Sunday, May 19, 2024

Masters Of Reality Return!

Masters of Reality return with their first new music in 15 years! Today they release their new single, ‘Sugar’ on Mascot Records. They will also be playing shows across Europe in May, but with one date in England, as part of Deserfest in London and Berlin. 

‘Sugar’ has been described as “hypnotic, poignant and vulnerable”. It builds from a stirring melody into a grand, orchestrated swell of emotion, with Chris Goss’s ethereal yet soulful voice floating over the top of it. The song itself dates back to 2006, though it has been through many incarnations and iterations since before Goss added a chorus that had been rattling around the back of his brain since 1995. “As it developed, ‘Sugar’ revealed an inner will to become less esoteric and more directly personal,” he said.

Chris Goss is one of the elusive geniuses of American music. As the singer, guitarist and driving force behind Masters Of Reality, he’s spent more than 40 years charting his own musical journey, travelling from mystical blues to desert rock to psychedelia-edged beauty via all points in between. Where others follow the pack, this desert-dwelling California native has forged a career like no other. A desire to follow his own artistic muse and not bow to external pressures has resulted in a string of albums that sound like no one else but Masters Of Reality, subtly yet indelibly leaving a mark on the generations of musicians who heard them.

This led him to a bunch of kids from Palm Desert called Kyuss. Goss worked with the band on three landmark albums in the early 1990s, helping plant the seeds for the so-called desert rock movement. He struck up a lifelong friendship with the band’s guitarist Josh Homme, who enlisted Goss’ help when it came to getting his post-Kyuss outfit, Queens Of The Stone Age, off the ground, co-producing their first two albums and working with Homme on his Desert Sessions project, with Goss held up as “The Godfather Of Desert Rock”.

The list of bands and artists he has worked with in that capacity is long and illustrious: Queens Of The Stone Age, Kyuss, Mark Lanegan, Foo Fighters, The Cult, UNKLE, Stone Temple Pilots singer Scott Weiland, former Hole bassist Melissa Auf Der Maur, even Hollywood star Russell Crowe. He’s the connective tissue that links so much modern music. 

One near miss was Nirvana – Dave Grohl told him that the grunge band had considered Goss as producer for the follow up to Nevermind. “They used to listen to Masters Of Reality and Kyuss in their van,” said Goss. “But I would have wanted to fuck their sound up.”

Now, 15 years after his last release, Goss has finally returned with Masters Of Reality. Like everything they’ve released since their inception over 40 years ago, it’s another step on a journey that has continuously moved forward.
Talking about ‘Sugar’ further, Goss said, “It’s a complete, emotionally based story instead of my usual, covertly whispered list of what’s wrong with the world’s tragic trajectory. Finally, the lyric gelled, reflecting on intelligent women trying to find their place somewhere in the mess. Not in the modern media’s social strata angle as a percentage number to create ratings by directing a ruse to a large demographic, but a real picture of what real people feel. The inner emotional reality of one life and its relevance to many lives.” 
The arrival of ‘Sugar’ – that was co-produced by Goss and Alain Johannes, and also features drummer John Leamy and bassist Paul Powell – heralds the welcome return of Masters Of Reality.
“We can infer after a long silence of 15 years that the band is ready to face the world,” he said. “When people are truly ready for real music played from the heart, as opposed to auto tune and everything so aligned, and that’s not where this band ever came from. I’ve waited for some time for that storm to pass. Whether inner or outer, it wasn’t right. It’s simply time now, and this song Sugar is the most personal track we have ever done.”

You can stream/listen to ‘Sugar’ here and watch the lyric video here at RAMzine.

Masters Of Reality will play Electric Ballroom in London on 17th May as part of DesertFest. Tickets are available here.

Paul H Birch
Paul H Birch
RAMzine Senior Writer - Writer of fiction, faction and fact, has edited several newsstand magazines. He declares himself a hack for hire but refuses to compromise on the subject of music.

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