GET SLEEPING IN THUNDER:
KITE SHOWS MAINSTREAM POTENTIAL ON “SLEEPING IN THUNDER.”
When approaching albums by local artists, you always try to keep expectations in check. Without backing from major record labels or the expertise of industry producers, nobody should expect a highly refined package.
Not to say local albums can’t be good. In many cases, independently produced albums have a more authentic sound to them. In a world where you need not be talented to have a hit record (Hello Britney Spears!), raw songs from uncorrupted artists can be a breath of fresh air.
Now that I’m finished explaining myself, the latest offering from local rockers Kite destroys all reasonable expectations of a local album. “Sleeping in Thunder” has the polish and gravitas of the best national stuff in the rock genre, without the artistic sacrifices often found on mainstream releases.
Comprised of Monte Thompson on lead vocals and guitars, Michael Koep on drums and percussion, Scott Clarkson on lead guitars, and Mark Rakes on bass, Kite is an in-between rock band. Mixing acoustic sounds with hard rock guitar riffs, the songs on “Sleeping in Thunder” are all distinct from each other. Some are edgier, while others rely on softer melodies.
The album is uniformly well-produced, but the surprise here is the overall tightness on display. The members of Kite all highlight their abilities with various solos, but the songs themselves succeed because the individual pieces mold into a distinct sound.
The versatility of Thompson’s voice grabs the most singular attention here. He’s got the aggressive pipes of a hard rocker, but he pulls off tender melodies with equal skill. It allows Kite to shift tempos and moods, sometimes within a single song.
All of the songs feature intricate arrangements. Many songs open with patient instrumentals, allowing the music to breathe and develop. Some songs cruise over the five-minute mark, but there’s no fat here.
Koep’s lyrics aren’t literal or direct, but the poetic language intrigues more than frustrates. Songs like “If You Were Dead,” “The Right Regret” and the title track focus more intently on the two sides of a personality. In “If You Were Dead,” there’s disdain for the other side, with lyrics like, “That ugly voice inside of me/ you’d be silent/ if you were dead.” On “The Right Regret,” the relationship is more complicated. On it, Thompson sings, “I want to be the thing that screams are made of-the place where the thrill began.”
“Everything Magic” stands out because the “sappy love song” contains some fun little verses. Lyrics like “You are my do-re-mi,” “You are my potpourri,” and “You are my make believe” are the quirky, likable kind of sappy.
“Sleeping in Thunder” solidifies Kite’s reputation as one of the best local bands around. Ignoring them while they’re our little secret would be criminal.
–Tyler Wilson, Coeur d’Alene Press
STEER BY THE STARS
IF YOU WERE DEAD
SLEEPING IN THUNDER
THE CONS OF SHADE
UP TO THE DARK
THE RIGHT REGRET
Scott Clarkson: lead Guitar, Bass, vocals, sound effects.
Michael Koep: drums, cymbals, bass, vocals, acoustic guitar, mandolin, Rhodes piano, hand percussion, sound effects.
Monte Thompson: lead vocals, acoustic and electric guitars, synths.
Mark Rakes: bass guitar and vocals.
Greg White- bass guitar on If You Were Dead and The Cons of Shade
Laurie Wilson- backing vocals on If You Were Dead and Everything Magic
Cristopher Lucas- backing vocals on Up To The Dark and The Right Regret. Tambourine on The Right Regret.
Lyrics: Michael Koep
Music: Monte Thompson
Arrangements by Kite
Produced by Kite
Recorded at Playground Studios & TreeARC Studios Coeur d’Alene, ID
Engineered by Kite
Mixed by Michael Koep
Recorded over the winter of 2005-2006
Mastered by OasisCD
Album art, CD design and packaging by Mark Brown
Logo by Michael Koep
Those who’ve kept us happily awake :
Lisa Koep and Dani Mahoney. The Heren Sindaril. Michael and Jean Herzog. Stan and Jolynn Koep. Joe Lynch. Gabe Burdett. Jeff Hagman. Erin Beecham. Greg White. Guy Gighman & Anna Gonzales.. Jason Williamson. Gregg Johnston and LGD Design. Lisa-Smith Putnam at Integy Entertainment. Jake McClure. Cristopher Lucas. Dave & Heather Dupree. Bob Burdett. Doug Smith. Nick Wiebe. Mark Rakes. Cary Beare. Allison McCready. Bob and Bobbi and Bean (three-b). Darren and Shokie and the go-fast-mf- Grey Flame. Mark Brown. Calvin Langley. Jameson Sylte. Josh Beebe. Royce Turllotte. Tracy Williams. Siena Schmit. Darin Schaffer. Lee Haouk. Rob Christie. Rex Rhinaldi. Justin & Christine Pierson. Bob, Sharon. Mike and Tracy (and the little one on the way) at Elkins Resort. Splimbot Gogahnis. Scott Coleman.The Iron Horse corner table. Vince Hughes. Dan for the 2×4 barn. Chris Shivda at the Music Connection. Eric and Laurie Wilson. Michael Thompson. Ken and Diana Koep, Barbara Miller and Tami Clarkson. Welcome Mr. Mark Rakes.
©2006, Tripcat Songs, BMI / ©2008 Claytunes Music, BMI
All rights reserved.
Unauthorized duplication is a bad thing and your mom will know of it. It will also disrupt your sleep for years to come. So don’t.