Raucous rawk - Stone-Age style

Justin Brake
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Concert review

Take the Salmon Festival atmosphere and throw it inside Mile One. Put Queens of the Stone Age on stage, feed people $2.50 beers, and make it general admission.

Two-and-a-half-buck beers while it lasted, anyhow. Apparently, Molson underestimated the drinking capacity of the 19-25 St. John's demographic because they ran out of beer before the end of the show.

Take the Salmon Festival atmosphere and throw it inside Mile One. Put Queens of the Stone Age on stage, feed people $2.50 beers, and make it general admission.

Two-and-a-half-buck beers while it lasted, anyhow. Apparently, Molson underestimated the drinking capacity of the 19-25 St. John's demographic because they ran out of beer before the end of the show.

Regardless, the result was a night with few rules, debauchery, 6,000 fans, and a band that lives the rockstar lifestyle like it's going out of style. There wasn't one indication last night's Queens of the Stone Age show at Mile One was a win-to-get-in deal.

In fact, the stadium, which was supposed to be filled to near-capacity, looked half -empty because everybody crammed to the front half to catch a glimpse of the Grammy-nominated band.

"Tonight is the last night of our entire Canadian tour," said seemingly enthusiastic Josh Homme, Queens lead singer. "This place is pretty f--kin' bad-ass. You guys must be f--kin' crazy for livin' here."

I paid the price for hanging out in the photographer's pit for the first few songs, too, dodging half-full (by the time they got to me) beer cups.

Frontman Homme led the band as they doled out legitimate reasons for this morning's doctor's notes that would read: "Cannot attend (work / school) due to temporary deafness."

Homme, the only remaining original band member, abetted the drunkenness and led the band through a bunch of material from its latest album, last year's "Era Vulgaris," including the Grammy-nominated song "Sick, Sick, Sick" and other fan-favourites like "Make It Wit Chu" and "The Fun Machine Took a Shit and Died."

A technical problem prompted the band to halt the show just long enough for Homme to lay into whoever was responsible for the blip. "Which one of these stupid motherf--kers just blew something?" he said, to a cheering audience.

The rest of his commentary is so expletive that if I published it my career would be over, but the crowd ate it up. Homme garnered enough support to re-start the song, so they did.

"Song for the Dead" was intense and executed to perfection, easily earning it highlight-of-the-night status. As the show went on, the mosh pit only grew rowdier and crazier, until they wrapped up the set, took about a 60-second break and returned for "3's and 7's" and their 2002 breakthrough hit "No One Knows" from "Songs For The Deaf."

I pity the Mile One cleanup crew, but even more the George Street bartenders.

Organizations: Queens of the Stone Age, Molson

Geographic location: St. John's, George Street

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  • Steve
    July 02, 2010 - 13:35

    How can all of you say that one drunken idiot ruined the entire show for everyone and the band. When was the last time any of you were at a rock concert and people weren't throwing things at the stage?? Anyone remember the molson concert 2 years ago when Billy Talent played? Someone threw a beer and Ben actually caught it? The crowd went wild and Ben was commended for putting off such a great show the next day. It's only because Josh is an arrogant jerk that everybody is hating on this guy for throwing a shoe. You don't stop mid-song to tell off a guy for throwing something. The show goes on. And that is definately not the first time he got beaned with someting on-stage. He needs to grow up and realize what he does for a living. It's part of the job. Get over yourself.

  • reid
    July 02, 2010 - 13:35

    this is what happens when any jerk can win tickets, not even knowing the band, instead of allowing fans to just buy tickets. it was brutal - i'm actually embarrased. but i also think that the b'ys could have sucked it up for the fans. yeah, it was dirty to have things thrown, but really. is that the worst the b'ys have experienced?

  • Heather
    July 02, 2010 - 13:32

    Yeah the concert was AMAZING. The band was awesome, songs were awesome, sound was awesome but then some idiot had to ruin the whole show. U forgot to add that they stormed offstage towards the end of the encore. They prob will never play here again and thats sad. They came to st john's with a pretty good impression but by the end of the evening all that changed thanks to some jerk who couldn't stop throwing stuff at the band. The real FANS Apologize & we hope they will play here again

  • Dave
    July 02, 2010 - 13:31

    In response to reid's comment that the b'ys could have sucked it up for the fans:

    From what I've heard, they put up with a good bit of stuff being tossed their way and even had to restart one of the songs in their main set. After all that, I'm surprised they even bothered to return for an encore.

