Albert Hammond Jr. Returns: The Alt/Indie Tracks You Need Right Now
If you’re an Alternative/Indie junkie like me, then you know how daunting the task is when you have to dig up new tracks or bands. Generally, when I search for something new, I go through playlists and albums on Spotify, and I am mostly disappointed by the lack of options; or the overwhelming presence of boy band acts camouflaged as rock groups. I had tuned into KROQ’s Local’s Only, and Albert Hammond Jr.’s new single played on air; I was immediately hooked.
Albert Hammond Jr. is an LA native, most famously known as both the rhythm and lead guitarist of the seminole indie band, The Strokes. Fans of The Strokes out there who crave those distorted riffs and rock out to the garage rock genre, should definitely keep up with Hammond Jr. Onto his fourth solo album, now with Red Bull Studios, Hammond Jr.’s Francis Trouble is scheduled to release March 9th of this year.
Until then, two singles from his LP are available for you to check out, “Muted Beatings” and “Far Away Truths.” Of the two, the first released was “Muted Beatings,” and the moment you press play, you’re captured by the high tempo pop-punk sound; you melt over the dark, yet charming lyrics. Be sure to catch the visual component to the song too, it’s quite wistful and picturesque:
“Muted Beatings” Official Video – Directed by Fraser RIGG
Although, when I was first exposed to “Muted Beatings,” I kept it on repeat for days until the second single, “Far Away Truths,” was released. This track contains those rough edges that we all love about Hammond Jr.’s; the riffs that were first introduced to us from the earlier work he’s famously done with The Strokes. The two singles back to back are definitely what we need before the entire album drops. If you aren’t too familiar with his prior solo work, it’s definitely worthy of your attention. Here a list of my personal favorites from each of his solo albums in order as they appear on each album:
Yours to Keep (2006)
- “Cartoon Music for Superheroes”
- “In Transit”
Como Te Llama? (2008)
- “Spooky Couch”
- “Borrowed Time”
Shj – EP (2013)
- “Strange Tidings”
- “Cooker Ship”
Momentary Masters (2015)
- “Born Slippy”
- “Power Hungry”
- “Drunched in Crumbs”
- “Side Boob”
Despite the most recognizable aspects of Hammond Jr.’s work, being the embodiment of the garage rock genre, a few of my favorite tracks from his solo work are completely detached from that. “Cartoon Music for Superheroes” is the first track off of his debut solo album, Yours to Keep, and it sets the tone for the entire album; from introducing himself with a different tone from the early albums he delivered with The Strokes. The track, “Spooky Couch,” from the second album, Como Te Llama?, is a great instrumental piece that surprised me at first, but is one of my favorites because it is a cohesive and sedative track.
If you find yourself well intrigued by Albert Hammond Jr. and want to check him out live, he is currently on tour until April 12th.