Queens of the Stone Age - Lullabies to Paralyze CD

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Special Features: Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top) guest vocals/guitars on "Burn the Witch".

Tracklisting:

  1. This Lullaby
  2. Medication
  3. Everybody Knows That You are Insane
  4. Tangled Up in Plaid
  5. Burn the Witch
  6. In My Head
  7. Little Sister
  8. I Never Came
  9. Someone's in the Wolf
  10. The Blood is Love
  11. Skin on Skin
  12. Broken Box
  13. "You've Got a Killer Scene There, Man..."
  14. Long Slow Goodbye

When we last left Queens' Josh Homme, the mainstream music scene finally noticed the band enough to deem it "buzzworthy." Subsequent sold-out tours, glossy music videos, and enough cocaine to kill a horse seemed to be the perfect ending for Homme, who toiled under the radar for far too long given his incredible talent. But Homme surprised us all by cleaning up shop in the interim -- namely the firing of resident nutcase, Nick Oliveri. His departure wasn't expected to alter the music of the band, but one expected his carefree attitude might have been missed to some degree.

I'm sorry Nick, but the band doesn't skip a beat with their latest,Lullabies to Paralyze. In fact, it's the perfect balance between the band's earlier ‘stoner-esque' jams, their Rated R-era headphone music, and the band's pop side that was a little hard to swallow on the successful Songs for the Deaf. Lullabies is one of the strongest albums of 2005 thus far, from beginning to end.

Mark Lanegan is back on the opening "This Lullaby." While others like Lanegan with QOTSA, I find his tracks akin to ginger on a plate of sushi... a palate cleanser that keeps you hungry for more Queens. As an opener, it leaves something to be desired. Fortunately, Homme kicks things into high gear right away with "Medication," a stomper if there ever was one. Similar to the semi-hit "Go with the Flow" fromSongs for the Deaf, "Medication" is an unrelenting track that features Homme's strengths: chunky and simple bar chords, melodic backing vocals, and pummeling '70s rock bridges.

The third track slows it down with the inevitable node to Oliveri, "Everybody Knows That You're Insane." It's a perfect song that balances the fast and slow with the hard and soft as only Homme can produce. By the sixth track "In My Head," the pop elements kick in with full force. A melodic chorus worthy of '70s AM rock radio leads into "Little Sister," which is quite possibly the finest modern rock hit since the mid-1990s.

Lullabies to Paralyze is quite a nice surprise amidst the silly bands parading themselves on modern rock radio. QOTSA might not be the underground's best kept secrets any longer, but with an album as strong as this, I hope everyone watching MTV takes notice on what music is really all about. - Jean-Pierre (TinyMixTapes.com)