We’ve got three new releases this week that we are featuring; the latest Queens of the Stone Age, a new one from
Thee Oh Sees and an amazing album from former Porcupine Tree front-man Steven Wilson. It was supposed to be four but unfortunately the new War on Drugs had a manufacturing hiccup, so won’t be in until next week.
Enough chit chat, let’s dig into the new stuff right now.
Queens Of The Stone Age – Villains
Villains is the first full album offering from Queens Of The Stone Age since 2013’s …Like Clockwork, which debuted at #2 on the Canadian album charts and has been certified Gold. Like the stunning artwork of returning illustrator Boneface, the sonic signatures of the lineup that took …Like Clockwork around the world and back are as unmistakable as ever, though coexisting with sufficient new twists to induce recurring double takes. As Homme himself puts it, “The most important aspect of making this record was redefining our sound, asking and answering the question ‘what do we sound like now?’ If you can’t make a great first record, you should just stop—but if you can make a great record but you keep making records and your sound doesn’t evolve, you become a parody of that original sound.”
Oh Sees – Orc
The newly shorn Oh Sees waste no time in racing headlong into nightmarish battle with the mighty Orc, and wouldn’t ya know it, they’ve clawed even farther up the ghastly peak last year’s A Weird Exits stormed so satisfyingly. The band is in tour-greased, anvil on a balance beam, gut-pleasingly heavy form, nimbly braining with equal dashes of abandon and menace on this fresh batch of bruisers and brooders, hypnotically stirred into to the cauldron of chaos you’ve come to expect from, ahem, Oh Sees. Fresh blood Paul Quattrone joins Dan Rincon to form a phalanx of interlocking double drums, alternately propelling and fleet footing shifting ground to pinion Dwyer’s cliff-face guitars to the boogie. Tim Hellman keeps it swinging like a battle-axe to the eyebrows. The tunes veer towards the violence of their live shows, with a few tasty swerves into other lanes… heavy to lush, groovy to stately… throughout it remains sinister in its swaggering skulk, manic in its fuzz-fried fugues… they hit all the sweet spots the heads foggily remember, and there’s plenty to sweat over if you just hopped into the sauna. Ew. More evil…more complex… more narcotic… more screech…. more blare…. more whisper… there’s even more Brigid. Less “Thee”, but more of everything else.
Steven Wilson – To The Bone
Fusing driving futurist rock and spectral electronics to elegiac hyper-space ambience and dizzying, squalling guitars, To The Bone is Steven Wilson’s hat-tip to the hugely ambitious progressive pop records of his youth. To The Bone is a gloriously dynamic modernist pop record as imagined by the UK’s biggest underground artist.
“My fifth record is in many ways inspired by the hugely ambitious progressive pop records that I loved in my youth (think Peter Gabriel’s So, Kate Bush’s Hounds of Love, Talk Talk’s Colour of Spring and Tears for Fears’ Seeds of Love).
Lyrically, the album’s eleven tracks veer from the paranoid chaos of the current era in which truth can apparently be a flexible notion, observations of the everyday lives of refugees, terrorists and religious fundamentalists, and a welcome shot of some of the most joyous wide-eyed escapism I’ve created in my career so far. Something for all the family!”– Steven Wilson