Queens of the Stone Age
Lullabies to Paralyze
Crude or Profane Language
Drug and Alcohol Content
Other Negative Elements
The hopeful “This Lullaby” longs for a love to return. The singer can’t get enough of a certain relationship on “In My Head.”
Young fans contemplating suicide could get a swift shove in that direction from “Tangled Up in Plaid” (“I know you gotta be free to kill yourself”). A bitter breakup finds the singer railing against his ex, spewing obscenities and harsh anatomical slang (“Broken Box”). “Skin on Skin” features a graphic description of oral sex and related sound effects. With an injection of punk rhythms, “Medication” asks if “a revelation from a gun” is the “dose you’ve been dreaming of.” That cut is further marred by sexual remarks. Angst and a lack of vision characterize the profane, rudderless “You Got a Killer Scene There, Man” (“I wanna be crushed by your sweet caress/What’s the [expletive] difference, we all gonna die ... Got no flag, got no home/ Just witches and scabs, an awful mess/I confess—let’s do it again”). Offering no encouragement or hope, lead vocalist Joshua Homme assures someone feeling hollow, “Everybody Knows That You Are Insane.” He also seems to derive pleasure from seeing someone suffer (“Burn the Witch”).
Despite being mellower than the band’s last release, the often dark, cryptic Lullabies to Paralyze swims in a moat of gothic despair. Tunes suggest that the balm for fatalism is hedonism. Or worse yet, suicide.