“Fuel Yer Delusion vol. 4” is the new album from Chicago-Based self-described Grounge band, The Mutts. Opening the album is “America’s Next Top Something, Pt. 1” which clearly represents a blend of gunge and lounge in which the Mutts live up to the expectation set by their mashup conceit. It’s a fun listen, though may take someone new to the Mutts a few repeats to process. Track two, “Everyone is Everyone,” nudges a bit closer to a mainstream alt-rock vibe, but only a bit. The Mutts have a distinctive sound that carries through the entire album, proudly declaring their distinctive style with every note and beat. Track three, “Real Good Boy,” slows things down a bit with a darkly creeping tune about stealing someone else’s man. Track four, “Like Mama,” continues the low-fi, genre-bending aural assault with masterful aplomb. Track five, “I’m Trying” budges closer to straightforward alt-rock by way of psychedelic experience. The song is darkly trippy with a hint of blues influence. Track six, “America’s Next Top Something Pt. 2,” revisits the lyrical content of the opening song, but this time set to twisted carnival music in a rather brilliant presentation. Track seven, “Shake It Up,” is an upbeat, offbeat good time rocker that comes off like the love child of a Vegas-era Elvis tune and early MU 330. It’s incredible fun. Track eight, “Bread,” keeps the pace up, bringing a touch of that blues influence back for a truly bizarre explosion of excitement. Track nine, “Proof,” slows things back down and drowns everything in a heavy distortion reminiscent of Soundgarden. It’s a potent, driving tune that will get the heart pumping. Track ten, “People,” takes another psychedelic, mind-bending journey, this time experimenting with dialogue samples in addition to the masterfully off-kilter instrumentation. Track eleven, “Stone” is reminiscent of Tom Waits wailing over the darkest 8-bit video game soundtrack you’ve ever heard. Track twelve, “Black Ties and Diamonds” swerves back toward the mainstream with a relatively straightforward bluesy rock tune that shows that the band is equally adept being traditional or experimental. The album wraps up with track thirteen, “America’s Next Top Something Pt. 3,” which is a more directly lounge-inspired variation on the theme explores in parts 1 and 2. It makes for a solid ending note to the album and is a fun listen.
“Fuel Yer Delusion vol. 4” is a bold, brilliant, boundary shattering, genre-defining album. While it is certainly not for everyone, everyone should give it a shot. Best case scenario: you will fall in love with the Mutts. Worst case: you’ll certainly hear something you’ve never heard before. I give “Fuel Yer Delusion vol. 4” eight out of ten stars.