Music review: Queens of the Stone Age

Queens of the Stone Age are the thinking man/woman/child's dumb rock band, in that there is a fierce intelligence at play and often on display from charismatic, right-on frontman Josh Homme, aka the Ginger Elvis, as he helms his cool compadres on their tight but loose mission to rock our socks off.
Josh Homme and co got fired up and lit up the crowdJosh Homme and co got fired up and lit up the crowd
Josh Homme and co got fired up and lit up the crowd

Usher Hall, Edinburgh ****

But Homme has been drinking tonight so he’s just a little bit gushy with his eloquent come-together sentiments, high, he says. “on a living spree”. Sounds just about right for the moment, especially when so many others are (understandably) fixed on the doom. So much confusion, let’s drink! “Hopefully we’ll give you a night you’ll never remember,” says Homme.

Queens are a band to arouse primal instincts. They swing from the hip, and they were not going to let a distracting stage set of bendy LED poles get in their way. Powerhouse drummer Jon Theodore led the headlong surge of My God Is The Sun, delivered like a charge to the finish line, lighting a fire in the crowd who took up the pugnacious, thumping riff of No One Knows like it was a singalong chorus and were swept along by the sheer urgency of garage metal oldie Regular John.

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Not everything hit with such impact. They took their time on the slowburn seduction of Make It Wit Chu but there were other less potent, sludgier selections. Perhaps they were having too much fun but few grudged the occasional indulgent lapse from this party band with a conscience.