Incredible to think that Binghamton and Brooklyn’s Cold Sweats formed only five months ago, yet here they are with full album in hand and living true to that punk DIY ethic where rock and roll really is for everyone, if you have the audacity to give it a go that is. What’s even more impressive, however, is the manner in which Cold Sweats set about their business by constructing a series of songs that contain a considerable amount of variation between the layers of punk rock, where influences range from indie, pop and surf rock, but ultimately Cold Sweats has managed to cultivate a sound that is uniquely their own. Evidence of this can be garnered from the opening song, ‘The Business’ that stretches out its message by means of wavering guitar noises and a sinister vocal that has a habit of lingering, before crossing paths and imploding in a crescendo of noise. Elsewhere, ‘Coney Island Cops’ is straining at the leash, full of snarling attitude via its vocal and backed with a real vicious edge by way of a razor-sharp guitar. It’s a definite short sharp jolt to the system, and one with a single finger salute to authority. As mentioned, rather than pursuing the formulaic route of a punk rock album, Cold Sweats continue the variation with the scathing sentiments of ‘Waste of a Day’, that comes complete with a jarring guitar riff and pounding drums that manages to wedge itself deep in the mind, and continue echoing there long after it’s finished. ‘Souvenir’ takes an immediate stranglehold via the guitar and pretty much continues its hold over the entire song, only to find next the vocal taking centre stage, or at least try, as it staggers about in what sounds like a drunken state, relaying fragments of disaffected lives during ‘Problem Kids’. With the album having been produced by Hunter Davidsohn and recorded in a destitute and abandoned area of Binghamton, which just happens to be home to Twilight Zone creator Rod Sterling, it’s no wonder that Cold Sweats became influenced, in part, by their surroundings, where a combination of an extremely raw punk sound, in addition to various aspects of post-hardcore, combined with darker and more eccentric influences such as The Cramps, for example, can be heard,. ‘Social Coma’ is an astute collection of ideas, compellingly executed, and one that stands (far) outside the usual formula and expectations when it comes to punk rock albums, which makes this long player one of the definite highlights of this year without any doubt.