Sound — 9
Stealing Carolina's debut album is filled with awesome guitar-riffs and catchy vocal melodies. Jose Jimenez recorded all the instruments and vocals for the album in his own 2 bed-room apartment in Olympia, Washington. There is no doubt that this album was heavily influenced by early time grunge band Nirvana and at some points earlier Foo Fighters/Queens Of The Stone Age. At times, the song-writing can be compared to Jose's idol, Benjamin Burnley of Breaking Benjamin. The CD is raw, rough, and real, but at the same time clean-cut smooth. A must have if you like Nirvana/Foo Fighters/QOTSA. Overall the CD is impressive and creative, and many would call this CD a demo, but to me, it's an album. Pure and simple, it tops anything coming out in Olympia/Tacoma. One of my top 10 favorite "New CD's of the Year".
Lyrics — 8
Jose Jimenez lyrics are fantastic through out this whole album, especially in songs like "AudioBuddy" and "Little Did I Know". The words fall perfectly within the songs, there is hardly any mistakes. The music and lyrics compliment one-another, and in most cases, for example, "The Black Cat" would not be as powerful of a song without those haunting lyrics and melody. You can definitely tell that Jose did not use any sort of software to enhance his vocals, with this in mind, Jose left himself vulnerable and I tip my hat to him, not many artist, indie/professional would not even sing into a microphone if they didn't have a pitch-correcting program. Jose has a strong and unique voice that will be easily recognizable. In the future, I expect greater improvements by Jose, and I know he won't disappoint in his next album.
Overall Impression — 10
The album is not perfect, which I like. It's pure Rock & Roll. The imperfections make this album even greater than most hyper-produced records. Stealing Carolina is a band that I'll keep my eye on and expect a lot from in the future. Jose is a true musical genius and a skillful singer/songwriter. Recommended tracks, "AudioBuddy" "Little Did I Know", "Good Enough To Know You" and "U.F.O.".