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Keep Laughing: The Best of RKL


Mystic Records


RKL CD coverFrom Santa Barbara, RKL (Rich Kids on LSD) were one of the Nardcore bands centered around the skateboarding scene in Oxnard California.

Even though they are fre-formed and playing shows in 2005, this CD collects their best stuff - their first appearance on the 1984 Nardcore sampler 7inch, their 1984 EP It's A Beautiful Feeling (tracks 6-9 & 18-20) , and their Keep Laughing LP (tracks 1-5 & 12-17), relased in 1985.

The band lineup was

  • Vince Peppars -- bass
  • Chris Rest -- guitar
  • Bomber Manzullo -- drums
  • Jason Sears -- vocals

The music is SoCal hardcore from just before the metal influence entered all the bands' sound. The music slams along as intensely as Misfit's 1982 Walk Among Us LP.

There is a cover of Heartbreaker's Chinese Rocks, and several other songs on sililar topic. Ded Ted tells a story of a friend whose house was a crash pad it sounds like they hung out at a lot. Why? deals with addiction, and starts off with the Leonard Nimoy as Spock quote "They seem to be in a state identical to that curious 20th century Earth disease hard drug abuse." Why? is an excellent song - one of my faves on the disc. Pothead is a lighter song. It is both a celebration and condemnation of smoking all day. It is also one of my faves.

The best song is Think Positive . With its Keep Laughing bridge it is in effect the title song of the LP. The song inprires and gets you up and going.

The CD booklet has lyrics to all the songs and a nice story about the band's first recording session by Mystic Records owner Doug Moody. There are continuity breaks between songs 1 and 2, 6 and 7, and 13 and 14, and the sound of all these recordings is pure midrange, but even with these flaws, the disc is worth buying if you want all RKL's best stuff in one place.

Faves: 1,8,12,13,14,16,18

---Carl, May 24, 2005