Sunday, November 22, 2009

Review: Julian Casablancas - Phrazes for the Young (* * *)

Whatever it was that caused The Strokes to go on indefinite hiatus in 2006, it looks to have not effected the individual members' capacity to create new music. Frontman Julian Casablancas is the fourth artist of The Strokes' quintet to release a post-Strokes record, joining guitarist Albert Hammond Jr., who's released two full-lengths during the band’s three-year-and-counting break. And while Hammond found success in retaining some of his band’s signature rock ‘n’ roll tendencies (albeit often with less bombast and more variety), drummer Fabrizio Moretti and bassist Nikolai Fraiture went in decidedly different directions. The former combined forces with Los Hermanos’ Rodrigo Amarante to create a charming, relaxed pop album under the name Little Joy, while Fraiture’s Nickel Eye side-project (decidedly the least interesting of the these off-shoots) is more folk-rock in nature. Each release has arrived with an inherent measure of hype, given its association with one of the decade’s most explosive young rock bands, but none has suffered the weight of expectation quite like Phrazes for the Young. (Continue Reading at In Review Online)