Album of the Week: Queens of the Stone Age – Villains

Villains by Queens of the Stone Age

Villains by Queens of the Stone Age

Josh Homme has been feeling the urge to dance. The prime member of Queens of the Stone Age turned up the rhythms and changed things up a bit to give that sensation. Their seventh album Villains, due to be released Aug 25 by Matador Records, is a testament to the band’s sonic progression and fearless way of trying new techniques. It’s an album that has each song capturing a distinct groove. There’s also an abundance of distorted riffs that bring the noise.

The main ingredient for Villains’ danceable style comes from Mark Ronson handling the producing, so there’s more of a new wave vibe with this album. Homme leads an arsenal of fast-paced guitars with Troy Van Leeuwen and Dean Fertita joining the fray. Ferita also shows off his incredible synth skills on numerous tracks. Bassist Michael Shuman teams up with one of the best drummers on the planet in Jon Theodore to create rhythms that are responsible for the album’s particular vibe.

By being one of the most consistent bands out there, Queens of the Stone Age would probably get a pass even if they released a dud of an album, but the funny thing is that it hasn’t happened yet. From what used to be an ever-changing lineup, the band has found stability over the past few years that has paid off musically. Villains is another chapter in a storied career for a band that built the bridge from ‘90s alternative rock to the modern sound that a bunch of bands have adopted today. Let’s take a closer look at this and more with my top tracks off of the Album of the Week:

The lead single “The Way You Used to Do” is catchy and infectious, an excellent example of the rhythmic rock throughout the entire album. “Head Like a Haunted House” shows off Theodore’s fantastic drumming talents with a rapid fire approach; the track is an absolute ripper that’s full of energy. With a sly aesthetic, “Domesticated Animals” has a haunting chorus and a consistent downbeat that holds everything together.

Queens of the Stone Age will be playing two already sold-out shows in the New England area, the first at the Agganis Arena in Boston Oct 21 and the second at the State Theatre in Portland, ME, the following night, but tickets are still available for Madison Square Garden in New York City Oct 24. While you’re at a show, grab a copy of Villains. It’ll get your feet moving and your body grooving.

Stream “The Way You Used to Do” via YouTube: youtube.com/watch?v=GvyNyFXHj4k

Pre-order Villains: store.qotsa.com/products/villains

Queens of the Stone Age web site: qotsa.com

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