Home Read Albums Of The Week: Thelonious Monster | Oh That Monster

Albums Of The Week: Thelonious Monster | Oh That Monster

The underappreciated L.A. indie-rockers reappear with a killer comeback set.


THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: The Los Angeles rock band Thelonious Monster released Oh That Monster — their first album in 16 years — on Nov. 3 (U.S. Election Day).

The band say the record may be their best record ever as Thelonious Monster found the same passion in creating tracks as they did in 1984 when they first started. Oh That Monster was recorded by frontman and lead singer Bob Forrest, Chris Handsome and Dix Denney on guitar, Martyn LeNoble on bass guitar and Pete Weiss on drums. Says Forrest: “We all worked really hard. We are familiar with what it takes to be good. Make a great record. And we did it. I think we made maybe our best record ever. At 60 years old! Some of us decades out of playing music. I am so proud of what we did. It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Full circle as they say. Still angry. Still hurt. Still mad to laugh. Mad for living. We made this album. And it is us.”

The band explains that the United States Election Day was chosen as the release date for Oh That Monster, as they feel it brings together two of the most important things: the truly most important election of their lifetime and the most important record they have ever made: “I have been told since I was a kid this is the most important election of our lifetime every election. It was never true. But myself and the guys believe in our heart of hearts. This truly is the most important election of our lifetime. So what better thing to combine it with than the most important record we have ever made. Most significant, let’s say. That we are all still alive in 2020, if you know us, is a miracle in itself. That we can still rock is unheard of. But most importantly: that we are still excited to be alive. Still care about our planet, our country and people. These are just a few of the amazing gifts that sticking around has shown us.”

Disappear is the newest single and video from Oh That Monster. The official video for the song was directed by Pete Weiss and filmed / edited by Aaron Lemle. About the song, Forrest says: “Disappear is a song about death. When you die. You disappear. Too many of our friends have disappeared. It is in remembrance of them. And also a wake up call to ourselves and the listener. That this existence does end. Live life. Now. Don’t wait for tomorrow. Life is precious. Don’t waste time being a victim or a zombie. Open your eyes. Your heart. And open your mind to life! For someday you will disappear.”

The single follows up the release of Buy Another Gun, the first single to be lifted from the album. Buy Another Gun is the song that anchors Oh That Monster. It addresses that what all American parents deal with. Forrest explains: “How do we keep our kids safe from this hateful murderous madness that American schools have become? A school shooting seemingly every week all across the country. Arm our teachers? Bulletproof backpacks. The insanity of the conversations parents are having is unfathomable. But that’s what parents in America are talking about! The song shares the hate and the hope I feel about the safety for my children. For myself. And for what I believe is the beginning of a fallen empire.”

Thelonious Monster started in 1984 and released five albums: Baby… You’re Bummin’ My Life Out In A Supreme Fashion (1986), Next Saturday Afternoon (1987), Stormy Weather (1989), Beautiful Mess (1992) and California Clam Chowder (2004). They have performed with Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jane’s Addiction & Fishbone and played a notorious set at the Pinkpop Festival in the Netherlands.”