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Desert Sessions / Vol. 11 & 12
Album:Vol. 11 & 12 Collection:General
Artist:Desert Sessions Added:10/2019
Label:Matador Records 

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Add Date:2019-10-30 Pull Date:2020-01-01 
Week Ending:24 Nov10 Nov3 Nov
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Album Review
DJ Stace
Reviewed 2019-10-27 
Album / Artist: Vol 11 & 12 / Desert Sessions
Label: Matador

Reviewed: 10/25/2019
DJ Stace

General Comments:
The desert rock & roll circus, finally returns. Vast and fragmentary, quirky and familiar. Homme’s curation is, as always, spot on. A killer eclectic collection/sampler from the beating heart of Desert Rock: Rancho de la Luna.

Release Notes:
Ending a 16-year hiatus since its last installment, the most mythical, longest running rock n roll mixtape odyssey in existence, Desert Sessions will return this October with the most ambitious entries yet in its expansive and elusive catalog: Vols. 11 & 12 (a/k/a respectively as Arrivederci Despair and Tightwads & Nitwits & Critics & Heels)… Vols. 11 & 12 were recorded mostly in a six-day span in December 2018 at Rancho De La Luna studios in Joshua Tree, CA, with Queens of the Stone Age founder and Desert Sessions ringleader/producer Joshua Homme enlisting a cast of players including:
Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top)
Stella Mozgawa (Warpaint)
Jake Shears (Scissor Sisters)
Mike Kerr (Royal Blood)
Carla Azar (Autolux, Jack White)
Les Claypool (Primus)
Matt Sweeney
Matt Berry (What We Do in the Shadows, Toast of London)
Libby Grace
Töôrnst Hülpft
Dave Catching (earthlings, Eagles of Death Metal)

RIYL: QOTSA, EODM, Them Crooked Vultures, Desert Rock, Brant Bjork, any of the above listed.

FCCs: 1,7,8 Clean Edits included
Play: All
Favorites: 2,4,6,9,10,11 Rated with *****

Tracks:
1. FCC “SHIT” Move Together 5:03 - (lead vocal: Billy F. Gibbons) - Midtempo weirdo-rock jam session. About 2 minutes of Billy Gibbons falsetto and wonky electronic rhythm, before all hell breaks loose with Homme’s Godzilla riffage and a pots and pans chaotic drum breakdown. Shifts gears several times. Gets very Eagles (the 70’s ones, not EODM) at about 3:40, then takes on a familiar sleazy Them Crooked Vultures beat to a drum breakdown fadeout. Killer. Play the Radio Edit, below.
2. ***** Noses in Roses Forever 5:33 - (lead vocal: Joshua Homme) - Classic uptempo QOTSA ass-shaking spacerock. Desert Sessions tunes have a habit of finding their way onto subsequent QOTSA albums, and this is the likely culprit. Cool robotic buzzy lead space guitar soloing, throughout. Rhythm shifts at about 1:45 and turns surfy. Cool, production shifts throughout, riffing on the same melody. Soundtrack for the next Guardians of the Galaxy movie. Great song.
3. **** Far East for the Trees 4:52 - Midtempo desert spacerock spaghetti western instrumental. Killer galloping rhythm and sitarish guitars. Sounds like a great Brant Bjork jam.
4. ***** If You Run 4:00 - (lead vocal: Libby Grace) - Dark brooding Appalachian folk acoustic start with atmospheric guitar feedback and build to Led Zep worthy crashing epic guitar solo battle for Middle Earth ending . Beautiful vocals. Has a She Keeps Bees vibe. Great song.
5. **** Crucifire 1:44 - (lead vocal: Mike Kerr) - Fast, insistent desert punk ala EODM. Killer Velveeta cheesey backup vocals.
6. *** Chic Tweetz 3:47 - (vocals: Töôrnst Hülpft, Matt Berry) - Goofy, Weenesque weirdo rock from Lapland. I don’t know what to say about this one. Give it a listen before you play it cold. Dorky, potty-humorish, though surprisingly FCC clean. If EODM were lead by the flamboyant lovechild of Liberace and that German commander from Inglorious Basterds. Song ends abruptly at 3:20 and gives way to some helium driven nonsensical patter between Hülpft and the recording crew, which is funny, but not a song.
7. FCC “FUCKING” Something You Can’t See 3:26 - (lead vocal: Jake Shears) - Cool 70’s midtempo beachrock groove. Has a nice airiness to it. Good song for driving through the desert with the windows or top down. I had to look at the credits to prove to myself it wasn’t a Hanni El Khatib colab. Killer tune, play the radio edit, below.
8. FCC “FUCKING” Easier Said Than Done 3:06 - (lead vocal: Joshua Homme) - Homme’s trademark tone poem desert rock opera anthem. Sounds like a continuation of something you’ve heard before on a QOTSA or TCV album. Starts with a metronomic rhythm and piano/space organ accomp. Great vocals and lyrics. Last 25 seconds builds and rocks a little to an abrupt ending. Play the radio edit, below.
9. **** CLEAN EDIT Move Together 5:03 - (lead vocal: Billy F. Gibbons) - Midtempo weirdo-rock jam session. About 2 minutes of Billy Gibbons falsetto and wonky electronic rhythm, before all hell breaks loose with Homme’s Godzilla riffage and a pots and pans chaotic drum breakdown. Shifts gears several times. Gets very Eagles (the 70’s ones, not EODM) at about 3:40, then takes on a familiar sleazy Them Crooked Vultures beat to a drum breakdown fadeout. Killer.
10. ***** CLEAN EDIT Something You Can’t See 3:26 - (lead vocal: Jake Shears) - Cool 70’s midtempo beachrock groove. Has a nice airiness to it. Good song for driving through the desert with the windows or top down. I had to look at the credits to prove to myself it wasn’t a Hanni El Khatib colab. Killer tune.
11. **** CLEAN EDIT Easier Said Than Done 3:06 - (lead vocal: Joshua Homme) - Homme’s trademark tone poem desert rock opera anthem. Sounds like a continuation of something you’ve heard before on a QOTSA or TCV album. Starts with a metronomic rhythm and piano/space organ accomp. Great vocals and lyrics. Last 25 seconds builds and rocks a little to an abrupt ending.

Track Listing
1.Move Together 6.Chic Tweetz
2.Noses In Roses Forever 7.Something You Can't See
3.Far East For The Trees 8.Easier Said Than Done
4.If You Run 9.Move Together (Clean Edit)
5.Crucifire 10.Something You Can't See (Clean Edit)
 11.Easier Said Than Done (Clean Edit)