    On top of that, they're artists up there with a bunch of expensive--and in some cases, irreplaceable-- guitars and amps, trying to express themselves. If people threw beer at me and my equipment, I *might* give them one chance to knock it off, but that would be it!

    I can't think of anyone who would want to stick around after playing their heart out for an hour and a half and getting thanked by having junk thrown at them!

  • Dave
    July 02, 2010 - 13:30

    What an embarrassment!

    As a Newfoundlander who had the privelege of seeing Queens of the Stone Age perform in Ottawa earlier this week, I was really excited (and envious) that a bunch of my buddies back home were going to get to see this amazing band perform on the Rock!

    What happens? A bunch of idiotic ske*ts and frat boys who don't even care about the band get amped up on cheap beer and ruin it for everyone else!

    I'm not one for censorship, red tape or over-regulating everything in our society, but it might be time to look at getting rid of these win-to-get-in affairs, because this seems to be the outcome every time.

    Anyway Molson, I hope you made lots of money off this promotion, because from what I've heard, you alienated a whole slew of music fans in St. John's last night!

  • Bob
    July 02, 2010 - 13:28

    You're right, Win-to-get-in is garbage. Should have been straight out tickets, like everywhere else. Especially for a band as good as QOTSA. Has Molson learned from past debacles, that the Win-to-get-in leads to drunken debauchery? Anyone remember Sum 41 in Mount Pearl ?

  • Me
    July 02, 2010 - 13:27

    Larster they are not 'their raucousness and use of expletives rather than the quality of the music.' someone drunkenly threw a shoe on stage and hit the lead singer, I'm sure you'd start swearing everywhere if it happened to you.

    Also their music is FAR from poor quality. The concert was actually amazin.

  • Mark
    July 02, 2010 - 13:26

    This is a total embarrassment for me as a Newfoundlander. I have been a HUGE fan of QOTSA for years, since Josh Hommes days in Kyuss. I was so excited and pumped to see them rock out in St. Johns. As stated before, the band was awesome, the sound was awesome, and the show was mind blowing!! They are one of the best rock bands out there today. Then some drunken idiots had to ruin it for us and for the band. The first thing someone threw at the band was a sneaker (Half way through Little Sister). They stopped the song and Josh had some very colorful commentary to the childish punk who threw the sneaker and they started the song over and continued to rock. When they came out for their encore, somebody threw something else at the Josh (Half way through No One Knows). The band just dropped their guitars and walked off stage. I could say some very colorful language right now to describe the feelings I have towards whoever did that. I guess I can only describe it as an act of stupid drunken childishness. Some people have no respect, no brains, and are nothing but pathetic losers who have no life, so they have to get their attention somehow.

    People who won their tickets by fluke and know nothing of the band came there just to get rowdy and drink cheap beer and make it bad for us the true fans who love the band. If the band came here and actually sold tickets, there wouldnt have been any of this in my opinion. Only people, like myself, that are willing to pay money to see an awesome band like Queens would have went. Nothing like this happened in the Pearl Jam shows.

    Im sorry Queens of the Stone Age for the actions of those bleep bleep bleepers. I hope you dont judge Newfoundlanders on the few morons that were there. Keep on rocking and please come back!!

  • Bob
    July 02, 2010 - 13:25

    It was a really good show. Great that St. John's can bring in that calibre of an act. Too bad some idiot ruined by throwing stuff at Josh Homme. Gives us a bad rep.

  • Lori
    July 02, 2010 - 13:25

    It is a well-known fact amongst true Queens fans that Josh Homme is a bully-killer who will put assholes in their place when there is just cause. And God love him for it. It's a pretty small thing to expect a crowd to respect the stage. Those guys work their asses off every show and always give an unbelievable performance. On top of that, unlike some other musicians, they are genuinely nice, down-to-earth people with a great sense of humour who don't take themselves that seriously. They do, however, take their music seriously and want nothing more than for everyone at their shows to have a great time. They play for the fans. (I've had the pleasure of seeing them a number of times on this tour and was actually lamenting the fact I couldn't get a ticket to the St. John's show. Not anymore. I feel so bad for the band - and the true Queens fans - that it hurts.)

