Category: Social Distortion

Social Distortion – Prison Bound

ARTIST: Social Distortion Social_Distortion_-_Prison_Bound_cover

TITLE:  Prison Bound

YEAR RELEASED: 1988

CHART ACTION: None

SINGLES: Prison Bound

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Back Street Girl

LINEUP: Mike Ness, Dennis Danell, John Maurer, Christopher Reece

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Social Distortion returns from a long hiatus (thanks to Ness’ substance issues and jail stint) and records an album that has its moments, and sets them up for their 90’s success.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: There are flaws to this album. The production is muted and doesn’t give the band the snap it needs, and muffles Mike Ness’ vocals a bit. Because of that, many of the songs run together without a lot of differentiation.

There are some definite high spots here – especially the first side. That works well together, but the second half drags a bit. After the song “Prison Bound” concludes the first half it seems like a downhill slope from there.

Their next album would set them up to be a 90’s success – this one was a good one to get back in the game, though.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: “It’s the Law” is a re-write of an old tune of theirs from a complilation called “Justice for All”.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No

GRADE: B-: A few classic cuts, but better records would follow.

Social Distortion – Mommy’s Little Monster

ARTIST: Social Distortion  220px-Social_Distortion_-_Mommy's_Little_Monster_cover
TITLE: Mommy’s Little Monster
YEAR RELEASED: 1982
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Another State of Mind
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: The Creeps, Mommy’s Little Monster
LINEUP: Mike Ness, Dennis Danell, Brent Liles, Derek O’Brien.
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: First full length from the legendary So. Cal punk rockers finds them moving from hardfastrules into a mid-tempo motif on many songs. Still, the songs have bite.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: “The Creeps” which starts off this collection, is a typical So. Cal punk rock record at the time. Blasting guitars at a furious pace. It’s glorious. Yet, as this collection goes on, Ness and company slow down, but lose none of their intensity or bite.

It’s not that they’re dirges or anything. They just slow it down a bit, proving you don’t have to go 200 MPH to make effective punk rock. This allows Ness’ lyrics to sink in and grip you. It’s a short record (nine songs in less than a half hour) but most of the songs are effective enough you don’t notice the brevity of the album as a whole.

Bassist Liles, like most punk bassists, carries a lot of the melody and changes behind the guitar roars. Danell is a steady rhythm player, as he always was, and Ness’ leads and vocals work well with the arrangements. The only drawback is the production – due to time and money constraints (a usual refrain with punk rock) they had to rush into the studio and recorded this all in one shot. Still, it sounds pretty good for that kind of recording.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: After this record, Social Distortion went on tour, and then went on hiatus as Ness dove into addiction with full force.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No

GRADE: B+: Production aside, this could fit in well with any 80’s collection.