Music » Spun

Queens of the Stone Age

…Like Clockwork - Matador



The first new release in six years from this iconic modern psyche- and metal-tinged blues-rock outfit is going to (almost) disappoint a fair number of fans. It might impress a fair number as well — and they could be ridiculed for it. The irksome part is that most probably won’t be able to deny Clockwork’s exquisite production and the fine performance of lead Queen, singer-songwriter-guitarist Josh Homme, who strikes out into uncharted territories for his brand of rock. “I Sat By the Ocean” has a groovy bass line and agile guitar hooks, almost poppy enough to throw off some Queens fans. “Keep Your Eyes Peeled” has some booming drums and ominous bass moans that might bore other fans. The lyricism spans the spectrum from derivative doggerel to spooky surrealistic sonnets to some disarmingly heavy-hearted balladry — over soft, drifty pianos and moody guitars. “I never lie to myself … rose-tinted eyes color my sorrow a shade of white,” Homme croons on “Kalopsia,” atop syrupy pianos and a fuzzy, AM-pop-tinged organ. Relax, metal fans, that tune quickly kicks into a heavy chopping, feedback-frilled storm of guitars and devastating drums. After almost 15 years of speeding down the desert roads of the Queens’ musical canon, we know we’re longing for something beyond a post-grunge aesthetic. Homme has turned the Queens’ car down a different road, so it depends on whether you like what you see through the windshield. 


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Detroit Metro Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Metro Times Press Club for as little as $5 a month.