    I've seen a lot of apologizing here and on other sites and to those people (who were not even responsible for what happened), you've shown a lot of class. To the other people (who only care about drinking lots of beer and winning free stuff), sorry, but no one really cares what you think.

    I wouldn't expect a return visit from this band.

  • Krista
    July 02, 2010 - 13:24

    In my opinion I think Mark should have been giving the job to write the article about the concert. Well done!
    I was embarassed by the behaviour of the drunken morons who ruined the show for those that actually wanted to see the bands. There were far too many people there who were just there to drink cheap beer.... myself, i don't like beer, just wanted to see a rockin' concert! My boyfriend... being irish...drank cases upon cases of molson to get tickets but had to give up on it because it looked like there was no hope in hell for us to get tickets. We finally got a pass two days before the concert from one of our good friends in the Novaks. I would have rather paid to see the Queens of the Stone Age with a crowd that were there to actually listen to the band than to witness such disgusting behaviour. Way to make a name for Newfoundlanders!!!! I would love to see them in concert again... but it probably won't be here...

  • Robert
    July 02, 2010 - 13:24

    I have to agree with Mark and Dave; the crowd's behavior was an embarrassment to us fans who just wanted to watch a great show. Now the band probably thinks Newfoundland is full of drunken idiots and we'll never see them again. If this were a normal paying concert there'd be more real fans and less inebriated, belligerent riff raff who didn't even know or care what band was playing.

    And to larster, just shut up.

  • larster
    July 02, 2010 - 13:24

    Sounds like a wild time. Too bad modern music and acts like this are known for their raucousness and use of expletives rather than the quality of the music. 'Nuff said!!

  • Matt
    July 02, 2010 - 13:22

    Are you suggesting to do away with win to get in? Are you serious? Free tickets from drinking beer. I..I'm speechless, whoever thinks this way is wrong. Sick band, for free, cheep beer, some nonsense, sounds good to me. Dont cry casue some band might not like NL now.

  • Kim
    July 02, 2010 - 13:22

    They didn't even play The Fun Machine Took a S.hit and Died what is this guy talking about

  • Robert
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Matt: how many shoes do you have right now? Haha. Anyway, considering I was one of those not lucky enough to win a ticket and had to buy one from someone not interested in going to the concert (or at least needing the money more), I am in favour of dropping the win-to-get-in shows. If you want to see the band bad bad enough you will pay, and not to sound elitist, but general admission lets too many outsiders in starting trouble because they don't care about the show. QOTSA is a major band we were privileged to have here, and I can't help but feel some (not all) of the audience didn't show the proper respect.

  • Queens
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Actually, the technical problem was a shoe thrown by someone in the drunken crowd which hit Josh Homme mid song and he halted to address the idiot that threw it. Great show by the band but not the type of show to see them, or anybody, at, it was more of a beerfest than a concert. Really doesn't do much for St. John's image as a music-friendly city.

  • Bob
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    Not sure if you know what you're talking about. Josh Homme is one of the best front men out there. Everyone is out for a good time, including the band. Not sure you're going to get quality of music like that here all the time. Too bad people go overboard with it.

  • Bobby
    July 02, 2010 - 13:20

    They show was amazing...I didnt notice they ran out of beer, I had my fill!

  • Mark
    July 02, 2010 - 13:14

    Hey thanks Krista!

    Newfoundlanders are known for their generosity, friendliness, and overall good heartedness. It just crushed my heart and many of my friends hearts too, to see what happened. I am so disgusted that the show will always be tarnished by the stupidly of brainless drunk punks.

    But on a positive note, they did ROCK THE ROCK!! The band sounded and played sooo awesome. And my girlfriend is in love with Josh Homme, but I am totally OK with that! Cause I am too... :)

  • Bob
    July 02, 2010 - 13:13

    Yeah you're 100% right, some idiots ruined it for everybody else. Its funny, I seen the Halifax show Tuesday night, and there was none of that foolishness. IT was much better because of it, and at a venue not near as good as Mile One.

