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Strokes guitarist has new taste for music in small bursts

@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

Posted: Sunday, November 10, 2013

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Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. had modest plans for his next solo release. In fact, the five-song "AHJ" he put out last month on Strokes frontman Julian Casablancas' Cult Records label was even a bit more than he expect.

"I wanted to release something with Julian for awhile," explains Hammond, 33, who's released two previous albums. "In my mind and his mind it was going to be a single or something like that, but as I sent him the songs and kept working on other ones it just kept growing.

"It wasn't like, 'I'm gonna make a five-song EP for you,' but we just kind of kept on going and finally it was like, 'Look, we have five (songs). Let's just put them out.' "

Hammond says he's grown fond of releasing music in smaller quantities, noting that "I feel kind of tired of the album format, to be honest" and feels like he'll "grow quicker" by putting out multiple EPs each year. He also expects to be making new music with the Strokes, although Hammond says that a recent e.mail newsletter to the group's fans that announced a 2014 "return to the scene" after this year's "Comedown Machine" was a bit premature.

"There's no news or information," Hammond days. "We're not writing or doing anything. Maybe individually we are, but it's not like we're in the studio writing or anything.

"I think people always want things immediate, and I feel like what's best is always something that's thought-out. Something that's great will just have more of an impact than something that's now."

Albert Hammond Jr. and Rathborne perform Monday, Nov. 11, at the Magic Bag, 22920 Woodward Ave., Ferndale. Doors open at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20. Call 248-544-3030 or visit www.themagicbag.com.

Web Site: www.themagicbag.com

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