Pros:3's & 7's, some other songs
Cons:not as good as Lullabies to Paralyze
The Bottom Line: good album, but not their best, and not for everyone
Era Vulgaris by Queens of the Stone Age was the album of 2007 for me, mostly because I dont really listen to the radio or watch MTV and thus am not with it. But I dont feel like Im missing much, and Era Vulgaris is pretty darn good, and may be QOTSAs second best album to date (Lullabies to Paralyze takes the cake on futher reflection). Lets take a looksie
3s & 7s is one of the best songs Ive ever heard. Its almost instantly catchy, fast paced, fun to sing along to, and features some great guitar riffs and a great bass line. From the yelping guitar lead in the beginning and the guitar solo to close the song, its good enough to please any rock fan, so at least download this song from iTunes or something. Slightly different versions of it are also in Rock Band and Guitar Hero III. And like most of QOTSAs singles, I think the band evades its common labeling as stoner rock.
The other really noteworthy song here is Sick, Sick, Sick and definitely sounds more stoner-ish. The meat of the song is one chord repeated over and over with different rhythms at times and the chorus is sung in falsetto. But if you hate repetitive songs and Josh Hommes falsetto, why are you listening to QOTSA anyway? Sick, Sick, Sick is a cool cryptic song that starts out quite simple with the one chord thing but gets more layered as the song goes on. The song also features Julian Casablancas from the Strokes on guitar playing some of the many nifty riffs in this song.
The rest of the album is quite good as well. Turning On The Screw has a cool riff throughout the song and has a do do do
ending even if it's a tad slow paced. Misfit Love takes a while to get started and again has cool riffs with really fuzzy guitar. River In The Road is quite epic sounding and has a lot of falsetto ahs in there. Run Pig Run features some frantic sounding riffs that get even more frantic during the chorus. Make It Wit Chu sounds too generic to be a QOTSA song but its not bad. In fact, the only bad song on this album is Im Designer. Its actually downright putrid with a terrible riff to open and I really dont even want to know what Homme is singing about when he opines Its just like diamonds
in sh*t. Yeah.
Apparently, this album was done with no input from the record label, so it's all them. But QOTSA doesnt change too much in their latest album and by now you should know what to expect from them. You either like their guitar work or you dont, but QOTSA is basically stoner sounding riffs repeated over and over with often falsetto vocals over that, and the vocals are often distorted as well. If youve just heard their singles like Little Sister or No One Knows, Im afraid the band is a lot more strange than that. 3s & 7s is a brilliant song anyone will enjoy and the rest is typical QOTSA fare, executed quite well mind you. But if youre not a fan of Josh Hommes twisted mind, then I dont think youll enjoy Era Vulgaris which really doesnt push the envelope or anything like that. Still, its a fun album and Im liking it, with the exception of Im Designer which I cant even force myself to listen to anymore. Ugh.
Still, while it has many good songs, it doesn't have nearly as many great songs as Lullabies to Paralzye did (In My Head, Little Sister, Long Slow Goodbye, Everybody Knows That You're Insane, Medication, Tangled Up In Plaid). So I give this effort 4 stars. I do think 3's & 7's is their best song ever though...
Turnin' On The Screw: 4 Stars
Sick, Sick, Sick: 5
Im Designer: 1
Into The Hollow: 4
Misfit Love: 5
Battery Acid: 3
Make It Wit Chu: 3
3's & 7's: 5
Suture Up Your Future: 4
River In The Road: 5
Run Pig Run: 5
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