Monday, April 2, 2012

Albums Listened To In March (65)

  1. Adrenaline Mob - Adrenaline Mob (EP) - New
  2. Alestorm - Back Through Time
  3. Alestorm - Black Sails At Midnight
  4. Alestorm - Captain Morgan's Revenge 
  5. Andrew W.K. - I Get Wet
  6. Asteroid - Asteroid
  7. Asteroid - Asteroid II
  8. Backwoods Payback - Momantha - New
  9. Backwoods Payback - Use Magic To Kill Death (EP)
  10. Baroness - Red Album
  11. The Black Keys - The Moan (EP) - New
  12. Black Sabbath - Black Sabbath
  13. Black Sabbath - Heaven And Hell
  14. Black Sabbath - Master of Reality
  15. Black Sabbath - Never Say Die!
  16. Black Sabbath - Paranoid
  17. Black Sabbath - Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
  18. Black Sabbath - Sabotage
  19. Black Sabbath - Technical Ecstasy
  20. Black Sabbath - Vol. 4
  21. Causa Sui - Causa Sui - New
  22. Causa Sui - Free Ride - New
  23. Cinder - House Full of No Trust
  24. Colossa - Born To Make A Sound - New
  25. Colossa - Colossa (EP)
  26. The Company Band - The Company Band
  27. The Company Band - Sign Here, Here & Here (EP)
  28. Corrosion of Conformity - America's Volume Dealer - New
  29. Corrosion of Conformity - Animosity - New
  30. Corrosion of Conformity - Corrosion of Conformity - New
  31. Corrosion of Conformity - In The Arms of God - New
  32. Crippled Black Phoenix - A Love of Shared Disasters
  33. Crippled Black Phoenix - Night Raider
  34. Devil - Magister Mundi Xum (EP)
  35. Devil - Time to Repent - New
  36. Elf - Carolina County Ball
  37. Elf - Elf
  38. Elf - Trying To Burn The Sun
  39. Gentleman's Pistols - At Her Majesty's Pleasure - New
  40. Ghost - Opus Eponymous
  41. GiantRider - GiantRider - New
  42. Huntress - Off With Her Head (EP) - New
  43. King Giant - Dismal Hollow - New
  44. King Giant - Southern Darkness
  45. Lamont - Thunder Boogie - New
  46. Low Sonic Drift - Shadows of The Titan (EP) - EP
  47. Luna Mortis - The Absence - New
  48. Megachurch - Megachurch - New
  49. Megachurch - Megachurch 2: Judgement Day - New
  50. Nick Drake - Bryter Layter - New
  51. One Day As A Lion - One Day As A Lion (EP) - New
  52. One Inch Giant - Malva - New
  53. Orchid - Capricorn - New
  54. Ramon Zarate - Oyster - New
  55. Ramon Zarate - Ramon Zarate - New
  56. sHEAVY - Celestial Hi-Fi
  57. sHEAVY - The Electric Sleep
  58. sHEAVY - The Machine That Won The War
  59. sHEAVY - Synchronized
  60. Sherman Burns - The End Is All
  61. Spelljammer - Inches From The Sun (EP) - New
  62. Spelljammer - Vol II (EP) - New 
  63. Smoke - Smoke Follows Beauty
  64. Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra - "The West Will Rise Again" (EP) - New
  65. Wizard Rifle - Speak Loud Say Nothing - New

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

New Album: Lamont - Thunder Boogie

Lamont caught my eye with their humorous artwork: a seemingly white-trash man (sorry if that offends someone out there, but come on) with a pair of shotguns/rifles, a dog/pit bull in the background, and a cigarette hanging from his mouth. It made me chuckle, give the album a second look - quite the feat with my huge collection, and the 96 artists (and 358 albums, give or take a single or two) that are waiting in my 'Must Listen To' list - and then the album title, Thunder Boogie (ignore the second album at AllMusic, obviously that is for a different band), lead to a listen. So there is something in the title and artwork: Bands take heed!

I was initially quite impressed with Thunder Boogie; the first track, "Hot Wire," was a down-and-dirty rock n' roll song. It had my head bobbing right from the start, and my brain rattled by the end. It was followed by the slightly less-energetic "Vegas," which I had a really hard time deciding if I really enjoyed the song or not. I literally changed the ranking of this song four or five times, before settling on a '5 Star' ranking by the end of the fifth track on the album. That song was succeeded by "I Saw Red," an equal step-down in energy as it's predecessor was from the previous, but this time, much more well delivered. Right from the get-go I had something that was kicking my ass (even with the rough patches)!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Albums Listened To In February (48)

This month's list:

