LA's Rough Kids peddle a sound firmly rooted in the late 1970s and early 1980s, being part rock'n'roll, part punk rock and part edgy new wave. On the first few listens I found it a bit too urgent and wasn't able to allow the songs to sink in, but fortunately my perseverance paid off and The State I'm In grew on me with its twelve tracks which are raw and ragged, yet tight and precise, leaving me caught hook, line and sinker.
Throughout this record I hear moments that remind of a host of bands from the eras above including the likes of Stiff Little Fingers, The Saints and The Rezillos to name but a few. The guitar work is choppy, with some well-placed leads that never take over the songs but manage to add something noteworthy to them, whilst the bass comes across as a continuous rumble rather than a collection of distinct and individual notes (there might be a name for such a style but I'm not a musician so you'll have to forgive me) which is highly effective. The drumming isn't too expansive but it clearly does what Is required of it in tandem with the four strings, in keeping the engine moving at a good pace. On top of all this, the vocals really provide the icing on the cake in terms of being the perfect match for the music