All has been quiet in the land of QOTSA lately. While Josh Homme has been out touring with his buddies John Paul Jones and Dave Grohl in Them Crooked Vultures and Troy Van Leeuwen has been keeping busy with his sideband Sweethead, other than a re-issue of their seminal 'Rated R' album last year, nothing has surfaced from one of the best hard rock bands to walk the planet for some time. Now, with the first rumblings of a new album coming soon, Queens are finally re-releasing their long out of print, highly sought after self-titled debut album.
To start with, the quality of the songs is as high as you'd expect from QOTSA, and this album is packed tightly with tracks that are, to this day, still firm live favourites, such as Regular John, Avon, Give the Mule What He Wants and You Can't Quit Me Baby. It's no wonder the original album is so highly regarded among fans. Even songs that don't get so much exposure on the band's set lists, like You Would Know, If Only and Walkin' On Sidewalks show the trademark sound this band are renowned for. It shows that with Rated R, the band didn't so much evolve into a world class act, it's just that people started to take notice.
This reissue comes with three bonus songs from the era integrated into the track list. The Bronze is a fast, rock number with some great guitar playing on show. It is much more of a traditional rock song than a lot the more jam based tracks on the record. These Aren't the Droids You're Looking For, the first of two instrumentals, starts of as a messy jam before settling into a menacing walking bass line with dissonant scratchy guitar played over the top. The last of the bonus tracks, Spiders and Vinegaroons some may recognise as the menu music from the Over the Years and Through the Woods DVD package. About halfway through, it transforms from the sinister tribal vibe into something much more.insane.
Overall, the remastering job has beefed everything up a little from the original, but as with many remasters, it wasn't really necessary at all. This album seriously kicks ass. Roll on the new album.oh, and what about that Salt Mine DVD boys?