Ted McCloskey's 4th album, Technicolor Thieves, is a superior distillation of all of his previously recorded output into one expertly lobbed, angry, blast of angst, anxiousness, and loud guitars. The album is a potent slice of not-so-thinly veiled disgust about pop culture, politics and the toll it takes on an observer who happens to write fantastic pop songs. As McCloskey himself explains in the very insightful liner notes; "Technicolor Thieves is about imprisonment. It's about abandonment and isolationism. It's about recognizing a problem and not having the faintest idea how to improve the situation. It loiters between resentment and retreat." McCloskey's writing has always been full of this sort of tug-and-pull anguish, but over the span of his last album, Who's Gonna Listen Anyway and now Technicolor Thieves, The writing has gotten more specific, more pointed, and more undeniably pissed off. Whether he's tackling the current political malaise on "Out With the Old Queens," Drinking In Tonight," or "Wait, Wait," or the state of one's own drowsy acceptance in "Zombie For Rent" or the insanely catchy, Maybe Just Maybe, it's all clearly driven by the familiar clever quirkiness of McCloskey's writing and his "bordering on pop encyclopedia level" sensibilities. Technicolor Thieves ranks as McCloskey's most consistent CD, AND THAT IS SAYING SOMETHING given the extreme high quality, savvy pop-smarts of his past productions. The guitars bite and snarl as always, and they are layered and in-your-face, while some of the quieter songs have the newly found intricacies that suggest, but don't ape, the great songwriter/guitarists that have influenced him. Truly, on Technicolor Thieves, this musical growth has enabled McCloskey to truly assimilate all of his influences (stones, dylan, replacements, smiths, beatles, xtc, faces, clash, kinks, velvet underground, rem) into his own unique sound and style. Perhaps McCloskey says it best and most simply in the liner note description for the beautiful "Being Still:" "For some people, remaining still is the hardest thing to do." For Ted McCloskey, being still and staying in the same place, musically, is not an option.