  • Pierre
    July 02, 2010 - 13:13

    These win to get in shows are absolute nonsense! You end up with a bad mix of hillbillys who have no idea who the band is and loons who cant control their booze. Queens calling off the encore soon was pathetic. For such a tough rock band they should have stuck it out for the real fans. Boo! to Molson and Boo! to Queens!

  • larster
    July 02, 2010 - 13:12

    To whoever threw the shoe/sneaker: Too bad your aim was off!!!

  • CJ
    July 02, 2010 - 13:11

    if molson hadn't paid to get QOSTA to newfoundland, they wouldn't have come. so, take it or leave it.

    if i ever see one of those idiot moshers who were at the front i'm going to punch them in the face. good show, otherwise.

  • larster
    July 02, 2010 - 13:09

    Now, Robert, don't be rude.

    We'll never see them again ?--maybe that's a good thing.

  • JN
    July 02, 2010 - 13:09

    From the comments, looks like Justin Brake didn't report accurately - he glamourized the event and referred to just blew something? - while fact is that some in the crowd were unruly and sadly someone threw something. Also, according to all the other comments there was plenty of evidence that it was a win to get in event (lot of drinking and people who didn't care about the music). Misleading. I am all for coverage of concerts but not this fantasy stuff - that completely ignores or sugarcoats. If you don't write objective reviews, what is the point - you'd be better off writing fantasy or some other fiction.

  • Steve
    July 01, 2010 - 20:24

    How can all of you say that one drunken idiot ruined the entire show for everyone and the band. When was the last time any of you were at a rock concert and people weren't throwing things at the stage?? Anyone remember the molson concert 2 years ago when Billy Talent played? Someone threw a beer and Ben actually caught it? The crowd went wild and Ben was commended for putting off such a great show the next day. It's only because Josh is an arrogant jerk that everybody is hating on this guy for throwing a shoe. You don't stop mid-song to tell off a guy for throwing something. The show goes on. And that is definately not the first time he got beaned with someting on-stage. He needs to grow up and realize what he does for a living. It's part of the job. Get over yourself.

  • reid
    July 01, 2010 - 20:24

    this is what happens when any jerk can win tickets, not even knowing the band, instead of allowing fans to just buy tickets. it was brutal - i'm actually embarrased. but i also think that the b'ys could have sucked it up for the fans. yeah, it was dirty to have things thrown, but really. is that the worst the b'ys have experienced?

  • Heather
    July 01, 2010 - 20:21

    Yeah the concert was AMAZING. The band was awesome, songs were awesome, sound was awesome but then some idiot had to ruin the whole show. U forgot to add that they stormed offstage towards the end of the encore. They prob will never play here again and thats sad. They came to st john's with a pretty good impression but by the end of the evening all that changed thanks to some jerk who couldn't stop throwing stuff at the band. The real FANS Apologize & we hope they will play here again

  • Dave
    July 01, 2010 - 20:20

    In response to reid's comment that the b'ys could have sucked it up for the fans:

    From what I've heard, they put up with a good bit of stuff being tossed their way and even had to restart one of the songs in their main set. After all that, I'm surprised they even bothered to return for an encore.

    On top of that, they're artists up there with a bunch of expensive--and in some cases, irreplaceable-- guitars and amps, trying to express themselves. If people threw beer at me and my equipment, I *might* give them one chance to knock it off, but that would be it!

    I can't think of anyone who would want to stick around after playing their heart out for an hour and a half and getting thanked by having junk thrown at them!

  • Dave
    July 01, 2010 - 20:18

    What an embarrassment!

    As a Newfoundlander who had the privelege of seeing Queens of the Stone Age perform in Ottawa earlier this week, I was really excited (and envious) that a bunch of my buddies back home were going to get to see this amazing band perform on the Rock!

    What happens? A bunch of idiotic ske*ts and frat boys who don't even care about the band get amped up on cheap beer and ruin it for everyone else!

    I'm not one for censorship, red tape or over-regulating everything in our society, but it might be time to look at getting rid of these win-to-get-in affairs, because this seems to be the outcome every time.

    Anyway Molson, I hope you made lots of money off this promotion, because from what I've heard, you alienated a whole slew of music fans in St. John's last night!

