Queens of the Stone Age
Queens of the Stone Age


4.0
excellent

Review

by Alex K. USER (5 Reviews)
July 24th, 2012 | 13 replies | 1,318 views


Release Date: 1998 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "I had an image in my head from an old Warner Bros cartoon of big, staggering robots. And that, I suppose, was my idea for Queens of the Stone Age: broken, drunk robots." - Josh Homme

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

Queens of the Stone Age’s debut record is not the mammoth rock ‘n’ roll beast that Songs for the Deaf is, it’s not the “just weird enough to get your attention” masterpiece that Rated R is, and it’s not the dark, twisted, over-produced (but still fantastic) mess that Lullabies to Paralyze is. What it is, though, is the first record that touched on Josh Homme’s love of stripped down and oddly hooked pop songs. This collection of songs is heavy, but poppy. It’s weird and unpredictable, but straightforward. It’s subdued and calculated, while remaining furiously groovy. It’s Queens of the Stone Age, and there’s nothing quite like it.

“So blow our mind and make it lazy
Those long long days with no escaping
I hold the wheel to let it go
Don't wanna stop, don't wanna know
If it gets you down, well just don't blame me”

The repetition of the records’ style would be too much to bear if not for Queens’ sleezed up, drugged out, and confident performance of the tracks. Alfredo Hernández isn’t as bombastic a drummer as Dave Grohl or Joey Castillo, but his more humble presence works for the personality of Queens’ debut. Josh Homme takes up guitar, vocal, bass, piano, and keyboard duties on this album, and he does each of these jobs with skill. The not-too-intrusive drum lines and plodding bass grooves support the fuzzy guitar attack, and Homme’s smooth high-range vocal melodies are thrown into the middle of it all. Verses pull the songs along just long enough for the choruses to give the listener a break. Rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat.

“Cozied up to the toilet
Face stuck to the floor
I met expectations
That I was tryin' to ignore”

The heart of the record comes through in the first three songs, and then continues to thump along right up until the album closer (the ridiculous “I Was A Teenage Handmodel.”) Packed in between the heavy hitters are several songs to tug the listening experience along at a manic and paranoid pace. Songs like “Walkin’ on the Sidewalks,” “I Would Know,” and most notably “You Can’t Quit Me Baby,” seem to exist solely for Homme to test his audience with repetition and insanity. It’s a very comedic kind of experimentation that really helps with fleshing out the personality of the band. The bands’ follow-up record, Rated R, delved further down that particular rabbit hole.

In Homme’s search for creative ground and identity, he wrote a handful of songs that still stand as some of Queens’ most effective tracks. “If Only,” “How To Handle A Rope,” and “Mexicola” in particular really solidify what would later become known as Josh’s unmistakable style. The instrumentals lean towards sonically heavy, but the vocal melodies are smooth, not abrasive and aggressive. That’s a key element to the sound and success of QotSA in my mind; the balance of almost offensively repetitive rhythm guitar and Homme’s airy, confident, almost sleazy vocals. He’s cool, he writes cool songs. He knows it, and so do we. Queens of the Stone Age’s debut is a classic.


user ratings (1077)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
Timeizillmatic9 (4.5)
The often overlooked, classic debut of one of modern rock's most important bands...

Ali CONTRIBUTOR (3.5)
Often forgotten due to its relative obscurity, this debut represents the transition point from Kyuss...

Andrew H. EMERITUS (4)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Alex445
July 24th 2012



149 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Really couldn't decide what to rate this one. I could give it a 5 with a clear conscious, but at the same time I had to leave room for Rated R and Songs for the Dead to have higher scores, since I do find them to be "better" records.

evilford
July 24th 2012



21045 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ME JUST HAPPY ROBOT

Digging: Demilich - 20th Adversary of Emptiness

MrElmo
July 24th 2012



1950 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UIV2zvhre5U pos'd

bloc
July 24th 2012



34667 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

One of my all time favourite bands and album.

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

Alex445
July 24th 2012



149 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thanks a lot for the pos. Thanks for reading, I hope this review inspires a couple people to throw this album on, it's damn good.

evilford
July 24th 2012



21045 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I Was A Teenage Hand Model is so good

jefflebowski
July 24th 2012



7346 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

if only, mexicola and regular john is some of the best driving music ever

really good review too

Digging: Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
July 25th 2012



3323 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

you forgot Avon too, Jeff. Great review man. pos.
This whole album works so well.

Digging: Karma To Burn - Arch Stanton

Detritivore
July 27th 2012



267 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Excellent review - short and informative.

Maybe this is not their best effort in terms of popularity, but here can be found their catchiest songs ever made.

oWhoadYo
July 27th 2012



1224 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is their best album.

Alex445
July 29th 2012



149 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'm beginning to come around to that opinion, haha.

tarkus
July 29th 2012



5560 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

rated r dudes
barely edges over this


oWhoadYo
July 29th 2012



1224 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've never quite saw what people love in Rated R so much. Sure it's great but it's not much compared to this and Songs for the deaf. Yet again not many albums can compare to those two.



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