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Momma: A Fashionable Band With a Nostalgic Sound

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There’s a revealing lyric in Momma‘s standout new track “Dashing 72” that claims loads concerning the members of the New York-by-way-of-Los Angeles quartet: “Meet up on a Sunday, filling up the ashtray / Nothing will get in our method, all the time in a brand new place / You'll be able to catch us round, listening to ‘Gold Soundz’.”

That reference to a street journey soundtracked by a 1994 Pavement track would appear fairly on-brand from a bunch of wizened previous indie heads, particularly with the beloved Stephen Malkmus-led outfit about to tour this yr for the primary time since 2012. However for a gaggle of musicians like Momma’s Allegra Weingarten and Etta Friedman, who had been in diapers when Pavement initially broke up in 1999, it has a a lot deeper which means.

 

“Allegra and I listened to a lot Pavement as youngsters,” Friedman tells SPIN over Zoom. “I really feel prefer it was considered one of our largest inspirations when it comes to lyrics and visuals.” Certainly, Friedman, Weingarten and producer/bassist Aron Kobayashi Ritch spent large bucks shopping for tickets for Pavement reunion exhibits this fall, however Momma’s personal fall headlining tour schedule (in iconic golf equipment akin to New York’s Music Corridor of Williamsburg and The Echo in Los Angeles ) proved incompatible with the itinerary.

And whereas it is going to be disappointing to not hear “Gold Soundz” reside and within the flesh, it’s certainly drawback to have for Momma, which is on the ascent because of a current stint opening for fellow buzz band Moist Leg and the robust response to current singles “Drugs” and “Rockstar” from its upcoming album, Family Identify. Produced by Kobayashi Ritch, the mission arrives July 1 on Polyvinyl/Fortunate Quantity Music and conjures a beguiling, refreshing sound considerably akin to Hayley Williams fronting Pinback with distortion pedals.

Weingarten and Friedman met and bonded over music in highschool within the mid-2010s in Calabasas, Calif., instructing themselves how one can play devices whereas obsessively listening to their favourite bands. Their enthusiasm for sharing new musical discoveries shines by means of even over Zoom, as they spontaneously rattle off current obsessions with beabadoobee, The Dandy Warhols, The Damned and Bombay Bicycle Membership. “I believe we’d solely had one sleepover earlier than we picked up our guitars and began writing songs,” Weingarten says with amusing. “Then we did that for the following two years.”

“Our earliest songs would begin with Allegra’s verse, or her expertise with the subject. The second half can be my verse and my viewpoint, after which we’d come collectively on a refrain,” Friedman observes. “Now, we’re so in contact and in tune with one another that, as a lot as we do nonetheless have very completely different experiences in life, we’re extra symbiotic with each other, the place every little thing can play out and have its area. It’s not as separate inside one track.”

The duo launched two prior albums in small indie labels in 2018 and 2020, however Family Identify is a huge leap ahead filled with delightfully heavy dropped-D riffs, irresistible melodies, winks and nods to life in a band (ie., drummers who insist on listening to nothing however “Hummer” by Smashing Pumpkins within the van) and Weingarten and Friedman’s seamless vocal harmonies.

It’s typically laborious to differentiate between who's singing what and even whether or not the spiky riffs are being performed on guitar or bass, a stylistic curiosity impressed by the instrumental interaction of Pinback’s Rob Crow and Zach Smith. “The best way Etta and I like to jot down guitar components is so you may’t inform when one individual is switching from chords to guide,” Weingarten says. “We listened to quite a lot of Pinback once we had been making this document,” Kobayashi Ritch gives. “We even caught foam below the guitars to emulate the sounds of these information.”

Certainly, Kobayashi Ritch’s artistic manufacturing touches evince the forethought that went into writing and arranging the fabric with the completed product prime of thoughts, just like the mix of actual drums and breakbeat samples on “Courageous” and the acoustic verse/fuzzed-out refrain construction of “Rockstar” (“The traditional ‘90s transfer,” Kobayashi Ritch admits). “That is genuinely how we’ve all the time wished to sound and current ourselves,” Friedman enthuses. “I can’t wait to see what occurs as soon as everybody can hear it.”



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