This raw acoustic song uses vultures as a metaphor for death. Pop Pop Depression producer Josh Homme recalled to Mojo: "He's like, 'I've got one.' So he played acoustic and sang, and that's the take. We just built around it, but there's something to that ricketiness and out-oftune-ness. It's about putting the right frame around that picture. Vulture is the ultimate scarred-up opportunist, I love the sentiment."
Josh Homme has another vulture connection. He was also the frontman for the supergroup Them Crooked Vultures, which also included ex Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl, and former Led Zeppelin bassist, John Paul Jones. They released a self-titled album in 2009.
Vultures are renowned scavengers, often feeding on wounded, sick or dead bodies. They are consequently frequently used as a metaphor for those who prey on the weak or dying. Other artists who have recorded vulture-titled tunes include John Mayer, Gallows, Pendulum, Asking Alexandra and Labrinth.
Some vulture facts:
The Parasi community in Mumbai traditionally left their dead out to be picked to pieces by vultures.
Vultures can turn a dead body into a skeleton in under five hours.
Vultures are fairly unique in that they're able to eat carrion that has succumbed to the effects of decay and disease, a feat few stomachs in the animal kingdom can match.
When threatened, vultures vomit to lighten their body weight so they can escape more easily into flight.
Pete Townshend never had a #1 UK hit with The Who or as a solo artist, but he did produce and play on a song that hit the top spot there: "Something In The Air" by Thunderclap Newman, a group he assembled.