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Queens of the Stone Age: Era Vulgaris 

First of all, I love the title. In the age of South Park, Eminem, Def Comedy Jam, and movies like Saw and Hostel, it seems that Queens of the Stone Age are shaking a finger at our culture's seemingly unending hunger for crass and disturbing entertainment. As for the music, Queens of the Stone Age do not disappoint. With this fourth studio album, Queens bring back their signature robotic rhythms, interesting chord changes and eerie melodies. There were times while listening to this album that I was amazed at the complexity and depth of what I was hearing. Other times, I was equally amazed at its simplicity. The fifth track, "Misfit Love," which features an impossibly tight, unrelenting, syncopated riff that drives the entire song with an urgent and anxious energy. And I couldn't help but smile during tracks like "Make it Wit Chu" with its fun and upbeat funky grooves and singer Josh Homme crooning in a carefree falsetto: "I wanna make it / I wanna make it wit chu."

Unfortunately, if you weren't a Queens of the Stone Age fan before now, this album probably won't change your mind. They don't seem to be changing their format much. The flow of this album felt similar to previous albums, and the track "Into the Hollow," especially from a distance, sounds strikingly similar to their song "The Long Slow Goodbye" from the Songs for the Deaf album. But if you are a fan of what Queens of the Stone Age do, you'll be happy to find that they're getting better at it. This is definitely a band dedicated to keeping rock and roll new and interesting and you can see for yourself on July 27 at the Big Easy. Tickets are $23.

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