  1. Andrew W.K. - I Get Wet
  2. Bigelf - Cheat The Gallows
  3. The Black Box Revelation - My Preception - New
  4. The Black Keys - Attack & Release
  5. Blind Guardian - Nightfall In Middle Earth
  6. Buddy Revell - Bring Forth The Snake (EP) - New
  7. Cinder - Break Your Silence
  8. Cinder - House Full of No Trust
  9. Cirith Ungol - Frost And Fire - New
  10. Cirith Ungol - King of The Dead - New
  11. Cirith Ungol - One Foot In Hell - New
  12. Cirith Ungol - Paradise Lost - New
  13. Cloudkicker - Let Yourself Be Huge - New
  14. Cloudkicker - Loop - New
  15. Clutch - Strange Cousins From The West
  16. Crippled Black Phoenix - I, Vigilante
  17. The Decemberists - The Hazards of Love
  18. Eluveitie - Helvetios - New
  19. Enos - Chapter 1
  20. EYE - Center of The Sun - New
  21. Fifty Foot Woman - Fifty Foot Woman - New
  22. Lou Reed - Rock 'N' Roll Animal
  23. The J. Geils Band - The J. Geils Band - New
  24. The J. Geils Band - "Live" Full House - New
  25. The J. Geils Band - The Morning After - New
  26. James Blunt - All The Lost Souls - New
  27. James Blunt - Some Kind of Trouble - New
  28. Jeff Loomis - Zero Order Phase
  29. Goblin Cock - Bagged And Boarded
  30. Goblin Cock - Come With Me If You Want To Live
  31. Mechanical Poet - Handmade Essence (EP)
  32. Necromandus - Orexis of Death - New
  33. Night Sun - Mournin' - New
  34. Ozzy Osbourne - Bark At The Moon
  35. Root Spirits - Long Road Ahead (EP)
  36. S:T Erik - From Under The Tarn
  37. sHEAVY - Blue Sky Mind
  38. Sleestack - Altrusian Moon: A Lo-Fi Collection Of Psychedelia and Space Rock - New
  39. Stonebride - Inner Seasons
  40. Stonebride - Summon The Waves
  41. Uriah Heep - Demons & Wizards
  42. Various Artists - The Wall Re-Built (2 Discs)
  43. The Velvet Underground - The Velvet Underground And Nico
  44. The Velvet Underground - White Light/White Heat
  45. Wench - Wench (EP) - New
  46. Whores of Tijuana - Psycholongevity
  47. Whores of Tijuana - Whores of Tijuana
  48. Wino - Punctuated Equilibrium

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Albums Listened To In January (52)

Now that I'm back from my self-imposed exile, I really don't know why I couldn't have at least kept up with the 'Albums Listened To' posts. I'm still getting back into the game, regaining my chops (both for typing so much and my attention span to one project), and struggling to keep it going, but so far so good. I'm going to do my best to keep The Guide updated at least weekly - it's the least I could do for all of your continued support!

The Good
I really enjoyed listening to Ape Machine's two albums; their blend of stoner and funky grooves was entertaining and uplifting, guaranteeing them some future replay time. Brant Bjork's various solo acts ('true' solo, with The Bros, and then The Operators) is always worth the listen, and I finally got around to finishing off his discography.

The Bad
After hearing so much positive mention of Acrimony over the years, I really expected something better then what was offered from their two releases; their second album, Tumuli Shroomaroom, had some positives to it, but overall I was disappointed. Both Birch Hill Dam and Camion have the same faults to their music: they are in the groovy-sludge school of stoner which has the needlessly screamed lyrics. Birch Hill Dam had some more reasonably calm songs in its collection, but Camion was nothing but the full bellows of the singer's lungs. Not to my tastes. Bruner was another band/singer that really wasn't for my musical tastes; apparently it was a demo/uncompleted recordings of some singer from the 70s, Linda Bruner (apparently the lead singer from some group called Piscis), that was just recently released (2010). It's a soulful, single-guitar-and-voice EP, but the recording quality isn't great, and frankly, Bruner's vocals aren't all that skilled; if it had been longer then twenty minutes, I probably wouldn't have listened to it all. Find better folk elsewhere.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

New Album: Crippled Black Phoenix - (Mankind) The Crafty Ape

With a band like Crippled Black Phoenix, I know of no way to accurately describe their sounds - both off past albums as well as current ones. Their music is different on each release, but somehow keeping the core 'feel' of CBP all the same. If I had to make a stab at labeling them (as I've attempted before), they are a blend of post-metal, ambient sounds, doom, and folk, into an one-of-a-kind sound.

