Front page photo by Philip Cosores
Queens of the Stone Age’s latest record, Villains, may not have been one of our top 50 albums of the year, but it was certainly a worthy contender. It’s an effort that sees the band cross into dance music by challenging themselves to find new grooves with assistance from pop producer Mark Ronson. Dan Weiss, who reviewed the album for us, deemed it QOTSA’s “best album since 2002’s rock-pantheon coronation Songs for the Deaf, in part because [Josh Homme] finally figured out how to make a consistently engaging and inventive record.”
Not everyone was keen of the hard rock band’s new-found partnership with Ronson, however. In a new interview with The Current, Homme was asked if he was was surprised by the backlash from “old-school purists, especially if they go all the way back to Kyuss,” who disapproved of Ronson’s involvement.
“No, I was expecting it,” Homme admitted. “It would be safe to understand that I might have known that that was going to happen.” In fact, Homme said he yearned for such a reaction.
“I do believe that there’s no stasis or static in life. You’re growing or dying,” Homme explained. “And, I feel if I’m challenging myself and if we’re challenging each other, we’re going in the right direction. The by-product of that is that anyone that’s into us should expect the poke in the chest because we’re doing it to ourselves first.”
So for those fans that hated Villains on principle, Homme had this to say:
“Part of me thinks that every time we put something out, we may lose 20 percent of the people. That 20 percent of the people might go: ‘It’s changed! Where’s my band that I had?’ You can pre-suppose that. I told this to Ronson, ‘If 15 percent of the people don’t hate you, you suck.” He said, ‘I’m just trying to get it to 40.'”
Those who got down with Villains will have their chance to see the material live when QOTSA head back on tour in 2018. In June, they’ll hold their own festival in London with Iggy Pop, Run the Jewels, The Hives, and others.