Where were we? We stood about ten feet from Josh Homme on stage. The sound was blaring from the speakers, directly into our skulls. The crowd? Giant circles paced furiously, moshing directly in front of center stage; women flashed the band from shoulder tops; the rest were swaying, rocking and being lulled into a musical comma. To say that the Queens of the Stone Age absolutely killed the show would be an understatement.
QOTSA played their entire first album front to back, in honor of being back in Seattle again (QOTSA’s first show was in Seattle at the OK Hotel, now defunct, way back in 1997). The album features deep bass lines, wicked melodies, and impeccable drumming to provide for a dark, entrancing, and all enrapturing sound. Short story is that this record sounds beautiful LOUD. The concert was last week at the Showbox. After playing this album front to back, the group took requests for another forty-five minutes. Mind-numbing. I wish you were there.
But who is QOTSA, you ask? Hard to say. The group is the drugged up, psychedelic reincarnation of “Kyuss.” QOTSA is one of the few bands that plays for the benefit of QOTSA as a whole and not necessarily the band members within. As a result, the band’s lineup is constantly changing. David Grohl sometimes stops by occasionally to kill the drum kit.
The band released their self-titled debut, Queens of the Stone Age (1998) on Loose Groove records, which was recorded with Homme handling both guitar- and bass guitar-playing duties (though basswork is credited to Homme’s alter-ego, Carlo Von Sexron), Alfredo Hernández on the drums, and included several other instrumental and vocal contributions by Chris Goss and Hutch. Today, Josh Homme, the founder of the Queens is the only remaining original member.
update: As it turns out, this album has been moved from the obscurity back into record stores near you; the reissue of this classic album was released in March. The download below is for the Original disc which was damn nearly impossible to find. If the group wants us to remove the link, let us know. D/L, as always, is for evaluative purposes only. The re-issue (purchase link below) is re-mastered and features three bonus tracks.
VERDICT: MUST HAVE