Thursday, August 10, 2017
Queens of the Stoneage : "Villains"
I need these guys to quit fucking around and rock out. Is this possible ? The proliferation of kraut rock synths that open this album at first don't make this dream seem likely. But the do lock into 70s rock groove.It reminds me a little of Judas Priests disco moments...yes, Turbo lovers I am talking to you. That is not to say this is a bad thing, as I don't mind a touch of pop to what they do. "The Way You Used To Do" is not as tightly written and sounds like they are jamming on a White Stripes b-side. With their first three albums , you still could see how this descended from Kyuss. On this album that connection is still blurred. "Domesticated Animals" almost sounds more Nine Inch Nails than Queens of the Stoneage.
Its good to hear that four songs in this continues to be better than expected. There is more of a mid pacing to "Fortress" The vocals sit well in the groove of the song. There's a more frantic punk like energy to the attack of "Head Like A Haunted House". Synths be damned they still managed to find the groove for "Un-Reborn Again". It's on the angular side. The bass line is pretty solid on this one. This is not only far from metal, but not even aggressive enough to be referred to a hard rock, When they back off even further on "Hideaway". This is my least favorite song on the album as it's the kind of ball-less meandering that weighed "Like Clock Work Down".
They pick up the pace for "the Evil Has Landed". There is a more Led Zeppelin like boogie to this . In interviews Homme has called what they do a rock version of electronic music and I can hear that here. On the closing title track of sorts, it's clear years in the vocal booth have improved Homme's singing . He has always had a pleasant voice, but showcases his croon to a fuller extent on this one. It's more of a ballad than I had hoped for , but overall as a song grows on me. The first song got me enough to make me round this one up to a 9 and give it a shot on my iPod , it also made me miss their early work and want to hunt down those albums.