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September 2022

Momma: "We're big music nerds"

Brooklyn-via-Los Angeles duo Momma lift the lid on their rock star-inspired new album.
Published: 11:09 am, July 01, 2022
Momma: "We're big music nerds"

Brooklyn-via-Los Angeles duo Momma have had an exciting time of late, with a set of dates supporting band-of-the-moment Wet Leg, and their first-ever trip to the UK. Dual vocalists/guitarists Etta Friedman and Allegra Weingarten take a break from watching true crime on TV in their London hotel to spill the beans on their upcoming new album, 'Household Name' - a record inspired by 'the rise and fall of the rock star'.

Hey guys, you're currently in the UK for a few live shows - is there anything you're particularly keen to experience while you're over?

This is our first time in the UK. We're super excited to explore London and do all of the touristy stuff tomorrow, like The National Gallery and Buckingham Palace.

You've just played some dates with Wet Leg, right? Any fun stories from the road?

The Wet Leg dates were fun! We got super drunk with a bunch of old Portland indie-heads. We overheard them talking about Guided By Voices, so we ended up hanging out with them for a while.

When did you make the move from LA to Brooklyn? What prompted you to relocate?

Etta came to Brooklyn for college in 2017. Allegra went to school in New Orleans for four years and then came to Brooklyn after graduating. It just seems like the best city to be in to do music.

How are you settling in to New York, do you already have lots of musician friends there?

We're very settled! We've got a good amount of musician friends, but also normal friends.

Where do you like to hang out?

You can basically find us in any Bushwick bar with a pool table.

When did you start work on your new album, 'Household Name'?

We started working on 'Household Name' in August 2020 right after Allegra moved to New York. We were just super, super eager to write and demo as much as possible. It was still pretty locked down in New York, so we didn't really have much to do besides write music.

Did you have any specific goals for what you wanted to achieve with the release, going into it?
We wanted to make a really big sounding record that was also super polished. We just wanted every song to be thoughtful. There are no filler tracks. Every second of every song was on purpose.

How did having a theme - the rise and fall of the rock star - impact the release? Did you research lots of famous rock stars for inspiration?

We didn't really have to do much research; we're big music nerds, so we had pretty good insight going into it. Even though this theme was overarching, it's definitely not a concept record in the sense that there are plenty of songs that don't really fit that theme. I guess the whole rock and roll theme wasn't just lyrically-based, but sonically-based too.

Who's your favourite rock star?

Kurt Cobain.

What's the dynamic like between the two of you when it comes to creating your music?

We have a really harmonious relationship when it comes to writing lyrics or guitar parts together. Sometimes it starts with us jamming in the same room, or one of us will bring a chord progression to the other person to flesh out the rest of a song. Lyrics are typically always written together.

Do you already know what you want to do next musically, or will that take a bit of time?

I think it's gonna take a bit of time. We haven't even started demoing for the next album yet, but we definitely have seeds of some songs!

Taken from the July issue of Upset. Momma's new album 'Household Name' is out 1st July.

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