This afternoon we are proud to present, for all the messed-up children of this world, the debut offering from the Children of the State; a band of self-described ‘peyote punks’ who are so enamoured with the notion of freewheeling that they could have been torn from a page of On The Road and no one would be any the wiser. Comprised of John McCullagh, Nathan Keeble, Conor O’Reilly and Corey Clifton, their EP, Kill Your Darlings, is a brilliantly solid trip through the minds of four individuals who more than anything, enjoy the looser, wilder aspects of our culture.
Rather than detonating on impact, Children Of The State seem more concerned with infiltrating the mind through a series of decadent, well-informed morsels that bury in the brain before you realise what’s happening. They mesh the methods of their forefathers so well that the EP is gloriously tight, never pissing around with one style for too long, like stepping into a weirdly wonderful, well-curated vintage shop. For 12 minutes, there’s a whole palette of sounds and textures to play with from the title track’s blissed-out crooning through to the abrasive, Damned-inspired ‘Miss America, May I’, ending on the aptly-titled, ‘The Afterglow’, an oracular slow jam, that much like the name suggests, instils a sense of fulfilment, completeness, and general wellbeing that one feels after the effects of a psychoactive drug have faded.
The band like to dabble in subversiveness and their name itself derives from what Kim Jong Un calls the people of North Korea and what the FBI dubbed the Manson Family in 1960’s Hollywood but ultimately, Kill Your Darlings, is doused in romance. It looks misty-eyed at the frontier spirit of the Beat Generation, gazes longingly at Jim Morrison’s prophetic nature and is indebted to Spacemen 3’s opiated haze – and hey, thats just what can be discerned through the band’s Instagram posts.
To add colour to character, the EP was recorded at ChampZone studios, owned by the Fat White Family’s Nathan Saoudi and located across the street from Sheffield’s most famous brothel, City Sauna. Nathan, who produced the EP, brought in Mysteron’s Jack Howorth to engineer and Dean Honer of The Moonlandingz/Eccocentric Research Council to master the tracks. Collectively, it embodies all the most interesting and creative units of Sheffield’s current music scene to create what is genuinely, a beautiful listen. Now, give the anarchists a cigarette.