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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Chloe Everson
Chloe Everson
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Hi! My name is Chloe and I am a fourth-year senior here at NMU. I am a Public Relations major and have always enjoyed sports. I love being outdoors, shopping, and drinking coffee at all hours of the...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Opinion — Its okay to outgrow your college friends
Opinion — It's okay to outgrow your college friends
Megan PoeApril 12, 2024

‘Vultures’ mixes the best of the best

In a 2005 interview with Mojo magazine, Dave Grohl (Nirvana, The Foo Fighters) made a bold statement when he announced he would soon be combining with John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin) and Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age). While other rock fans became instantly intrigued, I was nervous. What frightened me was that it involved Jones, one of the greatest rock bassists of all time. Thankfully, the Nov. 17 release of Them Crooked Vultures debut album shows the world one thing, plain and simple: this is how rock ‘n’ roll should be done.

The first track on the album, “No One Loves Me & Neither Do I” sounds like an enhanced version of your parent’s old rock records. The contrast of Homme’s heavy old school guitar hooks and modern alternative vocals creates a new version of the classic rock sound (Think Cream meets “Like a Stone”). The baseline is completely Jones style. It’s noticeable; while other bass players may be mere accessories who stand in the back, the line in this song is instantly recognizable. Then there’s Grohl, whose drumming is normally quite hyperactive. On this track he slows it down a bit but doesn’t give any leeway, drumming with dedication like he’s marching on a football field during halftime. Just when I thought true rock ‘n’ roll had taken its last breath, this song restored my faith.

These themes reoccur through the album separately. Some songs sound like Zeppelin reincarnated, most notably the song “Reptiles” with the same modge podge of sound the band became so fond of in their later years. Other tracks literally are Zeppelin. The song “Elephant” seems to take every trippy guitar riff from the early years and throw them together. A long instrumental intro will leave you impressed, but pondering if you’ve discovered a way to travel back to 1973 or had some LSD slipped into your drink. While Homme’s wobbling vocals are nothing compared to Robert Plant (although considerably creepier) his guitar style is impressive, challenging Page. Some tracks are purely alternative rock, Grohl and Homme’s specialty, with some added heavy sounds, like “Mind Eraser, No Chaser.” No matter which it may be, it’s done well.

The album mainly stays true to one huge rule: if you’re going to rip off a band, it should only be your own. Of course, as with every album there are disappointments. Some songs are so psychedelic that only the sixties could handle them. “Warsaw or the First Breath You Take After You Give Up” sounds like The Doors, and anyone trying to replicate Morrison is bound to fail miserably. “Interlude with Ludes” sounds like a circus act, which references “LSD and bloody rags.” Sometimes, in an effort to sound like the type of rock Jones created and Grohl and Homme listened to in their footie pajamas, they get a little out of hand.

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In order to like this album, you must like all three bands. If you are solely a Zeppelin fan, the fresh alternative twist will kill you. If you’re strictly a Foo Fighter’s fan, you will hate Grohl’s component of strictly drums. As for Queens of the Stone Age fans, Hommes sound is considerably less eerie on this album. But each artist brings something to the table, and for the most part it creates an album that true classic rock fans have been waiting for.

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