All too often in punkland (or at least the dark and sordid world of punk reviews), words like “gritty” and “raw” are just synonyms for “Man, this recording sounds like shit.” State Run actually makes that grittiness work for them—the dirty recording serves them perfectly. Jagged, bright guitar riffs serve as the launching pad, drums that sound like someone’s pissed off and punching through cardboard keep everything tethered to the ground, and the result is something that’s wholly tense and nerve-wracking. And I mean that as a compliment. It’s like a mixture of Yage or some other long-lost ‘90s Ebullition band and groups like Science Of Yabra’s heavy, weird, wall-like riffs that carry the whole song along. I admire bands that don’t go for the easy plays, the obvious chord progressions or song structures. Bands that delve a little bit deeper and come up with something, like State Run has, that’s serrated and mean and smart, that keeps the listener stuck in this place that’s somewhere between wanting to tap your foot and wanting to just geek out to its anxiousness and this sense of creeping apprehension. So, yeah, Paralysis is gritty and raw as all get out, utilizing the terms “edgy” and “nervous” to the fullest. A fine record.
–keith (Rat Patrol)