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Orange Goblin's sound has changed from album to album, but never failed to impress. Their debut album, Frequencies from Planet Ten, was spaced-out stoner metal that frequently shifted from funky riffing to transcendental ambience. Since their previous album, Coup De Grace, they've left behind their dreamy visions of drug-filled landscapes and moved towards a harder-edged, heavy rocking sound.
Thieving from the House of God presents Orange Goblin at their rawest and most aggressive. No longer do the lyrics revolve around hazy drug-trips, but now the themes are whisky, broken bottles and hard living. The psychedelic groove has been toned back in favour of a more forceful approach, but the old Orange Goblin spirit is still alive and well.
The album is filled with catchy, hard-rocking numbers, with psychedelic lead guitars and the ragged vocals of Ben Ward. Highlights include Round Up The Horses, which is a crushingly heavy stoner metal track; closer Crown of Locusts, which shifts between thudding doom and gritty stoner rock; and Black Egg, which uses a female vocalist to interesting effect.
There are no real weakpoints, and there's even a solid ZZ Top cover thrown in for good measure. Orange Goblin may not be the most inspired band in the world, but they CAN rock, and playing this in front of your friends will reassure them of your masculinity (even if you happen to be of the female persuasion - I'm half-convinced listening to this album will actually make you sprout a fine pair of testicles).
The major flaw of the album is a lack of diversity, especially as compared to their previous albums; this time around, they've picked a particular mood and relentlessly charged ahead with it. Still, what they've done they've done well, and if you're a fan of stoner rock/metal/doom you'll find something to like on Thieving From The House of God.