After last year's somewhat disappointing Talent Night at the Ashram, Sonny & the Sunsets have returned to the warped playfulness of their earlier releases with Moods Baby Moods.

The band have always been genre-jumping shapeshifters, mixing it up with garage, melted psychedelia, doo-wop, and even country. Here, they stretch out and explore mutated forms of funk on 'Well But Strangely Hung Man', mix dubby post-punk with a string quartet on 'Modern Age', and sandwich a nod to the Suicide classic 'Ghost Rider' in-between synth-y post-punk and psych-tinted acoustics on 'Nightmares'.

The kind of looseness and warped humour that made their previous albums so much fun is present once again, and it lends a necessary balance to Sonny Smith's otherwise serious themes of trying to make sense of the chaos, suffering, and cruel realities of the modern age. 'Modern Age' confronts computer created confusion; 'Dead Meat on the Beach' tackles climate change; 'White Cops on Trial' examines the ever-growing issue of civil rights abuse. Smith's observations are insightful, full of emotional depth, but never overly complex. It's that combination that has always made them so appealing, and it also makes this their strongest release since Antenna to the Afterworld.