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on 18 May 2016
I haven't listened to any of the other QOTSA albums before this, but this has made me a fan.

Good things:
+ Excellent, consistent song writing
+ Songs have a consistent feel to them, making it more than a collection of songs
+ Despite the above, there is enough variety to keep the listener interested, ranging
from wistful ballads ("Vampyre of Time and Memory") to swaggering funk grooves
("Smooth Sailing")
+ Decent guest spots such as Dave Grohl, Alex Turner and Elton John
+ Memorable from the first listen (it passes the old grey whistle test)
+ Dark, haunting production

Bad things:
- Bizarre choice of opening number, and underwhelming closer
- Some songs drag on, namely "Fairweather Friends" and "Keep Your Eyes Peeled"
- The CD does not have a leaflet, I might as well have bought the MP3 version.
Seriously, CD versions need a leaflet to pore through

Favourite songs: "Smooth Sailing", "Vampyre of Time and Memory", "My God is the Sun"
All in all, a solid album. Would highly recommend if you like rock in any shape or form.
8.5 / 10
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 30 November 2013
It's finally happened, Queens Of The Stone Age have made a stone-clad classic, worthy of standing shoulder-to-shoulder with all of the rock greats. Like many great albums, it was born from extraordinary circumstances; this one being Josh Homme nearly dying and being bed-ridden in hospital for weeks on end after complications from a routine knee operation. "Like Clockwork" combines all of the best elements of QOTSA's music; the melodious nature of the more gentle songs with the power of their heavier albums to produce an album that screams quality the very first time you hear it. I can quite honestly say that this is Homme's most accomplished album to date and even my previous favourite of his, "Songs For The Deaf" just can't compare with an album filled with song after song of absolutely brilliance. Of course, what this album has in common with "Songs For The Deaf" is a return of Dave Grohl to the drums for half of the album and there are other guest appearances by rock heavyweights such as Trent Reznor, Nick Oliveri and, er, Jake Shears.

It's very difficult indeed to pick out favourites when the whole album is excellent, but I will give it a go. "I Sat By The Ocean" is the first stand-out track in this set; it's catchy, powerful and brilliant. "The Vampyre Of Time and Memory", an excellent composition, is specifically about the numbness of feeling nothing when ending a relationship, but Homme's hospital experience is surely referenced when the swelling music that accompanies the line, "I've survived, I speak, I breathe, I'm incomplete, I'm alive, hurray!" builds to a bitter climax and tears at your heart. "If I Had A Tail" (featuring Arctic Monkeys' Alex Turner on vocals) begins with some tongue-in-cheek nonsense lyrics, but really grabs you when the arresting guitar bursts in on the chorus. "My God Is The Sun" is probably the most typically like tracks from other QOTSA albums, with a spiralling guitar riff, pounding drums and ethereal harmonies, but it's still a winner. "Fairweather Friends", co-written with long-time friend Mark Lanegan and featuring Elton John on background vocals and piano, is one of the best tracks on "Like Clockwork", boasting a truly beautiful melody, superb delivery and some of the most gorgeous guitar work I've heard all year.

"Smooth Sailing" is a rather enjoyable groove of a song, although I'm not sure what Rossi and Parfitt would make of Josh's promise to "Blow his load all over the status quo". "I Appear Missing", a quiet/loud masterpiece, is amongst the best pieces of music on this release and, even at six minutes long, doesn't outstay its welcome for a second. The album finishes with an utterly sublime cut, as the melancholy title track is perhaps the most beautiful piece of music Homme has ever written. It is after the album has finished, when the silence is louder than usual, when you find yourself still reeling from what you've just listened to that you realise that this piece of work is something very special indeed, something that makes you reach for the play button to hear it all over again right after it has finished. Without any hyperbole, "Like Clockwork" is not only of the best albums to be released this year, it's one of the best heavy rock albums of all time.
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on 1 November 2013
I may only conclude that the nay sayers like their music to be predictable and samey, as this superb slice of rock music is the kind of album that only appears every 10 or 15 years and which delivers on pretty much every level possible. All ten tracks are both different in composition and recording and in that respect this album reminds me of the much heralded Beatles White and if anything it is consistently stronger than the White with no patchy fillers in sight. Track nine, " I appear missing " is a mighty roaring and soaring majestic colossus of a song, which few if any bands will likely ever equal or better. This track is a classic example of Homme opting to make an album which showcases a formidable musical talent as opposed to delivering another fan friendly QOTSA record. From the wonderful guttural bass lines of opening track " Keep your eyes peeled " to the lofty crescendos of the closing title track, " Like Clockwork " there is no let up in this album delivering stunningly crafted songs, played and performed by top flight musicians to the highest possible standards. Even Spiritualized get a nod on the closer as a Jason Pierce esq swarm of vocals and brass engulfs and transforms the chorus to an exhilarating high which will having you groping for repeat play. Like the Beatles White album, this collection of gems has something for everyone, from the poppy " I sat by the ocean " to the powerhouse juggernaut of " If I had a tail " to the smouldering magnificence of " Kalopsia " to the funk and grind of " Smooth Sailing ". "Its all down hill from here" Josh reflects on closer " Like Clockwork ". Not when you make records this good Josh. Never in a million years matey. BUY THIS!
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on 25 July 2013
First off, should say that I love just about everything I've heard that Josh Homme's had a hand in. Kyuss, Desert Sessions (9/10), Eagles of Death Metal, Them Crooked Vultures. But it's Queens of the Stone Age I've always rated highest, ever since I first heard Feel Good Hit of the Summer. They peaked, for me, with Songs for the Deaf...

