One of the most common refrains from the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic was that quarantining would give you the opportunity to pursue that passion project or new hobby you otherwise didn't have time for. One of the people who actually took that advice was Queens of the Stone Age bassist Michael Shuman.
"Not being able to tour and be on the road ... it gave me a chance to look at myself, try something different and challenge myself," Shuman tells ABC Audio. "Having hours on end to toy with a different way of looking at music that I hadn't explored before, I think, was my main focus."
The result is a new solo endeavor called GLU, which Shuman began with the intention of changing up his usual guitar-based approach to songwriting.
"I think going to the computer and going to synthetic instruments and starting at that point just allowed my musical approach to open up," Shuman explains.
For those who know him through his work with QotSA, the most surprising element of GLU will probably be Shuman's rapping vocals.
"I wanted people to take my lyrics and my rhymes and my flow seriously, while also having this musical landscape that isn't necessarily in a lot of modern hip-hop, or however you want to call it," Shuman shares. "I kinda hate saying 'hip-hop,' 'cause it's not that, but it is a lot of what influenced me on this."
The debut GLU EP, My Demons, will arrive February 24. Its title track, which features Phantogram's Sarah Barthel, is out now.
"When you hear someone like [Barthel], who's a real bada** and is really, really good at her craft, to have that [voice] come in and compliment the song was kinda everything," Shuman says.
(Video contains uncensored profanity.)