Turbo Fruits may roll off the tongue better than "the Jonas Stein Experience," but the latter is starting to look like a more accurate handle for this band -- Butter is the third album from the Turbo Fruits, and just as 2009's Echo Kid featured a different lineup than their self-titled debut, Butter finds the band expanded from a trio into a quartet, with guitarist and vocalist Stein the only guy to appear on all three records. As Stein fiddles with the band's membership on each album, he also adjusts their sound and approach, and on Butter, he's clearly aiming for a bigger and bolder rock & roll attack, a little less frantic than he was in his days with Be Your Own Pet and featuring a mustachioed ‘70s swagger to go with the beers and ‘cycles they brandish on the back cover. Stein and guitarist Kingsley Brock have no fear of dueling guitar leads or fuzzy soloing, while bassist Dave Tits (no, really, that's what he calls himself) and drummer Matt Hearn keep their attack lean but cut a deep, unshakable groove. The Turbo Fruits show a genuine commitment to the rock on Butter, but if the album has a flaw, it's that Stein and his buddies seem hesitant to hit this material quite as hard as it needs to be. This music clearly owes a debt of influence to ‘70s hard rock, but on most of these songs, Stein and Brock still seem to be working out their garage and pop influences in their guitar work; they don't deliver a fully satisfying fusion of their influences, but instead split the difference between jangle and crunch, watering it all down in the process. "Ain't the Only One Havin' Fun" and "Don't Like to Fight" show the Turbo Fruits are well on their way to hitting the right formula, but too much of Butter seems a lot more like margarine.
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AllMusic Review by Mark Deming