The Beatles had their mop tops and chelsea boots in the early years, Stevie Nicks has her gypsy dresses, Johnny Cash is the man in black and now we have Albert Hammond, Jr. the man in red. It’s known that Picasso had his pink period and his blue period, a similar statement can be said about Albert. Strutting in that infamous red jumpsuit which he also performed in at Shaky Knees and wore it during his video for Losing Touch. During his AHJ EP, Albert had his red era and for his newest album, Momentary Masters, he’s in his white and black era.
It’s completely foreshadowing for his album, the aesthetic is dark and light which shows the duality of the songs.. It’s clean with unadulterated tunes yet with the contrast of dark, it’s somber and melancholic. It’s a theme Albert knows well.
Albert is an underrated as a writer and artist and it’s no surprise that he wants to distance himself and set accomplishments in his own accord. Momentary Masters is a composition of exploration. Complete with layers of climactic vocals, interplay of guitar riffs, rhythmic tones, flexuous bass lines, and melodic textures. Don’t mistake this for a side project, this is Albert Hammond, Jr. gone solo and he’s giving it his all.
Momentary Masters is a tour de force collaborating with friend and producer, Gus Oberg. The magic of this album developed in Albert’s home studio in upstate New York teaming back up with his AHJ EP’s band in tow, Hammarsing Kharmar and Mikey Hart on guitars, Jordan Brooks on bass, and Jeremy Gustin on drums. The intimacy of the recording process seems to have influenced Albert and his creative writing and agility as an artists. Detaching and immersing themselves from the layers of noise of the city to instead develop layers and tapestries of sounds on the Momentary Masters.
The album starts off with Born Slippy and automatically sucks you in with that intro.. “Yeah you got a free consultation from fucking miss Cleo bitch. Go wipe your ass now” and immediately goes into that intoxicating and infectious beat, but with any album there are twinges of melancholia and woefulness and on Momentary Masters and it’s no surprise that Albert would compose about some darker days. This is where the dark contrast comes in, for instance on Coming To Getcha he writes “Just because we’re part of the scene, doesn’t mean we share the same dream,” it’s a feeling of deracination and remorse for his actions. In Power Hungry he channels a somber position with lyrics like “I thought I belonged to something, walking upstairs gets me down.” Caught by My Shadow, Drenched in Crumbs, and Razors Edge are the perfect contrast songs to the dark tone.
Don’t Think Twice is a personalized interpretation of Bob Dylan’s Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right which coincides with Dylan’s very well.
Side Boob, Touché, and Losing Touch are the light side of the duality tone. The songs are vigorous, robust, and catchy as hell. (I still have Losing Touch stuck in my head.) Momentary Masters is one of those albums that are perfect for driving too, it’s addicting and captivating yet it’s pensive and deep. You can dance along to when you’re alone like no one’s watching, or it can get you feeling nostalgic and melancholic.
It fits all moods that we go through, it’s an album that has been anticipated and doesn’t disappoint.