It is a hard rock supergroup consisting of none other than John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin bassist and multi-instrumentalist) on bass and keyboards, as well as 2 of Zeppelin’s most ingenious disciples: Dave Grohl (ex-Nirvana drummer, Foo Fighters singer and guitarist) on drums, and Josh Homme from Queens of the Stone Age on guitar and lead vocals.
The project was first announced back in 2005 but was only realized this year (2009) when the band formed and immediately started touring. Not long after, their masterpiece self-titled debut album was released (November 16, 2009 in the UK), debuting at #12 in the Billboard 200, and selling really well in most of Europe.
The first thing you notice while listening to the album is the sloppiness and the very rushed effect of the recording and mixing. You get the impression that the riffs were created while recording, and they were so eager to release the album that they forgot to properly mix it; yeah, the music is that spontaneous.
Now the obvious question that is raised everytime a supergroup album comes out is : Are they better than any of the bands they came from? Well according to Rolling Stone, TCV is “the second-best band John Paul Jones has ever been in!” but of course that’s not saying much, seeing as it’s the only band he’s ever been in besides Led Zeppelin. Besides, it would be absurd to suggest that ANY band is as good as Led Zeppelin. As for Nirvana, the styles are incomparable. The band that we can really compare this band to, besides Led Zeppelin, is Queens of the Stone Age, which should come as no surprise seeing as they have the same frontman. Except TCV have a much funkier bassist, so I’m inclined to go with TCV.
The Zeppelin influences are quite obvious in some of the songs, such as “Elephants”, “Caligulove”, and “Reptiles”. The funkiness (must-check for bassists) is there in “Scumbag Blues”, and the classical influences are there in “Spinning in Daffodils”.Other must-listen-to songs are “New Fang” which was released as a single and did pretty well on the charts, and the 2nd released single “Mind Eraser, No Chaser”.
So to sum things up, the album is basically a sum of the parts that made the band. It sounds pretty sloppy, but then again it’s very possible that’s intentional. It’s an in-you-face rock n’ roll record, and according to telegraph.co.uk “Them Crooked Vultures is, bar none, this season’s heavy-rock album of choice.”