Dear Mr. Homme,
I’d be remiss if I didn’t start off saying thanks for the many years of ass kickery. Having never spoken to you either in-person or via telephone (the closest I’ve yet come was being blown off in 2005), this feels an appropriate avenue to mention that, although there’ve been highs and lows, hard rock probably wouldn’t be the same in 2010 without your having been in it for about two decades now. So yeah, much appreciated.
On to the business at hand: By now I’m sure you’ve seen the video of your former Kyuss cohorts, Nick Oliveri, Brant Bjork and John Garcia playing together at Hellfest in France during a Garcia Plays Kyuss set. If you missed it, here it is:
Pretty badass, I know. Now, the thing of it is, I can’t imagine you haven’t watched that and thought to yourself, perhaps more than ever before, that maybe it’s time to get Kyuss back together. I’m not going to urge you not to do it. Rather, the purpose of this letter is to ask that, if you do decide it’s time for a Kyuss reunion, to do it the right way.
By that I mean no shows. Think of all the reunions going on; bands get back together and they’re all so excited to be playing again — or they’re just doing it for cash — that they book a tour, and yeah, it can be great, but it’s a nostalgic thing. If Kyuss‘ music has proved to be anything, it’s timeless, and to see a reunion come about that’s just based on, “Hey, let’s trot out ‘Allen’s Wrench’ for the folks who didn’t get to see it,” would be disappointing and lame. I think that’s also why it hasn’t happened yet.
That’s not a slag on Garcia Plays Kyuss. I saw them in April and it was great to hear him sing those songs. But if you’re going to revive a band like Kyuss, whose popularity came after their breakup, the way to do it is to put out an album first. I know the music is a lot different, but the best-handled reunion I’ve ever seen was that of Celtic Frost (until it fell apart, anyway). They announced they were back together, and immediately started writing. They took as long as it needed to take to write — in their case it was about five years — and they put out a killer album in Monotheist, and only then did they start booking tours. It was a triumphant return, the shows sold out, the record was great, and most importantly, fans had a context for who Celtic Frost was in the present, instead of who they were when they put out Into the Pandemonium or To Mega Therion.
What I’m saying is, it’s been 13 years since Kyuss ended, and a lot has happened in that time. If you decide to bring Kyuss back, don’t just do it to play the greatest hits, do it as a creative endeavor. That way no one on either side, fan or artist, goes into it thinking things will be just like they were on Blues for the Red Sun, which is a ridiculous expectation but a prevalent one nonetheless. Write first, get Chris Goss to produce, and put out a Kyuss album. Then tour. You’ll find that what Kyuss was is entirely preserved, and what Kyuss is today can honor that while at the same time offer a glimpse of how time has changed you guys as players. As a fan, I just think Kyuss deserves more than the usual “one more go” reunion, and felt compelled to share my thoughts. On the off-chance you see them, thanks for reading.
Some Dude You’ve Never Heard Of
Heaping Pismire Taskmaster
Tags: California, Kyuss, Queens of the Stone Age