Eagles of Death Metal at Islington Academy (21/08/12)

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This is probably one of my most highly anticipated gigs. I discovered the Eagles of Death Metal (EODM), via the drummer’s (Josh Homme) other band Queens of the Stone Age (QOSTA). After becoming duly obsessed with them I set my sights on anything Homme was involved in which led me to EODM. A band which doesn’t have a completely set in stone line up, with previous people such as Jack Black, Dave Grohl and Mark Lanegan filling in, playing in tours or playing on one of their three records.

EODM is the work mainly of Homme and his childhood friend Jesse “Boots Electric” Hughes, with Homme producing and drumming and Hughes mainly writing the songs and singing. The boot stomping riffs, unyielding drumming and lyrics of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll was enough to make me fall in love with them.

As such I was expecting a lot from this gig and they did not disappoint; in the small room that is the Islington Academy. Hughes and the rest of the band walk out over “Ladies Night” by Kool and the Gang. Which Hughes duly grooves along too as cheers rise from the crowd. Ladies being a big thing on Hughes mind at least, this is clear to see in his lyricism.

As the music dies down, the band all line up almost as if ready to charge into war, ripping into “Bad Dream Mama” as the band plays the intro Hughes greases his hair back, combs his moustache and places his aviators on his face very theatrically and then begins to sing as the crowd cheers and everyone begins to go crazy. Hughes owning the stage as he struts his stuff around like a horny cockerel exerting dominance.

Ripping through the best of their three albums and no new material appearing as Hughes has been occupied with his solo project; this tour seems to be just a way for the band to have fun and perhaps celebrate their bass player’s, Brian “Big Hands” O’Connor return to glory after having been treated for cancer in June 2010.

In between songs Hughes turns into a rock pastor, spouting thoughts about how crazy the crowd is and asking the crowd is they want to “see us shake our dicks, can you dig it?!” however cheesy this may sound it comes off genuine. With songs like “Don’t Speak” and “Heart on” it is clear see the influences of Little Richard, The Rolling Stones and AC/DC in their music. Taking the very best from each artist to produce these very energetic sexually charged songs that you can dance in your pants too till your heart’s content.

Hughes originally comes out for a mini encore on his own, to perform a great version of “Brown Sugar” at the behest of one audience member. Something which gives him an air of grace as he seems genuinely honoured to come out and play and entertain.

Then Hughes brings on the rest of the band along with Rat Scabbies (drummer of the Damned) to perform their most famous song “New Rose” Turning every audience member into a 14 year old intent on getting into their first mosh pit. EODM close things off with “I Only Want You” and extended version of “Speaking in Tongues” The perfect end to a perfect gig.

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