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Queens of the Stone Age - Era Vulgaris

2007-07-18 16:56
Era Vulgaris (Latin translation: ‘the common era’) sees them return to their unique brand of raw, raunchy rock and roll that spoke to a generation of listeners that have grown tired of the same old rehashed four chord commercial ‘rock’ CRAP that is so generously endorsed by the MTV Society of Beautiful People. Album starter “Turnin’ on the Screw” says it all. Lines like “the world is round, my square don’t fit at all’, ‘you ain’t a has been if you never was’, and ‘fear of failure’s all you’ve started, the jury’s in, VERDICT: -Retarde”. Ouch.

“Sick, Sick, Sick”, the first single off the album, is a shot of adrenaline to the heart. Or crotch. It’s got all the power and drive of a dozen American muscle cars at 11000rpm, yet the delicious sex appeal of honey dripping from… use your imagination.

Era Vulgaris is filled with what seems to be pure experimentation, but as a fellow fan pointed out, it’s actually pure musical expression. To clarify, it’s not a blind foray into ‘let’s see what happens’. It’s calculated, and just proves the talent, boldness and open-mindedness of the band. Just listen to tracks like “3’s and 7’s”, “Battery Acid” and especially “River in the Road”. Takes some getting used to, right? That’s because these sorts of songs haven’t existed before now. And yet, they resonate, enticing you to keep listening.

Bold statement of the month: Rock needs Era Vulgaris to exist. Rock needs QOTSA to exist. If not, who else will step up and inject life into this dull and stale genre? Lucky for us then, that ‘necessary’ could sound this good.

- Loedi van Renen

Some artists try their best to transcend stereotyping and genre. Ginger Elvis (Homme), well hell, he just couldn’t care less. I guess that’s what happens when you consume copious amounts of narcotics, hang out in the desert and create free, unfettered creative musical explorations. Now add a healthy dose of wit, sarcasm and an ‘I do things on strings you wish you could do in bed’ attitude, and you might have half an idea what these Queens are on about.

What to read next: Kalahari

goda 2007/07/16 6:19 PM
Great review I don't know. Type type type. There's nothing more to say. Great review.
george 2007/07/17 11:55 AM
Long live QOTSA!!!!!! Buy it - You have been told!!!
qotsa fan 2007/07/21 8:11 AM
'my generation's for sale' As stated before, this is new, 'experimental' and refreshing. Dont really see the 'experimental' part but anyways, its a damn fine album - just listen to the words on i'm designer. Fav tracks are river in the road, make it wit chu, and fun machine. buy this and decide for yourself. I'd say 5 stars. Also worthwile to check out for UNKLE's new album 'war stories' (Josh Homme appears on one of the tracks), and look out for the track 'era vulgaris' by QOTSA (not on this album), it guest stars trent reznor (nine inch nails) on vocals.
Sidney meyer 2007/07/24 5:41 PM
Blown Away It haven't liked, no loved, every song on an album I've bought since I was 17. That was Sgt Pepper and that makes me 57. This is music for a new generation and anyone who refuses to age.
Redl 2007/08/21 10:45 AM
QOTSA rule With the steady decline in musical talent that is now evident it is great to have bands like QOTSA who still know how to make music wirth listening!
paul 2007/09/01 12:20 AM
at least someone gets it thanks for a great review... I am so sick of the trash rock music that is coming out now - and I can't believe most critics have written this album off. I totally agree - Rock music needs Era Vulgaris.
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