I put Crippled Black Phoenix's release last year, I, Vigilante, on my 'Top 20 of 2010', a choice I still stand behind. While their earlier albums had a slight problem of uniformity (songs were often jarring in combination with the album as a whole), I, Vigilante was a much more accomplished work. I think this is due to the smaller track-listing off that album then the others, with only six songs while most of their other releases are over ten. This more concise selection, 'trimmed the fat' of their previous releases, with little truly ambient songs and sections then otherwise seen, and it is in this direction I hoped the band would have followed.

Friday, November 25, 2011

The Klepto's Back!!

Ok, I know I've said it before, but I'm back baby!

I'm working with some others to create a new project: Pop It & Rock It (it's still in it's infancy so go easy), which will get me back into the swing of writing and reviewing. The new website will have a wider scope of the entire rock genre - from pop to metal - with yours truly in charge of all things heavy. With that in mind, I'll be double posting, with every heavy review on PI&RI also appearing on The Guide, and several older articles from here appearing on the new project.

The articles/reviews won't be daily here, like they were, instead a few times a week - something more manageable - but eventually I hope to have Pop It & Rock It posting daily, once everyone involved is more used to reviewing/writing. I encourage you to check out the new site, if only for the added support, but if you end up finding something you like, something you've never heard of before, then I think my job is done. My plan with the wide scope and multiple genres is to expose people to as many new things as possible - I myself don't like pop/pop-rock very much, but I still find myself enjoying the occasional song that comes on the radio at work. So please, shoot a quick look that a-way if you have a free moment.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Albums Listened To In June

Ok, this is a long time coming, I've been enjoying my vacation just a little too much it seems. The end of the month encluded a week or two of vacation time, so many of these albums were while in the air or traveling by car; a trend that will continue within the following month. I'm still working on this month's (July) articles and the new project with some friends, we'll see if it ever becomes anything worthwhile.

Monday, June 27, 2011

New Band: KONG!

Wow, this band is a punch in the face. I've been listening to a lot of classic and alternative rock lately and switching to something this heavy and crushing was a bit of a surprise. KONG! is a group hailing from North Carolina which seems to want to bring the balls back to underground metal.

As far as I can tell, Mind Eraser is KONG!'s debut EP - I say as far as I can tell because there are at least another half-a-dozen bands out there with that name - and it's an amazing start. While the other reviews I saw qualify the band within the hardcore bracket of music, I'm leaning to more of a New Wave of American Heavy Metal feel. There is some shouting, but it's more guttural then true screams that would go with hardcore. The music itself is more metal then punk, which would move it to metalcore I believe (I think I'm getting this right, I am not a fan of anything -core titled usually), but I still don't see it. The songs are too varied, too filled with ups and downs. Mind Eraser, while filled with energetic music, is not overwhelming with the sound or frantic as much hardcore acts I have heard. They are much more groove-oriented then punk.

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Yes, I am still here, and I have every intention of coming back.

First, now that I've had a break, I'm going to try and get at least sort of caught up with all of the albums I've been sent by The Ripple Effect (great site, check them out if you haven't already) and the random band submissions. I know I'll never get 100% caught up because more are coming in every day, but I'm going to at least make an attempt at the mounting pile I have in front of me. I leave for vacation in a few days, but I should be able to get at least a handful done before then.

I've started getting the writing itch, which is good, it's what I want. A return of the want to write would be grande for me at this point.

Secondly, while I don't think I'll ever bring The Guide back to it's former glory, I am working with a group of musically-minded individuals on a new project of sorts. This one will be more varied in musical scope, with all forms of rock accepted. I'll keep doing my metal thing, and I have one or two more partners in this project that also enjoy them some heavy, so there will be something there for you all to enjoy. It will just be mixed in with more accessible music for the masses. Fear not, I will keep up both sites to the best of my ability, with each getting unique articles from yours truly (but also a lot of crossover). We are looking at an end of July start-up for that one, so when I get it all up and running I'll make sure to inform all of you to that.

Thank you to all of you for your patience and understanding, I have gotten a few comments and emails and that feels great; makes me feel like I'm making a difference in some way. Gotta throw a shout-out to That Devil Music and Captain Beyond Zen for their help as well, some more great sites to read while you're waiting for me to get off my lazy ass.


Monday, June 20, 2011


As I'm sure some of you noticed, I did not post anything today. I wrestled with it all morning, I certainly had the time, but not the drive. With that, I have to put The Klepto's Guide To Awesome Music on temporary hiatus, at least compared with how it is currently handled.

I do not do this lightly, but as of late The Guide has become homework, which is not what I want at all. I used to look forward to listening to brand new and obscure albums, writing about what I heard, and generally spreading the good word. I used to be able to bang out half a dozen articles in a full day, key word - used to. Currently, I am writing articles hours before they post, that and a full work load is running me ragged. I have to change something and The Guide is the easiest.

