What: Queens of the Stone Age

Where: La Zona Rosa, Austin, TX

When: March 16

Thanks to Cee Lo's hugely disappointing no-show, Queens of the Stone Age's set at La Zona Rosa was undoubtedly the one to beat at SXSW, which made kicking up gravel while standing in line for nearly an hour worth the wait. So it was no surprise to see Jack White, Foo Fighters' Taylor Hawkins, Aziz Ansari and The Kills' Alison Mosshart and Jamie Hince, the future Mr. Kate Moss, looking on from the rarefied side of the stage. Mosshart couldn't stop dancing; she's no poseur, that girl.

Queens of the Stone Age; Credit: photo by Siran Babayan

Queens of the Stone Age; Credit: photo by Siran Babayan

With singer Josh Homme leading Them Crooked Vultures, and nearly four years since their last album, it was nice to see the guys reclaim their throne as one of the most underrated, riff-heavy bands to redefine metal. This was the first show of the group's tour celebrating the re-release of QTSA's 1998 eponymous debut. Though they threw in tracks off later records during the six-song encore, the band focused on playing their first LP track-by-track (including some rarely-heard live), from the woozy intro of “Regular John” to “Hispanic Impressions,” which Homme called their “shitty” (“I said shitty!”) rendition of Jimi Hendrix's “Manic Depression.”

Dude's got the gift of gab. When not smoking or taking a swig of vodka, Homme made funny cracks about there being too many black T-shirts in the crowd. “I had to shove a homing device up my ass just to find myself.” He's like the suave, cocky older brother you wish had protecting you in high school. He also pointed out that the band had “the only Mexican drummer (Garden's own Joey Castillo) in this whole fuckin' town.”

YouTube credit detroitwhat8

LA Weekly