Queens of the Stone Age's Super Sad True Love Story

On the pointless, entirely necessary reissue of Rated R

The bonus disc here ain't changing any lives. The live stuff is fine, the screaming-Oliveri gem "Ode to Clarissa" is—I'm sure—a fine tribute, and a couple kicky covers, particularly the one of early-'80s new-wavers Romeo Void's delightfully lurid "Never Say Never," make a further case for this band's sonic and psychological range. It didn't last. The volatile Oliveri got the boot after Songs for the Deaf under still-unclear auspices; Homme has kept the band going despite multiple distractions, including Thee Crooked Vultures, his prog-leaning supergroup with Dave Grohl and John Paul Jones, trading on their names to perfectly adequate effect. But neither principle is likely to manage a psychological profile as bizarre and mesmerizing as Rated R again, a seemingly random jumble of seemingly disparate impulses, tragedy and comedy, calm and calamity, a list of drugs and a list of side effects.

McCartney (front) and Lennon (left) in happier times
Davis Factor
McCartney (front) and Lennon (left) in happier times

rharvilla@villagevoice.com

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