I'm not going away totally, I'll still post time to time; bringing this website back to what it was for the first year or two, I post when I feel strongly about and album or act, not because I feel I have too. I think that my articles have been watered down and pretty shitty overall recently. I have been self-imposing deadlines that require quantity over quality, going back to writing whenever I feel like it will hopefully bring back some of the quality that I think The Guide has been lacking.

Also, I am talking with a couple of friends (once again) about writing here part time. This group actually seems into it, so if we can figure something out, something substantial and meaningful, then I will bring back the daily posts. But for now, for at least the week (and another because I am going on vacation for 8 days), I am effectively putting this blog on hold, focusing on other things, listening to music I actually want to listen to, not bands that I feel I have to listen to.

If you want to keep submitting albums, I am a whore for new music, so I will keep taking them. Also if you would like to be brought in on the new and improved Guide, whenever I get around to restarting it, please drop me a line, more the merrier.

For now, I bid you all adieu (that's French for goodbye).

Saturday, June 18, 2011

EP Shakedown: Bandito - I & II

For this week's 'EP Shakedown' I'm going to double up with a pair of EPs released by Bandito, aptly titled Bandito I and Bandito II (or just I and II but I like having the name there). You can download their most recent EP from their website, or get their entire discography (these two EPs and a single) from their BandCamp page. So snag some free music, give it a listen and read on.

Bandito treads between a couple different sounds within the stoner genre. Their first EP opens with "For No One" which is close to the harshness of Hermano or the raw sound of Kyuss' early works (wow a stoner band that sounds like Kyuss). The following song, "Trent Boyett," is something much more groove oriented. I do have to laugh because "Trent Boyett" seems like an obvious homage to a South Park episode, I'm not 100% but it seems to be about a child always in trouble, which sums up the episode pretty well. The other two songs of the album are in a more sludgy realm, being more down-tuned and rough-vocaled (but not too growly). "Killing Black" and "Cubic Cycle" are both decent, but I definitely like their more groove/funk songs more.

Video: The Tossers - "Good Mornin' Da"

I was jamming out to The Valley of The Shadow of Death today and thought that "Good Mornin' Da" would make a great addition to my weekly video section. I really love The Tossers' style of Celtic punk; incorporating some slower melodies and blues. Not so much on this song, but on several others. I'd suggest checking them out.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Weekly Dose of Prog: Yes - The Yes Album

The Yes Album is a disc that I grew up with; my mother had this one and Yes' greatest hits sense I was a wee babe. Needless to say I could describe this album in vivid detail without actually listening to it again, but why deprive myself of the experience? It has been a while.

Looking at the tracklist before actually beginning listening I immediately recognize family favorites, "Yours Is No Disgrace," "Starship Trooper," and "I've Seen All Good People." Each of these I can sing along with and could probably manage the majority of the song without any music accompaniment. With those three alone (of six), I know I will enjoy this album as a whole. However, as I listen through it, I'm reminded of how great this album truly is.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

New Album: Black Stone Cherry - Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea

I'm a tad apprehensive listening to Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea, Black Stone Cherry's latest album; their debut was amazing, completely top-notch southern stoner metal. It was full of creative songs, powerful is story and vocals, with some amazing instruments to match. The followup, Folklore And Superstition, was a dull, alternative rock with a touch of southern twang release. All the originality of their was gone, and we were left with an empty shell of, what I assume to be, an attempt at being accepted by the majority of the populous. So I am both excited and dismissal of Black Stone Cherry's newest release, hoping that it is a reminder of their origin, not their evolution.

This new incarnation of Black Stone Cherry's sound seems a bit of a pairing of the previous two mentions. It is a little more rough and tumble, and there by a little more metal, but in the same token, it is still filled with obvious song hooks and melodies. The music is entertaining, but nothing is really outstanding or challenging to the listener. There are enjoyable songs, but nothing that made me go "wow, that was cool," or anything that makes me want to show off a song to my friends. It's satisfying but not filling.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Play It Again: Arbouretum - The Gathering

I touched on Arbouretum a bit at the beginning of May, and having just listened to The Gathering again, I think they deserve another mention. I'd been listening to their cover of The Highwaymen ("The Highwayman") a lot recently, and I really enjoy it. The really laid back and spacey style is really well conveyed. It made me want to listen to their album as a whole over again, so that's what I did.

There is just something about David Heumann's voice (he's the singer, by the way) that really makes this record what it is. His cool, melodic-yet-monotone style just washes over you like a gentle silk sheet. I think he truly makes The Gathering an enjoyable record. Sure, they could have gotten another singer who may have been just as good, the music just as listenable, but with Heumann they have something special. I don't think this album sung any other way would be nearly as listenable.