Them Crooked Vultures is a rock supergroup formed in Los Angeles in 2009 by John Paul Jones (former member of Led Zeppelin), Dave Grohl (of Foo Fighters and formerly of Nirvana), and Josh Homme (of Queens of the Stone Age and formerly of Kyuss). The group also includes guitarist Alain Johannes during live performances. The band began recording in February 2009, and performed their first gig on August 9, 2009, in Chicago, followed by a European debut on August 19. On October 1 the group embarked on a worldwide tour titled Deserve the Future with dates going into 2010. The band's first single "New Fang" was released in October 2009, followed by the group's self-titled debut album the following month, debuting at number 12 on the Billboard 200. The group won the 2011 Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance for "New Fang".
Formation and early shows (2009)
A collaboration between John Paul Jones, Josh Homme, and Dave Grohl was first publicly mentioned by Grohl in a 2005 interview with Mojo, in which he declared "The next project that I'm trying to initiate involves me on drums, Josh Homme on guitar, and John Paul Jones playing bass. That's the next album. That wouldn't suck bratwurst."
Of the nascent project, Homme's wife Brody Dalle commented in July 2009 that "I'm not at liberty to talk about it [...] but I think [the project] is pretty fucking amazing. Just beats and sounds like you've never heard before." After finding that the name Caligula was already taken, the members arbitrarily chose "Them Crooked Vultures" as a name with no significance. British music magazine NME reported in July 2009 that the trio had begun recording in Los Angeles. The band performed its first show at the Metro, Chicago on August 9, 2009 at midnight. The band played all original material during its 80-minute set, debuting such songs as opener "Elephants", "Scumbag Blues", "Caligulove" and closing song "No One Loves Me & Neither Do I". TCV made its European debut on August 19 with a performance at Melkweg in the Netherlands, the same day on which a short video clip of studio footage was uploaded by the band, featuring the song "No One Loves Me & Neither Do I".
With subsequent festival performances in Europe at Pukkelpop and Lowlands, the band first performed in the United Kingdom at London's Brixton Academy supporting English alternative rock band Arctic Monkeys on August 26. The trio subsequently performed at the Reading and Leeds Festivals on August 28 and 29, playing the Leeds Festival first then moving onto Reading the next day.
Self-titled debut album (2009–2010)
Them Crooked Vultures was released by Interscope Records in North America, and Sony Music internationally. On the 21st of October radio personality Alan Cross announced the lead single for Them Crooked Vultures debut album to be "New Fang" which premiered on October 26. The single was released on November 2 worldwide as a free download. Icon vs. icon subsequently announced that the album would be released on the 17th of November, 2009. On November 3, the band gave a free copy of "Mind Eraser (No Chaser)" to fans that had bought tickets to a live performance and offered it on iTunes as a free download. On November 9, Them Crooked Vultures started streaming their full album on their website, and also through a link to their mailing list with the title "Fuck Patience, Let's Dance."
On September 1, the band announced two 2009 tours of North America and the United Kingdom, in October and December respectively. The 2009 tour was titled Deserve the Future Tour and the UK leg sold out in just under 12 minutes, making it one of the quickest sold tours in the UK — without the band even officially releasing a song to date. On September 21, the band also announced three Germany dates for December 2009.
On January 25, 2010, it was confirmed that the band will be performing at the Download Festival 2010.
On February 6, 2010, the band performed the songs "Mind Eraser, No Chaser" (now the second single) and "New Fang" as musical guests on Saturday Night Live. Dave Grohl also appeared in a sketch near the end of the show. A week later, the band appeared on the long-running PBS show Austin City Limits broadcast February 13, 2010. The band appeared on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live!' on April 13–14, 2010.
The band has also confirmed a series of festival appearances for 2010, including the Coachella Music Festival on April 16, Roskilde Festival, the Peace & Love Festival in Borlange, Sweden on July 1, 2010, and Hove Festival in Arendal, Norway on June 30, 2010. The band closed the show on the Alternastage at Rock Am Ring, Nürburg, Germany, playing after midnight on June 7, 2010.
In March, it was announced that the group were to play at The Royal Albert Hall in aid of The Teenage Cancer Trust with support coming from Little Fish.
On April 20, 2010, Them Crooked Vultures released a digital 45 onto iTunes featuring the songs "Mind Eraser, No Chaser" and the song "Hwy 1" on the A side. "Hwy 1" wasn't featured on the band's self-titled album but was usually played live. For those reasons, the version of "Hwy 1" featured was recorded live in Sydney, Australia. The B-side featured "Vulture Speak", an interview with the band members.
Second studio album (2010–present)
Grohl said in an interview that they are working on a second album that will be "more powerful than the first one". John Paul Jones also stated in an interview while touring in New Zealand that they will be recording a new album. When asked about the futures of Grohl and Homme's bands Jones said that they will get their frontmen back "eventually". A video was uploaded to the band's official YouTube channel entitled 'Fresh Pots' which NME claimed was filmed during recording for their follow-up album. Grohl clarified after the video's release that it was filmed a year prior, during the self-titled album's recording sessions.
On November 12, 2010, in an interview with BBC 6 Music, John Paul Jones has confirmed that the band is ready to resume working on putting together new material for a fresh release, and will go into the studio very soon. Jones has also stated that they are tentatively a year or so away from completing the CD, hinting on a possible late 2011 release.
In November 2011, touring member Alain Johannes noted that there are definitely plans to record a second studio album, stating: "The way that the cycles happen, you know, Dave jumped right into Foos, and then Josh toured more than a solid year with Queens for the self-titled album. So I expect at some point after the Queens cycle that there will be [another album]."
In December 2012, when asked about the band's future, Dave Grohl stated: "We've talked about it, I know that someday we'll get back together and do stuff, because we love playing with each other."
- Official members
- Dave Grohl – drums, percussion, backing vocals
- Josh Homme – lead vocals, lead and rhythm guitar, slide guitar
- John Paul Jones – bass guitar, keyboards, clavinet, piano, keytar, lap steel guitar, slide bass guitar, mandolin, violin, backing vocals
- Touring members
- Alain Johannes – rhythm and lead guitar, slide guitar, bass guitar, keyboards, backing vocals
Awards and nominations
- Grammy Awards
The Grammy Awards are awarded annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.
- Official website
- Them Crooked Vultures on Myspace
- Them Crooked Vultures on Twitter
- Them Crooked Vultures on Facebook
- Them Crooked Vultures on YouTube
- Live Review at Club Nokia on ARTISTdirect.com
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Image from Discogs