Kyuss - Blues For The Red Sun
Dali Records
Stoner Rock
14 songs (50:39)
Release year: 1992
Official MySpace
Reviewed by Goat
Archive review

Although I often think that the title of Stoner Rock is better deserved by, say, The Grateful Dead, it's an accurate title for the genre that sums up the mixture of hazy psychedelics and catchy Doom riffs that we all know and love. Out of all the Stoner bands in existence, Kyuss are generally hailed as the originators, and Blues For The Red Sun is their best album, coming but a year after their rocking debut and all but erasing its existence. It's as if the band took the time between albums to do nothing but smoke weed and write killer riffs, as there is absolutely nothing to criticise about Blues For The Red Sun. From the perfect production and tuning on the instruments, Nick Oliveri's loud bass, Josh Homme's deep yet clear guitar, Brant Bjork's impressive drumming (loud without overpowering the other instruments) and of course Josh Garcia's unique voice, none of the members would go on to do anything as good as this. Heck, the entire Stoner Rock genre is pretty much bands trying to recapture the brilliance of this album, even the likes of Acrimony falling short.

So what exactly makes Blues For The Red Sun so good? I could point to any number of things, including the excellent songwriting, but I'm going to go with the sense of flow, the perfect laid-back atmosphere which the album simply breathes out into your ears. As good as the songs individually are - and they're very damn good indeed, from the outrageous catchiness of stompers like Thumb and Green Machine to the chilled prog/space rock of 50 Million Year Trip (Downside Up) - the album's best heard as a whole, simply so you can experience the perfectly smooth transitions between tracks. It's one of the best-written Rock albums ever for that simple reason alone, the thought that went in astonishing, and although the band never made it in the mainstream as their label wanted, they've attained a cult status due to the sheer quality.

The atmosphere of the album, as mentioned, is another reason I love it. I find it incredibly relaxing, as if the highly illegal substances that the band indulged in were somehow captured in the recording and make their way through the headphones into my ears - even the harder rockin' tracks present don't make you want to get up and mosh so much as sit and lazily wave a hand in the air, whilst muttering 'this... this is some good shit, bro'. The psychedelic artwork and revolving title on the front of the album sum it up perfectly, that strange red and black thing exactly what I imagine staring at a red desert sky through a cloud of smoke to be like. Yet Kyuss have more to offer than pipe fodder for the stoned; you simply cannot be a fan of Hard Rock without having come into contact with a band influenced by Homme, Garcia and co. for the better, and as many listens as I have given Blues For The Red Sun, it never gets tiresome. It's an old friend whose appearance never annoys, a favourite seat that embraces comfortingly whenever things get too dark - in the end, all that we humble scribblers can do is to recommend, and when I say that Blues For The Red Sun will appeal to anyone with an appreciation for music at its best, I've never been more serious.

Killing Songs :
Album as a whole is excellent
Goat quoted 94 / 100
Other albums by Kyuss that we have reviewed:
Kyuss - ...And The Circus Leaves Town reviewed by Goat and quoted 86 / 100
Kyuss - Wretch reviewed by Goat and quoted 78 / 100
Kyuss - Welcome to Sky Valley reviewed by Al and quoted 93 / 100
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