Jesse Hughes and Co. Tear The Picture House Down, Can You Dig it?

by Chris O’Reilly

eaglesSunday evening saw a rough and ready crowd of modern-day crotch rockers take over Edinburgh’s Picturehouse venue as Eagles of Death Metal played the final night of their UK tour.

The ever charismaticĀ front-man Jesse Hughes entered the stage almost at a point of frenzy. The crowd waited 20 minutes after the support act for the ‘Eagles’ to come on stage, and as support act Sweethead really were not all that spectacular, the collective patience was tested. However, upon Jesse’s entrance the crowd were immediately entranced. All he had to do was theatrically put on his rose-tinted aviators and the ticket-holders were putty in his hands.

The ‘Eagles’ misleading name may be off-putting, but if anything they are purely an homage to what was once fun and tongue-in-cheek about metal music in the 80’s, and their entrance to Scorpions hair-metal and Guitar Hero anthem “Rock You Like A Hurricane” gave a taster of just how much fun the night was going to be.

If you are the type who like to stand to the side of the stage during a live show and just enjoy the performance, then you would have been at a loss during opening track “Cherry Cola”. Brian O’Connor’s insanely powerful opening bass line could have immediately exploded the amps, but that didn’t discourage the fans. If anything it was an excuse for the crowd to break into a crowd-surfing free-for-all, with at least seven or eight guilty parties being dragged from the crowd before the end of “Cherry Cola”.

This just excited Hughes, and he taunted the crowd with his cheeky, soulful dance-moves and flirtatious interactions with the females in the crowd.

Other highlights of the performance included “Miss Alyssa” and stand out single “The Boy’s Bad News”, which almost caused a riot in the crowd. Also, some surprise covers popped up, including a bluegrass inspired “Stuck In The Middle With You” and hard-hitting encore “Brown Sugar”. Although they turned this Rolling Stones classic into a power-chord party that Tom Morillo would be proud of, Jesse’s lyric confusion was a little off-putting, but I don’t many of the drunken moshers noticed or cared.

In all the show was crotch-rock heaven, with a great mix of dancing, shimmying and moshing both on-stage and off to please the most pretentious of rock fans.