Queens of the Stone Age, ...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead

The roster of reckless rock-and-reefer rollers goes back to the days of cheap schwag and crude pipes made outta tinfoil; from Bloodrock to The Godz to Kyuss and Monster Magnet, tank-topped pothead freaks have operated under the radio radar for years. Queens of the Stone Age seem to have picked up right where their California buddies Masters of Reality left off in the mid-'90s, banging out chunky I-IV-V chord progressions, that bone-dry production aesthetic and quasi-spiritual death wish lyrics by the bong load. It's almost enough to make you wanna whip out your high school annual and sketch in their logo next to the photo of your algebra teacher.

The new album, Songs for the Deaf, features former Nirvana/current Foo Fighter Dave Grohl behind the drum kit for the first time in years. Sounds like he was having the time of his life. Shit is rock-solid. Too bad he had to jump ship and climb back on board with the Foos in preparation for their new tour and album. Fear not, former Danzig skin pounder Joey Castillo is filling in quite nicely. And now that the focus is back on leader/visionary Josh Homme, it's easier to fully appreciate where this guy is coming from. Homme is an amazing musician, an incredible guitarist who can take the simplest of chord progressions and turn them into magnificent orchestral arrangements. I'm sure it was great having Grohl around to reel in chicks, but this band has always been the brainchild of Homme and his partner Nick Oliveri. Once again, we have a chance to see what these guys are really made of.

This show should be wall-to-wall SRO with noise shredders ...Trail of Dead filling out the bill. Plan your day well. Wake, then bake. Bong hits for lunch. A hydro fatty at 4:20. Then look for our very own Heavy Metal Parking Lot in back of the Granada before the show. It's enough to take 20 years off your life.

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Jeff Liles