Album Review: Vista Chino – Peace
Ok, so they have a new name, but deep down we all know Kyuss Lives! It’s just in another form called Vista Chino and the new album is called Peace. Where that band name came from I have no clue and trying to translate it doesn’t really make sense. One thing is for sure, you are unlikely going to forget it. The legal battle over Kyuss Lives! is over and the result was the guys had to change their name. This is their first output under the new moniker, but if you are including time served as the one and only Kyuss, it’s been a wicked long time…about 18 years since we’ve heard new material. Current full-time membership in Vista Chino is John Garcia on vocals, Bruno Fevery on guitar who also played live shows with Kyuss Lives! Lastly, Brant Bjork is on drums. Mike Dean plays bass while touring and is not listed as a permanent member. Fomer Kyuss members were in and out during the recording process for Peace, but the final version, so far, is what you see above.
Now, will fans accept the new album as Vista Chino or just hope that is sounds as much like Kyuss as possible? Probably both, but that is entirely up to you how you accept it. I will say that the Kyuss is survived in Vista Chino. The songs still sound like stoner, desert rock just like it was created in Palm Desert, CA so long ago. Dargona Dragona certainly emanates that vibe and starts off the album in a promising manner. Planets 1&2 has a cool cadence accompanied by the habitual low tuned strings. I like the overall feel of the song – a cool rockin’ song. Another one that stuck out to me was the long track of the album, Acidize…The Gambling Moose. It’s pretty trippy and the rhythm does pick up from time to time keeping the track interesting.
Other than the immediate standouts, the rest of the songs are good fillers. Nothing particularly tickles my fancy, but nothing disappoints me either. I am ok with Kyuss being laid to rest and witnessing the birth of Vista Chino. We can all move on now understanding that Vista Chino is carrying that torch and at the same time trying to carve out another niche with their brand of quality stoner rock. Deep down inside there will always be remnants of Kyuss in the new band that we can all enjoy. Peace is a good start and I look forward to hearing more from the (former Kyuss) guys in the future. Oh, and I am sure if you check out a Vista Chino show you might get to hear some of those old classics from that one band that no longer exists 😉