Exposé Online banner

Buckethead — Monsters and Robots
(CyberOctave COCD 47499, 1999, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2000-10-01

Monsters and Robots Cover art

For readers of superhero comics, the Origin issue was always a treat. How did Radioman develop the ability to project radio waves from his eyes? How did Buckethead get his name and strange persona? On Monsters and Robots, the faceless guitar superhero presents a set of tunes based on his favorite obsessions, those named in the title, and includes “The Ballad of Buckethead,” in which he explains (via Les Claypool’s warped vocals) how he grew up in a chicken coop and learned to play the guitar as an escape from the horror of his life. His musical MO features more of his full-on shred playing than the quieter reflective sounds. Aided mostly by his Primus friends Claypool on bass and Brain on drums (along with bits from Bootsy Collins and Bill Laswell), the masked one cranks through a number of insanely manic instrumentals full of tricky twists and turns, like a speed-metal band genetically grafted onto a Funkadelic clone and given the mind of an evil genius from a B movie. “Stick Pit” features some fun R2-D2 synth noises, and “Sow Thistle” has some great free-form rapping. Throughout, Buckethead’s amazing fretwork provides a bounty of, well, amazing sounds. My only complaint is that his solos tend to all sound alike, impressive though they are.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 20, 1999 releases

Related artist(s): Les Claypool, Brian Patrick Carroll (Buckethead / Death Cube K), Bill Laswell

Latest news

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more

2020-04-23
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Djam Karet - Collaborator – Finally, the wait is over. Three years after the awe-inspiring double release of Burning the Hard City and Suspension & Displacement, America's premier progressive ensemble have returned, but...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues