Albert Hammond Jr. : Francis Trouble
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Albert Hammond Jr. : Francis Trouble

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The Stroke’s singer, songwriter and guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. has put out his fourth solo record, Francis Trouble, the release offering a deeply personal exploration into the stillborn death of his twin brother, Francis.

‘DVSL’ kicks things off in superb indie-pop fashion. Humming along to AHJ’s signature rhythm guitar, there’s clear inspiration from the likes of Bowie, first single from the album, ‘Far Away Truths’, starts with the same chords as all good The Strokes’ songs, and is strengthened by AHJ’s ever-evolving vocal talent. It’s followed by ‘Muted Beatings’, which unfortunately falls a little flat considering the early ante.

The Strokes’ influence remains strong on ‘Set To Attack’ with the distorted vocals in full swing and AHJ showcasing his best guitar work on the album. ‘Screamer’ is a good old-fashion rock-out, and apart from the dawdling intro, ‘Rocky’s Late Night’ has one of the most head-bopping beats behind it. The album closes with the uninspired ‘Strangers’, followed by ‘Harder, Harder, Harder’, which is a strong finish.

 8/10