The Adicts are the longest running punk band with the original lineup in the world. First starting out as Afterbirth and the Pinz in 1975, then changing their names to the Adicts in ‘76, they seemed intent on zagging when the rest of the English punk hordes zigged. Opting for fun, humorous, and ironic songs (a la the Toy Dolls) instead of politics and class war, they were able to carve out a unique smiley face on punk’s back. Their history could easily be a Spinal Tap of punk rock. Early success. They got signed by a major. Got sucked dry. Released a new wave record. Got back on their own two feet, and keep plugging away. Almost thirty years down the road, they release an album of entirely new material. How is it? Okay. Instead of the fire in the belly of their first record, Songs of Praise, it seems that they’re more opting for a living room full of votive candles. The setting’s mostly subdued; the tempos are relaxed. There are even hints of ELO (“Men in Black”) and Lou Reed (“Cheese Tomato Man”). My favorite songs are very close to what the modern day Skulls are hammering out. Sure, the songs are still strange and wacky, but with a little tweak here and there, most of them could be used for Saturday morning cartoons. It isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s not exactly tweaking my nipples and making me want to smash parking meters, either.