"Burn the Witch" is the third single (fourth in Canada after Long, Slow Goodbye) released from Queens of the Stone Age's fourth album, Lullabies to Paralyze. Many of its lyrics run parallel with the dark, folkloristic theme for this album. It has been introduced by Josh Homme when played live as his favorite current song.
Along with "You've Got a Killer Scene There, Man...", it borrows heavily from the blues, probably because ZZ Top's legendary guitarist and singer Billy Gibbons appears on lead guitar and backup vocals. Gibbons also plays on a cover of his own band's "Precious and Grace", a bonus track on the album.
The song involves an exchange of vocal lines between the falsetto of Homme and the twin baritones of Gibbons and Mark Lanegan. Gibbons does not regularly tour with the band, so the other vocal was performed by Lanegan, until he stopped touring with the band. Currently, Josh Homme sings alone with backing vocals from the rest of the band, who lack either of the studio musicians' deep growls. In the previous line-up, Homme played bass and Alain Johannes played a quite different version of Gibbons' solo. This song (its remix by UNKLE) was also featured in and on the...