ABC Music News

Royal Blood channels Queens of the Stone Age in "breaking their own rules" with new sonic direction

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Credit: Dean Martindale

The dance-oriented direction of Royal Blood‘s new single “Trouble’s Coming” may be different for the U.K. duo, but the move definitely isn’t unprecedented. For example, Queens of the Stone Age‘s latest album, 2017’s Villains, found the group jumping headfirst into dance influences, and even recruiting Mark Ronson to produce it.

You may recall that Royal Blood opened for Queens of the Stone Age during their Villains tour. While hitting the road with Josh Homme and company may not have inspired the dance direction specifically, Royal Blood’s Mike Kerr tells ABC Audio that the experience “definitely gave us the confidence to…do something for ourselves.”

“The reason I love [QotSA] so much is because that they refuse to stay in their lane,” Kerr says. “They’re always breaking their own rules. I think that this is perhaps the first time, though, that we have done that for ourselves.”

“Trouble’s Coming” is the lead single off Royal Blood’s forthcoming third album, due out in 2021. It follows 2017’s How Did We Get So Dark?, which had the unenviable task of trying to live up to the success of Royal Blood’s hit 2014 debut.

“We were in a tough position with that second record,” Kerr recalls. “It felt like a lose-lose. It felt like we would either make something too different or too safe.”

While recording Dark was a “turbulent experience,” Kerr feels now that it primed him and drummer Ben Thatcher to try something new with album three.

“I’m really proud of that record, I think there’s some really good songs on it,” Kerr says. “I think it’s just this time around, we know who we are a lot more. Weirdly, I think when you are more, it allows you to step outside of that more comfortably.”

By Josh Johnson
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