Earlier this month, we were elated to announce that Dave Grohl had rejoined Queens of the Stone Age for the band’s upcoming, in-progress sixth album. Exciting as this news was — bringing us one massive step closer to the classic QOTSA lineup responsible for 2002’s untouchable Songs for the Deaf — it wasn’t exactly shocking: Grohl is at the top of his multi-tasking game at the moment. But to imagine embattled former bassist Nick Oliveri reuniting with his old chums … it’d be too much for even the most dedicated desert-head to hope for.
And yet, this, as Stereogum noticed, from the Facebook page of Mondo Generator, the band Oliveri founded in 1997: “NEWS: Nick has re-joined Kyuss, and has recently recorded his vocals on a new Queens of the Stone Age song! Stay tuned.”
When Deaf came out, the album featured a rogue’s gallery of contributors, but Queens were definitively four: Josh Homme, Nick Oliveri, Dave Grohl, and Mark Lanegan — four leaders amongst bands, united under one banner theoretically spangled with weed leaves and dipped in pure liquid adrenaline. But Homme fired Oliveri in 2004 over rumors that Oliveri had physically abused his girlfriend, and then things got weird. Last year, Oliveri was involved in a five-hour standoff with a Los Angeles S.W.A.T. team stemming from a domestic incident.
Also, there was that small concern of Homme suing Kyuss Lives!, the sketchily semi-reunited version of Kyuss, the seminal desert-rock band that he and Oliveri had first played in together in the early ’90s. Oliveri had joined the legally fraught project initially but quit when things got ugly, stating, “I don’t wanna be fired from any band … again.” But it appears he’s back with the old new old band as well, despite a judge’s ruling that the band could not record under the moniker and official recommendation that they “begin re-branding under a new name.”
But sometimes you’ve just gotta, you know, go with the flow. Other things we know about the upcoming Queens of the Stone Age album: Trent Reznor will appear on it, and it’s going to be “completely ridiculous.” We’re holding out for that Lanegan announcement.