  • Bob
    July 01, 2010 - 20:16

    You're right, Win-to-get-in is garbage. Should have been straight out tickets, like everywhere else. Especially for a band as good as QOTSA. Has Molson learned from past debacles, that the Win-to-get-in leads to drunken debauchery? Anyone remember Sum 41 in Mount Pearl ?

  • Me
    July 01, 2010 - 20:15

    Larster they are not 'their raucousness and use of expletives rather than the quality of the music.' someone drunkenly threw a shoe on stage and hit the lead singer, I'm sure you'd start swearing everywhere if it happened to you.

    Also their music is FAR from poor quality. The concert was actually amazin.

  • Mark
    July 01, 2010 - 20:13

    This is a total embarrassment for me as a Newfoundlander. I have been a HUGE fan of QOTSA for years, since Josh Hommes days in Kyuss. I was so excited and pumped to see them rock out in St. Johns. As stated before, the band was awesome, the sound was awesome, and the show was mind blowing!! They are one of the best rock bands out there today. Then some drunken idiots had to ruin it for us and for the band. The first thing someone threw at the band was a sneaker (Half way through Little Sister). They stopped the song and Josh had some very colorful commentary to the childish punk who threw the sneaker and they started the song over and continued to rock. When they came out for their encore, somebody threw something else at the Josh (Half way through No One Knows). The band just dropped their guitars and walked off stage. I could say some very colorful language right now to describe the feelings I have towards whoever did that. I guess I can only describe it as an act of stupid drunken childishness. Some people have no respect, no brains, and are nothing but pathetic losers who have no life, so they have to get their attention somehow.

    People who won their tickets by fluke and know nothing of the band came there just to get rowdy and drink cheap beer and make it bad for us the true fans who love the band. If the band came here and actually sold tickets, there wouldnt have been any of this in my opinion. Only people, like myself, that are willing to pay money to see an awesome band like Queens would have went. Nothing like this happened in the Pearl Jam shows.

    Im sorry Queens of the Stone Age for the actions of those bleep bleep bleepers. I hope you dont judge Newfoundlanders on the few morons that were there. Keep on rocking and please come back!!

  • Bob
    July 01, 2010 - 20:11

    It was a really good show. Great that St. John's can bring in that calibre of an act. Too bad some idiot ruined by throwing stuff at Josh Homme. Gives us a bad rep.

  • Lori
    July 01, 2010 - 20:11

    It is a well-known fact amongst true Queens fans that Josh Homme is a bully-killer who will put assholes in their place when there is just cause. And God love him for it. It's a pretty small thing to expect a crowd to respect the stage. Those guys work their asses off every show and always give an unbelievable performance. On top of that, unlike some other musicians, they are genuinely nice, down-to-earth people with a great sense of humour who don't take themselves that seriously. They do, however, take their music seriously and want nothing more than for everyone at their shows to have a great time. They play for the fans. (I've had the pleasure of seeing them a number of times on this tour and was actually lamenting the fact I couldn't get a ticket to the St. John's show. Not anymore. I feel so bad for the band - and the true Queens fans - that it hurts.)

    I've seen a lot of apologizing here and on other sites and to those people (who were not even responsible for what happened), you've shown a lot of class. To the other people (who only care about drinking lots of beer and winning free stuff), sorry, but no one really cares what you think.

    I wouldn't expect a return visit from this band.

  • Krista
    July 01, 2010 - 20:10

    In my opinion I think Mark should have been giving the job to write the article about the concert. Well done!
    I was embarassed by the behaviour of the drunken morons who ruined the show for those that actually wanted to see the bands. There were far too many people there who were just there to drink cheap beer.... myself, i don't like beer, just wanted to see a rockin' concert! My boyfriend... being irish...drank cases upon cases of molson to get tickets but had to give up on it because it looked like there was no hope in hell for us to get tickets. We finally got a pass two days before the concert from one of our good friends in the Novaks. I would have rather paid to see the Queens of the Stone Age with a crowd that were there to actually listen to the band than to witness such disgusting behaviour. Way to make a name for Newfoundlanders!!!! I would love to see them in concert again... but it probably won't be here...

  • Robert
    July 01, 2010 - 20:09

    I have to agree with Mark and Dave; the crowd's behavior was an embarrassment to us fans who just wanted to watch a great show. Now the band probably thinks Newfoundland is full of drunken idiots and we'll never see them again. If this were a normal paying concert there'd be more real fans and less inebriated, belligerent riff raff who didn't even know or care what band was playing.

