As HUGE Kyuss fans we’ll take our lumps and admit that initially we didn’t give …Only A Suggestion, the debut album from vocalist John Garcia’s Hermano, the time of day it deserved. Sure, we gobbled up all the post-Kyuss offerings from all the ex-members with Garcia, in particular, having an impressive (Albeit short-lived in most cases) body of work that went from Slo-Burn to Unida until rejoining with drummer Brant Bjork and, at different times, bassists Nick Oliveri and Scott Reeder for Kyuss Lives which eventually became Vista Chino before putting out some proper solo releases.
Hermano was the one that stuck around for a bit, though, with three albums under their belt and no, that we know of, lost or unreleased full-lengths to their name (Lookin’ at you, Unida!). While we go back to their final release …Into The Exam Room (What’s up with the ellipsis love???) over and over again we sometimes forget the majesty of that debut release but thanks to Ripple Music it’s back in our orbit, and yours, once again.
With Hermano-approved new mixes and masterings from David Barrik and Ty Tabor respectively, pressing play on this updated version of …Only A Suggestion is like hearing the recording for the first time all over again. From the burgeoning rumble of “The Bottle” through to the simmering bluesy wails of “Nick’s Yea”, the underrated post-Kyuss gem that was Hermano shines once again.
In between those crunchy cookie wafers is some seriously sweet filling with a track like “Alone Jeffe” offering up what we think are the beginnings of the “Hermano sound” with Garcia alongside drummer Steve Earle, bassist/organist/pianist Dandy Brown, and guitarists Mike Callahan and David Angstrom offering up all the Desert Rawk swag in a succinct three minutes and change. “Manager’s Special” is a throttler that speeds ahead with Garcia’s cadence matching Earle, Callahan, and Angstrom’s drum and riff intensity and then “Senor Moreno’s Plan” has some additional bite in the guitar department with Garcia laying the snarl on thick vocally.
Further in, “Landetta (Motherload)” is a wonderful spaced out odyssey that would’ve easily held up in the upper echelons of legendary audio output from Garcia’s older outfit while “5 To 5” is a rollicking down home shredder with all of Garcia’s signature soulful vocals on display along with a decidedly gnarly growl and Earle and Brown’s rhythm section already sounding like they’ve been doing this together for decades.
…Only A Suggestion is out through Ripple Music on November 3rd. You can pre-order your copy now in some killer vinyl limited pressings by heading here or here. For more from Hermano… well, that’s not an option because they ain’t a thing no more. But you can follow Ripple Music on the socials by heading here, here, or here.