Queens of the Stone Age: Era Vulgaris


Just when it seemed Josh Homme had tossed all his good serving band-members and next desert acid-trip musical off at a self serve somewhere between Gila Bend and Palm Springs, along comes Era Vulgaris – the strongest album to date in Homme’s desert stoner rock catalog.  This, his fifth Queens album holds a yellow sign that reads- “repetitive chords and riffs.”  However, if "repeat" sounds this good, than why can’t every band pull it off like Queens of the Stonge Age?  Good question.

The opener “Turnin’ on the Screw,” with its jagged chords leads into the dirty punk anthem of “Sick, Sick, Sick.” Homme later sings of “going home to jerk off” in a post-punk jittery delivery before unleashing into a hypnotic chorus on “I’m Designer.”  “Misfit Love” is industrial heavy where Homme’s desert drawl carries the weight and  “3’s & 7’s” rumbles in true garage rock fashion. Queens part-timer Mark Lanegan’s lends his smooth pipes to the funky "Make It Wit Chu" and the riveting "River in the Road."

Where most bands seem to hit a creative dead end after five albums, Era Vulgaris marks a creative high-point for Homme. Era Vulgaris isn’t thinking man’s rock ala Wilco or Radiohead, but it’s a ton of bad-ass riffs and melodies that makes for the perfect summer soundtrack.

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