    And to larster, just shut up.

  • larster
    July 01, 2010 - 20:09

    Sounds like a wild time. Too bad modern music and acts like this are known for their raucousness and use of expletives rather than the quality of the music. 'Nuff said!!

  • Matt
    July 01, 2010 - 20:06

    Are you suggesting to do away with win to get in? Are you serious? Free tickets from drinking beer. I..I'm speechless, whoever thinks this way is wrong. Sick band, for free, cheep beer, some nonsense, sounds good to me. Dont cry casue some band might not like NL now.

  • Kim
    July 01, 2010 - 20:06

    They didn't even play The Fun Machine Took a S.hit and Died what is this guy talking about

  • Robert
    July 01, 2010 - 20:03

    Matt: how many shoes do you have right now? Haha. Anyway, considering I was one of those not lucky enough to win a ticket and had to buy one from someone not interested in going to the concert (or at least needing the money more), I am in favour of dropping the win-to-get-in shows. If you want to see the band bad bad enough you will pay, and not to sound elitist, but general admission lets too many outsiders in starting trouble because they don't care about the show. QOTSA is a major band we were privileged to have here, and I can't help but feel some (not all) of the audience didn't show the proper respect.

  • Queens
    July 01, 2010 - 20:02

    Actually, the technical problem was a shoe thrown by someone in the drunken crowd which hit Josh Homme mid song and he halted to address the idiot that threw it. Great show by the band but not the type of show to see them, or anybody, at, it was more of a beerfest than a concert. Really doesn't do much for St. John's image as a music-friendly city.

  • Bob
    July 01, 2010 - 20:02

    Not sure if you know what you're talking about. Josh Homme is one of the best front men out there. Everyone is out for a good time, including the band. Not sure you're going to get quality of music like that here all the time. Too bad people go overboard with it.

  • Bobby
    July 01, 2010 - 20:02

    They show was amazing...I didnt notice they ran out of beer, I had my fill!

  • Mark
    July 01, 2010 - 19:53

    Hey thanks Krista!

    Newfoundlanders are known for their generosity, friendliness, and overall good heartedness. It just crushed my heart and many of my friends hearts too, to see what happened. I am so disgusted that the show will always be tarnished by the stupidly of brainless drunk punks.

    But on a positive note, they did ROCK THE ROCK!! The band sounded and played sooo awesome. And my girlfriend is in love with Josh Homme, but I am totally OK with that! Cause I am too... :)

  • Bob
    July 01, 2010 - 19:52

    Yeah you're 100% right, some idiots ruined it for everybody else. Its funny, I seen the Halifax show Tuesday night, and there was none of that foolishness. IT was much better because of it, and at a venue not near as good as Mile One.

  • Pierre
    July 01, 2010 - 19:50

    These win to get in shows are absolute nonsense! You end up with a bad mix of hillbillys who have no idea who the band is and loons who cant control their booze. Queens calling off the encore soon was pathetic. For such a tough rock band they should have stuck it out for the real fans. Boo! to Molson and Boo! to Queens!

  • larster
    July 01, 2010 - 19:49

    To whoever threw the shoe/sneaker: Too bad your aim was off!!!

  • CJ
    July 01, 2010 - 19:47

    if molson hadn't paid to get QOSTA to newfoundland, they wouldn't have come. so, take it or leave it.

    if i ever see one of those idiot moshers who were at the front i'm going to punch them in the face. good show, otherwise.

  • larster
    July 01, 2010 - 19:44

    Now, Robert, don't be rude.

    We'll never see them again ?--maybe that's a good thing.

  • JN
    July 01, 2010 - 19:44

    From the comments, looks like Justin Brake didn't report accurately - he glamourized the event and referred to just blew something? - while fact is that some in the crowd were unruly and sadly someone threw something. Also, according to all the other comments there was plenty of evidence that it was a win to get in event (lot of drinking and people who didn't care about the music). Misleading. I am all for coverage of concerts but not this fantasy stuff - that completely ignores or sugarcoats. If you don't write objective reviews, what is the point - you'd be better off writing fantasy or some other fiction.