Sunday, September 13, 2009

Queens of the Stone Age - "I'm Designer" from the CD Era Vulgaris

QOTSA Era Vulgaris CD coverLike that redneck-chic T-shirt from the '70's said, the Queens of the Stone Age may not be perfect, but parts of their work are excellent.

Each of their albums rock solidly, yet each undeniably has a clunker or two. And even their most kickass tunes--like for Christ's sake the sick, sick raveup presented here--tend to have a chorus or a bridge or a refrain where the intensity is dimmed somewhat.

Excellent, but not perfect. On "I'm Designer," you can see that at 1:12 Josh Homme figured it was time to try and go ethereal with the chorus, but what you can't see is why.

What's with the choral dip in intensity? Homme created QOTSA with the express intent of not being Kyuss Part Two, of getting away from the Stoner Rock ghetto, but I am one to submit that regardless, part of Homme's job description is to rock for fuck's sake.

Note to Josh: For better or for worse, your band is just about the last one in the world that can be described simply as "hard rock." Homme writes in "I'm Designer" that "my generation's for sale," but another thing about his generation is that its bands have all headed for genrification. Everybody's got an emo band or their postrock revival thing or their sadcore project or their newgaze collective, but no-one fucking plays hard rock anymore.

Except QOTSA.

So stick with it, and focus on what makes you unique. I understand being diverse, Aerosmith when they championed '70's hard rock were diverse, Monster Magnet if you want a band more recent were diverse, but they never forgot what they were playing. Please skip the dreampop chorales, the cocktail blues, and the falsetto confessionals.

Stick to what's heavy, and your music will be that much the stronger for it.

Queens Of The Stone Age - Era Vulgaris - 03 - I'm Designer.mp3

207 kbps VBR mp3, up for six weeks (or more) (Right click and save as target)

File Under: Hard Rock

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