5 June 2013

Queens Of The Stone Age - ...Like Clockwork

This is an album I have been excited for/dreading for an awful long time. Queens of The Stone Age were formed out of the ashes of Kyuss and only Josh Homme from the original line up is left.  Members have came and went, so old faces have turned up to help with this effort, the last drummer was sacked half way through the recording and Elton John talked his way onto it saying that the one thing missing from this band was a real queen. Now for the last few albums the albums have not been anywhere near the quality of their first three records.  Also, this is the band's first record on Matador so sometimes when a band changes labels they up their game.  Have the band step up to the plate or have they given up the ghost?

First off I want to say this is quite possibly already going to be my album cover of the year - just look at it, it is an impossibly romantic and strange picture. I love stuff like this, artwork is as important as the actual content as well.  Musically this is a lot slower than anything else that has gone before, and it is also a sonic leap from what has come before. With only ten songs it is also one of the shortest QOTSA albums as well.  Now with this album there are 11 guest appearances on here.  As well as the aforementioned Sir Elton you also get Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, Alex Turner from the Artic Monkeys, Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters/Nirvana, Mark Lanegan of Screaming Trees and Nick Oliveri makes his first appearance on a QOTSA album since he was sacked back in 2004.  Sometimes having too many guests can detract from the overall picture that the band is trying to make.  However I am pleased to report that this is not the case here.

For the opening drum beat of "Keep Your Eyes Peeled" to the title track at the end, this is a smouldering sexy record that oozes such a presence that it will give shivers down the spin for weeks to come.  One of the tracks "If I Had A Tail" it might just be my new favourite song by QOTSA. It is a subtle number which starts off as a whisper and ends up as a glorious rhythm that take over to a surprising chorus. However the song that most people will be interested in will be "Fairweather Friend" - this is the one with Elton John, Trent Reznor, Oliveri and Mark Lanegan and it is a Jurassic track, it sounds like it has been here since the beginning of time and my deity is not a beautiful number. The only problem I have with this album is it has not got a gear change.  It has quality by the bucket loads; it has a soul and will no doubtfully grow in grace.  But there is no real change, it stays in a box which is something that QOTSA have never done before.  However this is just a small thing for me, overall the whole album is just a joy to hear and is another contender for album of the year.

9 out of ten - Almost perfect....Almost

You can purchase the album from Amazon here

You can visit the band's website here

You can visit the band's web store here

You can listen to the album of Spotify here

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