Unknown Mortal Orchestra: ‘American Guilt’

UMO have burst back onto the scene with a thrashy grunge-rock single, proving the act’s mastermind Ruban Nielson is not afraid to defy all expectations and basically just do what he wants.

‘American Guilt’ starts with full on, fuzzed out guitars in a riff that could easily be from a 90’s stadium rock band. When the retro-inspired drum groove comes in with Nielson’s trademark vocals, it slowly starts to sound like UMO; but not like you’ve heard them before.

The internet is throwing around references for the track, saying it’s reminiscent of Nirvana, Queens Of The Stone Age, Jack White, and Jimi Hendrix. Nielson himself explained to fans that they loved making the track in, “the blazing humidity of Hanoi, Vietnam and a quaking Mexico City” and said cheekily, “it’s not an angry song it’s just evil.”

He also manages to pull off wearing tight vinyl pants on the single’s cover, and you know what? Thank goodness we have UMO in this day and age. They’re a class act, and a breath of fresh air in a cookie-cutter world.

Listen to ‘American Guilt’ below: