Josh Homme discussed his songwriting on the new Queens of the Stone Age album Villains in a new Rolling Stone interview.
“When you’re younger, I think you are encouraged or you encourage yourself to hide behind a mask,” Homme says. “As the years have gone on, that mask has worn away. I’ve lost any reason to hide. I have a vast disinterest in hiding anything when it comes to writing music. The more vulnerable and honest it is, the better I feel about it.
“And what else am I gonna write about?” he continues. “Queens has always been a place that’s free of the politics and rigmarole of the day. We’re more like an arcade or an ice-cream parlor where you don’t talk politics. There needs to be escape. I’d rather talk about one of the only things that matters – that can be family and what you’re passionate about.”
He also discussed ISIS’ terrorist attack on Eagles of Death Metal’s show at the Bataclan in November 2015.
“I really don’t like talking about that” – he’s still shaken by what happened to his Eagles of Death Metal bandmates, and it struck him again this past May when he heard about the attack on Ariana Grande’s concert in Manchester, England. “It’s a terrifying club to be part of,” he says. “You hope it never gets any bigger now than two artists. If you could trade places, you actually wouldn’t, because someone else would understand that. I don’t think I would wish that on anybody else. … There’s always been fucked-up shit. There’s always been villains. All it does is give you the raison d’être to go again. If you needed a fucking reason, you got one.”
With that sentiment, he says he’s ready to hit the road again with Queens. “I refuse to philosophically feel any different than I always do,” he says. “This is what I want to do, and I’m gonna do that. It’s just always a desire. You can call it being free; you can call it being American; you can call it being punk rock; or you can call it being a banana-fucking-head. I don’t care what you call it. I’m gonna go do what we do, no matter what.”