In a particularly prolific year for Ty Segall (which really is saying a lot), Fudge Sandwich may be, in the light of his understated release of Orange Rainbow just the week prior, his sixth release of 2018. And yet, he doesn’t sound remotely exhausted – if anything he’s spurred more into rewarding his fans with even more material, this time with a subtly intimate slant. Here’s another solid collection of tracks, with Segall recording “a covers album of songs he loves” for our enjoyment.

For the most part, the songs on Fudge Sandwich are fashioned largely through Segall applying his typically garage-rock aesthetic to classic rock tracks. His covers of John Lennon’s ‘Isolation’ and Neil Young’s ‘The Loner’, for example, trade in the original gentle piano rock and serene Americana for power chords and wails; while his versions of ‘I’m A Man’ (The Spencer Davis Group) and ‘Hit It and Quit It’ (Funkadelic) are just brasher, harsher, more distorted takes on otherwise simple covers. The influence of these tracks on Segall’s sound is clear, and merely noting his choices is interesting as an illustration of how he was moulded into the musician he is today. Considering Segall’s West Coast origins and how his style incorporates elements of both the psychedelia of Amon Düül II and the straightforward punk of Rudimentary Peni; hearing him actually cover these artists is quite gratifying in that they seem to document the family tree of his own style of music.

Apart from the obviously garage-drenched tracks, there are also a handful of more outlandish numbers on Fudge Sandwich that either thoroughly impress or leave a bit to be desired. Of the worst, Segall’s acoustic version of The Dils’ ‘Class War’ loses most of the original’s purpose and impact, surreally and confusingly opting to take a passive route through what is by no means a passive song. Of the best, the opening cover of War’s ‘Lowrider’ is the most brilliant take here; substituting punchy horns for a more dystopic and minimalist blend of menacingly delivered lyrics and bleeding horrorcore synths; though ‘Pretty Miss Titty’ (Gong) is another memorable cut, impactfully and tastefully arranged and closer ‘Slowboat’ (Sparks) is a crooner played in a style that doesn’t sound too far off Mac Demarco.

A covers album rarely prompts a second look from either fans or critics, and yet Fudge Sandwich strangely ushers multiple listens. Perhaps its that it includes such a wide array of tracks, spanning both pop standards and underground gems; or that they’re so dotingly reproduced by a man that obviously adores them. However, it’s the autobiographical nature of the record as a whole that really sticks with the listener. If you’re a Segall fan then these open you up to his influences, while also offering more of an insight into an artist who continues to both be reclusive and impressively prolific.