Some of the greatest albums of all time sound like they’ve existed since the dawn of time. The melodies behind some of our favorite compositions always seem to come naturally to us, so it would make sense that writing them may have been the easiest thing in the world. Sometimes it’s second nature, but other times they’re not nearly that easy.
Going through every single one of these albums, there were moments where we could have gotten a completely different listening experience. From the way that the record was produced to having different members of the band in tow, each of these albums had a much different mission statement than what we ended up with. Life can throw wrenches into these situations though, and every one of these bands had to deal with their own hangups to get these records done, which resulted in the classics that we’re listening to these days.
When you look at everything that was stacked against these records, it’s amazing that everything that what they wrote here actually sounds coherent, let alone classic. Rock music might seem like the greatest job in the world, but don’t go walking around thinking that making records is easy either. It can be a nightmare, and it's no surprise that what we got something that looked a lot different once it went through the studio machine.
10. Era Vulgaris - Queens of the Stone Age
Every Queens of the Stone Age record was Joshua Homme inching closer to what he called robot rock. Even though albums like Rated R fit pretty snuggly into the stoner rock category of rock and roll, you can see what he's talking about from the sound of the records, from guitars that were played in lock step with each other to the hurky jerky way that the rhythm pushed and pulled throughout every song. Era Vulgaris was the closest that the band ever got to that sound according to Homme, but robot rock originally may have had a bit of a darker edge to it.
Coming off of one of their more blockbuster albums with Lullabies to Paralyze, Homme was keen to work with a more stable lineup while also having a fair bit of guest stars added to the record. Though Julian Casablancas lent his talents to the song Sick Sick Sick here and there, one important guest was completely MIA during the sessions, with Trent Reznor originally wanting to come on as the producer of the entire project.
Seeing how this was the time when Trent was starting to get back in tune with albums like With Teeth and Year Zero, the partnership had the potential to be something completely different for Queens, going in a borderline metal direction and getting even more grimy, which is hinted at on songs like Turnin on the Screw and Battery Acid. Though the title track is the only piece of the Reznor collab that actually survived as a bonus track, it's still interesting to think what the next evolution of Queens would have sounded like with an industrial makeover.