having completely missed whoever the support band was, assuming there even was one. Perhaps next time I won't even stay for the headliners. *Sniff* I can handle it.
Josh Homme featured twice on the fantasy GDFAF list I drew up back in September, once as a member of desert-rock pioneers Kyuss and once (although I didn't realise at the time) as a member of Seattle proto-grungers Screaming Trees. Consequently, when Queens of the Stone Age appeared on the Academy listings, it seemed silly not to go.
Live, Queens of the Stone Age are more than they are on record, a great deal more. They have a richer, denser sound, more powerful, more hypnotic, more transporting. When you closed your eyes you were taken somewhere else entirely, something my chum Russ would no doubt approve of. I get the feeling that Homme only stops between songs because otherwise the audience would get confused about when to clap. Nearly every song had an extended intro, a bit of a diversion in the middle, and an extended coda. A couple of tracks featured so many false finishes that even Dusty Rhodes would blush. Left to his own devices, I'm sure Homme would go out and play for an hour, maybe two, straight through, take his applause, and then stride manfully off stage. And you know what? That would be brilliant.
This is post-GDFAF, by the way, because I found out about it while researching for or actually going to one of my GDFAF outings. As I left, I pondered once again the eternal gig-goer's questions - is one's listening enjoyment enhanced by holding a cameraphone in the air for several minutes at a time; what are those chaps who bring their girlfriends thinking when it's plain before the band even takes the stage that they don't want to be there; and why in the name of all that's right and proper do people pay good money to see a band and then spend the entire time conducting conversations by bellowing at each other?