by Jimby Sisto
photo by Andreas Neumann
Call it alternative, call it metal, call it doom-stoner rock. Just don’t call it lazy. Queens of the Stone Age have set an incredibly high bar since Josh Homme assembled its cast of misfits in the California desert in 1996, while the band has gone on to cast a Goliath-sized shadow over any band that wishes to be in the same conversation as them. Homme and company continue to sail into wonky territory these days, fusing heavy metal guitars of old with heady future-focused production. Their new album Villains is easily one of the finest pieces of musicianship of this still-young year from a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-caliber band who are nothing less than the Albert Pujols of rock. Previous albums like Rated R and Songs For The Deaf are certifiable marks of master craft and pure ingenuity from a band that will punch you in the jaw, then make you laugh with a mouthful of blood.