Social Distortion

Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes (Epitaph)

ACL Music Fest Sunday Reviews

Social Distortion

Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes (Epitaph)

Mommy's favorite little SoCal monsters may have slowed their personal tempos a fraction, but this seventh studio album proves you can take the man out of the punk but you can't take punk outta Mike Ness. The leather-hided and Jack-'n'-Coke-voiced Ness has only improved with age, like a '59 Chevy ragtop with growler pipes. Instrumental "Road Zombie" opens flat-out badass, zero-to-light speed in 2:21, but it's Jonny Wickersham's buzz saw guitar duals with Ness on criminally evil "Machine Gun Blues" and the Stonesy "California (Hustle and Flow)," which recall the Social D of yore. "Diamond in the Rough" drops things back down into second gear with no less snarl and sneer before two-lane blisterer "Can't Take It With You" punches the turbo and blows your fancy speakers. Ain't nothing fancy about these nursery rhymes, just blaze-of-glory guitars and busted-dream lyricism from the jailbait-tight godfathers of melodic punk squawk. (7:30pm, Honda stage)

***

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Social Distortion
ACL Live Shots
Social Distortion

Richard Whittaker, Sept. 23, 2011

More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
Xetas
The Cypher (Record Review)

Rachel Rascoe, Feb. 21, 2020

Texas Platters
Martian Warlords
Area 69 (Record Review)

Tim Stegall, Jan. 3, 2020

More by Marc Savlov
Green Ghost and the Masters of the Stone
Texas-made luchadores-meets-wire fu playful adventure

April 29, 2022

Unplugging
Technology and a lack of laughs get in the way of this rom-com

April 22, 2022

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Social Distortion

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Behind the scenes at The Austin Chronicle

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle