I don't like press.

That's not to say I don't like the people who organise a band's press. Tom, for example, who works for a company called Ilikepress, is a very accommodating chap. He's efficient, cheerful, and he sorted me out with everything I could possibly need to review Electric Picture Palace, the debut full length from (and also swansong of) Leeds quartet Holy State. He responded to all my requests with alacrity, and generally made my function as a writer that much easier. So thanks, Tom. And, ah, sorry, I guess.

Holy State, it is written, are a band about tone and intent. On listening to Electric Picture Palace, it's very difficult to argue with the former statement. If it doesn't quite have time to sink in on rocketfuelled liftoff 'Ride', then it's hard to ignore in the opening clang of the following title track, and from then on until the closing chime/bash tradeoff of 'Age of ADHD'. Holy State care a lot about how their instruments sound, and they've done a marvelous job of capturing this on Electric Picture Palace, forming those sounds into lean bursts of barbed indie rock, something like …Trail of Dead if they replaced the longwinded psychedelic passages with a touch of Hot Snakes' punk swagger. The noisemongers' intent, however, is dampened in their presentation.

There's nothing wrong with being a tone junkie. Valves sound a lot nicer that solid state. But the way in which Electric Picture Palace and Holy State are framed (to a writer, at least) holds us at arm's length. All the PR's reference to tone, loudness and warmth, and some of the hippest punk labels of the last few decades verges on smug. No one's saying that Holy State don't really love tone or the bands on Dischord, Swami, and Touch and Go (or indeed that these are bad things), but it's so blindingly obvious from the their sound that reiterating it ad nauseam unfairly colours Holy State elitist. Where some of the best bands on the aforementioned rosters found their effect through intimate emotional connection, Holy State's cryptic lyricisms (and equally cryptic track-by-track guide) come across much more aloof in this context, rubbing their saintliness as regards influence and methodology in our faces.

Which is why I don't like press. I get the point – provide a neat summary for the hypothetical hack who's too uninterested or lazy to properly engage with a record he's been sent – but the buzzword avalanche gets offputting, to the point where it takes the shitkicking chorus of 'Solid State Messiah', toward the close of Electric Picture Palace, to shake all these notions loose and set me actually listening to Holy State's songs again.

Luckily, Electric Picture Palace is rammed to busting with slow-release hooks and motifs that only start to sink in on repeat listens, the bargain struck between emotion and artfulness. It's there in the joyful childish 'yeah!'s on 'Ride', the horn blasts that kickstart 'Brain Caves', or the sexy as hell vocal interplay at the close of 'Dreamboat'. While it's maybe not quite as warm as Holy State's dedication to the sacred valve might have you believe, Electric Picture Palace's thorny tendrils will exert a tight grip around your frontal lobe, given the proper time. Just ignore the press.