The members of The Problems With Kids Today were born a few decades too late to have done any damage on the New York Punk and New Wave scene that brought together The Ramones, The Dead Boys, and Television but judging by their debut, Born To Rock, they would have slotted in nicely at CBGB’s and Max’s Kansas City.
The trio was founded four years ago in New Haven by singer/guitarist Tate Brooks, bassist Silas Lourenco Lang and drummer Reena Yu. Songs like the blistering “Rip It Off” and “Leather Jacket Blues,” leaning heavily into their punk influences, contrast nicely with tracks like “Johnny Rockets,” which favors a more dirty rock swagger like The Replacements and the Talking Heads-ish “What Else Could I Say.”
The band’s touchstones are still high energy and the lighting flash drumming and guitars regardless of what they’re playing, but they are able to show far more depth with their influences than many others in the genre. Expanding beyond the standard guitar/bass/drums combo, the band also added toy pianos, 12 string guitars, and synthesizers throughout.
The 11-track record was recorded in just over a week with producer Adam Lasus (Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Yo La Tengo, Juliana Hatfield) and despite the short time window, or maybe because of it, the songs come off as both immediate and cohesive.