Albert Hammond Jr, Momentary Masters - album review

Download: Power Hungry; Razors Edge

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The Independent Culture

Like many a sidekick guitarist taking centre-stage, The Strokes’ Albert Hammond Jr struggles to impose a persuasive sense of character on this third solo effort.

It’s not a matter of failing to establish a specific musical direction – the spiky guitars and stiff, jerky rhythms signal a dedication to his old band’s sound that is commendably faithful, if ultimately tiresome.

The brittle, blue-eyed, New York funk of “Power Hungry” is the most agreeable example, its ticking hi-hats and muscular bass strut flecked with damped guitar picking. But elsewhere, the stilted bustle of beats bereft of swing swiftly tires – something most evident in a mechanistic cover of “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right” lacking the push and pull required.

The skinny-tie new-wave of “Razors Edge”, with its escalating guitar break, is handled better, but the stern punk motorik of closer “Side Boob” is like power-walking: no fun at all.