O2 Academy Bournemouth

Queens Of The Stone Age playing in Bournemouth is a big, no…a huge deal. Not only are they a huge band that have influenced myself and countless other bands/artists around today, but I am certain they will continue to influence rock music for years to come. With the band fresh off of a headline set at Glastonbury, the night was shaping up to be a cracker and not to be missed.

As it usually tends to be, the O2 is full up and ready to rock. I see a few familiar faces in the crowd and the energy in the room is very unique. The anticipation is there, but something seems different. It’s the feeling that everyone in the room shares that we are all about to witness something special. I know there’s a bit of hyperbole early on in this review, but I really mean it. I had the sense that everyone was there to have a good time and experience one of the world’s greatest rock bands.

They take the stage to a rapturous reception, Josh Homme with tequila bottle at the ready (doctor’s orders apparently!). The thunderous opening chord of “Regular John” pounds out from the speakers and lights the touch paper for the evening. A few more classics come our way with surprise appearances from “Do It Again”, “Better Living Through Chemistry” and “In The Fade”. I found myself turning to my friend and saying “oh man, I love that song” after every song! They weren’t there to promote anything, just to play a great set for their fans.

QOTSA are definitely giving it their all and the energy coming from the stage is one of love and appreciation for the crowd’s reaction to each song. We find out during the night that the band have been in the wars with Josh injuring himself and Troy (Van Leeuwen, guitarist) breaking his collar bone only two weeks ago. That’s a big show of commitment for a band who obviously aren’t 100% physically to still come to a small seaside town for a gig. I’ve known bands to cancel shows like that for a lot less.
Of course with any gig it’s not just the music that makes a show, but the performance plays a huge part. Josh and the band were there to have a good time and the way the O2 Academy’s bouncers were dealing with the crowd was getting to the front man. “We’re at a rock show, they’re not going to hurt each other” Josh exclaims whilst attempting to pass his half consumed bottle of tequila into the crowd. The man is a true rocker with his acts of defiance being aimed at the security staff (nearest point of authority I guess!) which brought equal amounts of cheers and laughs as he ridicules the over protective bouncers.

Overall this gig lived up to the hype and excitement surrounding it. Those that were there will always remember it and those who weren’t will forever curse themselves for not getting a ticket. A special night, with a special set list performed by the best QOTSA line up. They make up a big part of my musical vocabulary, been a big part of my life and I’m so proud to say I saw Queens Of The Stone Age play in my home town. It’ll take one hell of a show to top that in Bournemouth.

Set List
Regular John
Feel Good Hit of the Summer
3’s & 7’s
Do It Again
Better Living Through Chemistry
In the Fade
Hangin’ Tree
Misfit Love
Make It Wit Chu
Little Sister
Tangled Up in Plaid
First It Giveth
I Think I Lost My Headache
Go With the Flow

Burn the Witch
No One Knows
A Song for the Dead


Review by Tom Fisher.

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