Albert Hammond Jr. - AHJ - The Strokes - 2013 Indie Rock Ltd to 1000 Copies 4 Trk 10" EP
Albert Hammond Jr. - AHJ
Label: Cult Records
Format: Vinyl, EP, 10", Limited Edition
has pic inner sleeve
Style: Indie Rock
A1 St. Justice
A2 Strange Tidings
A3 Carnal Cruise
B1 Rude Customer
B2 Cooker Ship
Albert Hammond Jr. is not the most popular Stroke, nor the most rock-star-stylish, nor the one who attracts an inordinate amount of popular comedic actresses, nor even the quiet one.
But he is nonetheless the Strokesiest of the Strokesif you were to ever dress up as a Stroke for Halloween, youd be copping Hammonds one-size-too-small thrift-store sports jacket, skinny tie, Chuck Taylors, and hair photoshopped off of Billy Ficca's head on the first Television album cover.
Accordingly, out of all the extracurricular projects the Strokes have pursued over the years, Hammonds solo releases have hewed most closely to the bands bleary-eyed, tousled charm and classicist tendencies.
Hammond may not be as casually charismatic as Julian Casablancas, and his songs can be modest and unassuming to a faultthe gently loping "St. Justice" is not so much an opening salvo as a warm-up exercise to check the levels of each instrument. But he brings a convincing poignancy and urgency when required. Strange Tidings recalls the dream-pop drive of Hard to Explain, yet lines like If Im guilty/ Itll show and control is so hard to find provide sobering reminders of a time when Hammond had to wear long sleeves even on the hottest summer days.
But while oblique references to Hammonds darkest hours abound on AHJ (Cooker Ship conjures images of burnt spoons and bottoming-out in the sort of fantastical terms his hero-turned-buddy Bob Pollard would appreciate), the energy here is one of spirited, defiant revitalization. And in the amazingly compact Rude Customer, Hammond turns in a song that wouldve been the hands-down highlight on any of the past three Strokes albums. If you're precisely the sort of disenchanted old-school Strokes fan who would respond to that with, "Well, that's not saying much," then the lean econo-pop of AHJ will feel all the more like a gift.
|Format||EP , 10", EP, 10"|