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Jesse Hughes, front man for Eagles of Death Metal

Last night I went with some friends to see Eagles of Death Metal at The Paradise Rock Club. Right as we entered the club, we strolled down the hallway that leads to the stage, and lead singer Jesse Hughes swaggered past me, with quick strides, all cock-sure and slick, wearing tight jeans and a black t-shirt. He saw me notice him and shot me a rakish smile as he passed, but his eyes were hidden behind a pair of 70’s era cop sunglasses. He was very Rock and Roll. I had to giggle.

I love seeing shows at the Paradise, because it’s a cozy little venue that is perfect for medium-popularity bands. It’s not tiny, but it’s small enough that you are really close to the stage no matter where you are standing.

Eagles of Death Metal, just from their name alone, seem like a parody of a band. Despite their goofy name, they are neither Eagles nor Death Metal, but rather a caricature of southern whiskey-soaked biker rock. Like a little inside joke to those of us who are too young to remember or weren’t alive to experience the golden age of Rock and Roll but have heard about it from our parents. They don’t seem to take themselves, or their music seriously, and I think that is what makes them so completely lovable. Their often silly, 50s Elvis-ish Voodoo sound is replete with sexed-up lyrics and goofy hooks that will have you dancing like a fool.

The band consists of front man Jesse Hughes and drummer Joshua Homme, who is front man/song writer for Queens of the Stone Age. You can really hear Homme’s scuzzy, roiling style rumbling through the music, but those devilish undertones are kept in check by the silly choruses and the flirtatious charm of Hughes. You get the feeling from the music that the band is winking at you from behind their handlebar mustaches.

Homme, ever busy and always involved in multiple projects, was not on this tour, or at least at this show, but was replaced by a cute little blonde pixie girl of a drummer, who really rocked it out, smiling and laughing throughout the whole show. In addition, there was a second guitarist and a bass player, who would punctuate some of the songs with one or two well-timed words in his ridiculously low baritone.

I heard that on the last EofDM tour, Jesse came out on stage dressed in shorts and a gold lamé cape, so I was kind of expecting goofiness all around. However, on this tour, promoting their new album, Death by Sexy, he came out dressed in the tight rocker jeans and black t-shirt I had seen him wearing earlier. He was quite muscular and covered in tattoos, and apparently proud of his physique. Instead of being goofy and sleazy, I got the impression that he was going for sexy rock star on this tour. He kind of looked like a bit of a Brad Pitt with a giant handlebar mustache (hilarious but kind of handsome).

Hughes has this funny high voice, almost falsetto, but then he’ll grind out this deep Elvis-y rumble, so you know he’s rocknroll. The band was super energetic, and the crowd was gnashing and rollicking, thanks to the warm-up of the similarly styled opening band Rye Coalition.

The whole show was totally great. The Eagle’s music was solid and very confident overall, with the band hitting all the notes steady and hard. The crowd was very appreciative, and after each song, Hughes seemed to be more and more impressed with the response of the crowd, smiling unabashedly googly-eyed at everyone with his jaw dropped open in appreciation. Between each song he swore, “from the bottom of his heart” that Boston was the most Rock-N-Roll crowd ever. The crowd seemed to feed off this praise, which caused them to cheer even harder, which in turned seemed to heighten the energy and performance of the whole band. The excitement seemed to grow with each song, the applause and cheering getting louder and louder with each turn.

Between the songs Jesse Hughes kept shouting “Let’s hear it for the ladies!” and was walking around to the edge of the stage, reaching for the women’s hands to kiss them while everyone screamed and cheered, arms raised in the air. He had a very lover-boy ladies man charm, and the audience was eating it up.

I was glad that it was one of those fun shows where people aren’t too cool to clap or sing along or spin in circles. The whole club was literally rocking under the clapping and stomping of the packed house, and everyone was having a great time. It was super fun and I was sad when it had to end, although they really kicked some ass with Speaking in Tongues, their last song of the night. They brought the house down when it ended, bowing to the fans before leaving the stage.

Thank you Eagles of Death Metal, I haven’t rocked that hard in so long.

eodm_blog

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Currently listening to Death by Sexy by Eages of Death Metal

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Written by pocheco

April 25, 2006 at 1:38 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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