That's why I've been holding off reviewing this album. Could they ever write a song as good as No-one Knows? Well, three months after first hearing their latest I've reached the opinion that Like Clockwork is right up there with the best stuff the band has ever done.

The cd starts off with the sound of smashing glass, then kicks into the slow, rolling menace of Keep Your Eyes Peeled. It's followed by the chuggy, I Sat By the Ocean. Later on, there's My God Is the Sun and I Appear Missing. All of them just the way I like QOTSA to sound. But there are surprises lurking in among the more familiar tracks. Fairweather Friends and Smooth Sailing are both superb and, to these ears, wouldn't have been out of place on Bowie's The Next Day. Kalopsia, with its sleazy lounge atmosphere is probably my least favourite, but even that breaks into raucously familiar territory. Vampyre and the title track, Like Clockwork, are two gorgeous piano-based songs with wistful lyrics and aching melodies.

Then there's the tenth song. If I Had a Tail. If there's a jauntier song around at the moment, I'd love to hear it. I defy anyone to walk down the street with headphones on and not have the beat defining their stride. The tune's instantly memorable; the lyrics sharp and witty. Love it. Can't stop playing it. Can't stop playing the whole cd. Josh Homme's done it again!
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on 30 October 2013
After the brilliant 'Songs For The Deaf' and 'Lullabies to Paralyze', I found 'Era Vulgaris' a bit disappointing, so was apprehensive when I heard about 'Like Clockwork' on QOTSA's Twitter feed, but the feed provided links to 3 (or was it 4?) animated videos of songs from 'Like Clockwork'. I was so impressed that I bought the album and wasn't disappointed.

The album contains great rock tracks along with some slower tracks with some great piano work and Josh's dreamy vocals.

Standout tracks include my favourite, 'Kalopsia' which also features the vocal talents of Trent Reznor, the brilliant 'Keep Your Eyes Peeled', 'My God is the Sun' and the slow 'The Vampyre of Time and Memory' which I think shows how QOTSA have grown. I don't think there are any weak tracks on the album.

A must buy for any QOTSA fan and a great introduction to QOTSA for others.
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on 27 August 2013
The first track I heard was keep your eyes peeled and instantly I thought "yes this is what I remember QOTSA being" with the heavy bass and slow lyrics,
which then goes into the released single sat by the ocean which is very similar to the last albums style and probably the easiest song to listen to,
sadly I'm not keen on vampire of time and memories it just feels wrong but luckily enough its the shortest track and quickly redeemed by if I had a tail which just seems to be done right or maybe its just the contrast between this and the previous,
up next my god is the sun which is my personal favourite as it seems to match there earlier work the best I could hear this on songs for the deaf and it wouldn't be out of place,
sadly kalopsia takes the higher tempo and slows it down to a dead halt then jerks you forward at speed then back to a halt it just seems poorly thought out and is a disappointment,
I'm wary now as I'm heading into fair-weather friends its pretty average really not what I want a few steps up from kalopsia but not by much,
and luckily enough smooth sailing starts better but is probably about 90 seconds too long which turns a good track into a overdrawn bore,
and if fair-weather friends was 90 seconds too long I appear missing is about 3-4 minutes too long and doesn't seem to go anywhere or do anything for me,
surprisingly like clockwork actually makes sense and fits in well after I appear missing and finishes the album in a good way with a slow gentle rhythm.

As with most albums its a mixed bag depending on taste some I like some more than others but its mostly good and deserving of 4 stars though I did have to debate if it was only 3 in my head but I think that's with a biased comparison to there previous hits and forgetting some of the not so great tracks that were on other albums.
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on 25 July 2013
...have to admit,on first listen,at work,with loads of background noise,wasn't too taken with it.made the same mistake as many initially,comparing it to their other albums,but this album is an absolute epic in it's own right!!...so much so it prompted me to shell out £43 to go and see them at wembley in november!!....listening to it all the time now,waiting to get bored of it,no sign of that happening yet,and i've had it since 3rd june,that is a sign of a truly quality record for me...my fave tracks are a little different from most i've seen,like the deeper stuff....vampyres of time & memory and kalopsia doing it for me...but its all pretty darn excellent!
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on 31 October 2013
Firstly I should say I am a massive QOTSA and Josh Homme fan. This the latest release is a fantastic album although I'll admit it took may be 3 or 4 listens to deliver is full aural splendour. Some of their earlier albums have been much more immediate but give this a chance and it really does rise to be a strong contender for their best CD.

For me there isn't a weak song, I love them all and the flow of the tracks works well. There are definitely influences from Josh's other projects, Desert Sessions and Them Crooked Vultures infusing the music in a greater way than probably other QOTSA albums.
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on 13 November 2013
This is a brilliant album. I have listened to most of QOTSA albums and Josh Homme's other work (TCV)and never fail to be impressed by their work. Other reviewers have said that this one doesn't have the 'head-banger' appeal of older albums. I agree, but I think that they have moved on to a more mature product. I particularly like the title track and the falsetto singing which works well on that track. I listened to a live version of this track before I bought the album and really liked the intricate guitar work on the instrumental break. The album version, I felt, was slightly over-produced in comparison, but I still like it. Not a duff track and thoroughly recommended.
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on 10 June 2013
Bought this on the strength of My God is the Sun being on very welcome heavy rotation on Planet Rock. This album is one of very few that I've played again straight after listening through once. Not sure exactly how you genre-fy this type of rock, but for dusty, lo-fi, slightly spaced out and at times ethereal music with great hooks and rhythms, this is a gooden!
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