August 2002 - Undercover: Songs for the Deaf Review
by Hector the Rock Dog
Every now and then an album will come along that will restore your faith in rock and roll. This year, that album is Queens of the Stone Age's 'Songs For The Deaf'.

The album is both innovative and challenging. It leads, it doesn't follow. QOTSA have been coming for some time and they have definitely now arrived with this one. From the opening track 'Millionaire' the momentum doesn't stop driving. Maybe it is ring-in drummer Dave Grohl. As Nirvana drummer Grohl was the rhythm of Nevermind. He's proven himself with his own band Foo Fighters. Maybe those talents have really rubbed off for QOTSA.

There are absolutely no boundaries on this record. From the stomp of 'No One Knows' to the thrash of 'First It Giveth' to the intricacies of 'Millionaire', the album is simply as jaw dropper song after song. It is everything the DJ from CLONE FM in the opening segment is not.

'A Song For The Dead' is angry but then 'The Sky Is Fallin'' is almost progressive rock. These guys cannot be pigeon-holed. 'Six Shooter' goes back to the rawness of early Nirvana but with Grohl and Screaming Trees Mark Lanegan in the line-up, it is no wonder these guys are pushing the envelope.

There's straight out rock and roll in 'Go With The Flow', the closest the record comes to a pop song. 'Gonna Leave You' gets retro in a British style and 'Do It Again' would be best described as heavy rock (if the term still exists). Actually, if that's true, then 'God Is On The Radio' really blew me out with a Deep Purple like 'Demons Eye' kind of template.

'Another Love Song' is well, almost what the title says it is. It's actually a very commercial flowing song. The final part of the record and the title track is hard and of epic proportions. The intensity would make the perfect finale to a gig.

That brings us to the end of regular programming, but hang in. Both 'Mosquito Song' and 'Everybody's Gonna Be Happy' offer up some bonus listening moments outside of the regular format.

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