CD Review: Mutts “Stick Together”

Singer-songwriter and piano player Mike Maimone and founding member of the band Mutts found his voice as a musician while living in his home state of Ohio. While he was in the Buckeye State, Maimone honed his craft as musician and writer releasing one album under his own name. In late 2008, Maimone put out his only solo album entitled Open Mic Nights, Empty Bottle Mornings.

 
Within one year after the release of that album, however, Mike Maimone found himself making a new home for himself in the city of Chicago. In that city, Maimone would befriend other Chicagoans and together, they would form the three-piece band called Mutts, a band that has been described as “if Tom Waits fronted a garage band”. Since the inception of that band, Mutts has created and released several albums and EPs. Mutts, a band that consists of Mike Maimone on vocals, piano, organ; Bob Buckstaff on guitar and Chris Pagnani on drums is currently celebrating the release of their newest EP. That five-song release is entitled Stick Together.

 
Stick Together, the newest release from Mutts, begins with the track “I’ll Be Around”. A song that says it doesn’t matter who you are or who you love, “I’ll Be Around” is a track that blends a romantic message with a rather strong musical approach. Where most romantic tracks would be soft and pretty, “I’ll Be Around” has a powerful backbone to go along with the reassuring lyrics about being who you are. The track has an infectious melody that is very listener-friendly but is still strong enough to be a solid radio-friendly single.

 
The new release from Mutts continues with the track “Neighbor”. In much the same way as the previous track, “Neighbor” is a track that features a strong message. Where “I’ll Be Around” says love is stronger than hate, “Neighbor” is a track that makes it clear that if you accept me for who I am, we will get by. And while the two tracks have very similar lyrical content, “Neighbor” steps it up a notch as the track has a much stronger and harder feel to the Rock and Roll music that accompanies the track’s powerful lyrics. To add just a bit of softness to the track, Mutts are joined by fellow musician and Chicagoan Jennifer Hall as she some harmony to the lyrics of the track.

 
One of the strongest and most commercial tracks on the five-song release entitled Stick Together is the song “Let’s Go”. While most of the music created by Mutts is piano-oriented and features Mike Maimone’s piano playing, “Let’s Go” shows off a slightly different side to the band. “Let’s Go” is a track that features the guitar playing of Bob Buckstaff as the main instrument. The guitar creates a different sound and feel to the band’s music…at least for one track. The song also features a strong groove and a call-and-response feel to the background vocals on the track. “Let’s Go” would easily translate well to a live setting.

 
To go along with the guitar-driven feel of “Let’s Go,” Mutts includes the track “Tin Foil Hat,” another track that features the playing of guitarist Bob Buckstaff. The track shows off the less serious side of the band as the track’s lyrics deal with conspiracy theories. The track’s lyrics suggest getting a “tin foil hat” in order to keep people from listening in on your thoughts. While the lyrics are rather fun, so is the music to the track. The band creates a track that has a strong beat that dares you to get up and dance. “Tin Foil Hat” seems to be fun on many different levels.

 
The newest release from Mike Maimone and the rest of the boys comes to an end with the song “Don’t Touch It”. On this song, the band creates a track that has a sound that brings back the feel of straight-out Rock and Roll songs from the eighties. The timeless feel of the track comes with lyrics that suggest that you keep your hands to yourself. “Don’t Touch It” is a strong track with a fun feel to the music that helps bring the short release to an end on a strong note.

 
The newest release from Chicago-based band Mutts called Stick Together shows off the group’s ability to create fun songs that ultimately have a meaning to them. The result is a Rock and Roll release that starts strong, ends strong, and could be a lot longer.

 

To help promote the album, Mutts has released the track “I’ll Be Around” as a single and video. Click HERE to check out the video. 

 

To check out “Stick Together” from Mutts, click on the album cover below:

Mutts CD Cover