Queens of the Stone Age have kept the buzz of stoner rock alive and brought it roaring into the mainstream with their catchy hooks and a diverse, ever-changing lineup that produces a unique sound with each album. The brainchild of former Kyuss singer/guitarist Josh Homme, the group formed from various projects that Homme participated in before settling on the lineup of Homme, drummer Alfredo Hernandez, bassist Nick Oliveri and guitarist/keyboardist Dave Catching for their self-titled debut album on Loosegroove in 1998. Queens signed with Interscope for Rated R in 2000, which received critical acclaim, and the ensuing tour earned them a large following. The buzz was bolstered when Dave Grohl, a long time vocal fan of the band, put his next Foo Fighters album on hold and joined the band for 2002's Songs For The Deaf, which brought them even more critical raves and was their biggest seller yet. Some side projects followed, and Homme and core member Oliveri parted ways before the release of Lullabies To Paralyze in 2005. Reportedly, there are plans for a new album soon, but Homme is keeping the new lineup and details secret for now.
QOTSA's hard rock hooks and devastating bass attack (at least while Nick Oliveri was a member) are enough to pin you to the back of your seat. But they're tempered by the classic 70's frontman tenor voice of Homme, often paired with lush harmonies. Rockin' hard + hummable = compelling, exciting and successful. Check out surprise hit "Go With The Flow." The band chugs along like a train threatening to run off the rails, while Homme offers up borderline hippie-dippy lyrics that would be headscratchers in any other context. Except that with that band behind him and the slight twinge of menace in Homme's voice, we're unsure whether his promise to "go with the flow" is promise or threat of some kind. Gotta watch those stoners!