Whilst writing this a quick look out of the window tells me that it is another wet, grey and miserable day in Hatfield. Not the prefect scene you want to see when listening to any Social Distortion, a band whose music conjures up images of hot sunny days, new album Hard Times And Nursery Rhymes included. This is classic sounding Social Distortion readymade for chilling on long summer days, perhaps the soundtrack to a road trip in the middle of the summer festival season or down an L.A street, not a cold mid January afternoon.
Not straying from their signature sound combining punk rock with country and even rock-a-billy influences, this album shows signs of their subtle versatility. Gimme The Sweet And Lowdown, California and Still Alive being prime examples of that good old SD stomp, combined as normal with Mike Ness’ down but uplifting lyrics on hard times. The album also has, not quite ballads but certainly slower numbers, such as Writing On The Wall and album highlight Bakersfield. A very strong album that sits comfortably with their previous work, Hard Times And Nursery Rhymes, although not a classic album is a very good listen and sets 2011 off on a really good start. Now to wait and see how it sounds in the hot, sunny summer.
Recommended: Bakersfield, Gimme The Sweet And Lowdown.