Momma: Becoming a Household Name

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Momma: Becoming a Household Name

momma household name
(Image: Sophie Hur)
Words by Benjamin Lamb

Chatting with American indie rockers Momma around the release of their latest album Household Name

It’s hard to sit apart in the rock scene in this day and age, with the industry jam packed with a bevy of killer bands, you’ll need to be doing something pretty different to get noticed.

That’s what you get with Momma, their ’90s rock vibes and modern indie musicianship amalgamate towards some phenomenal tracks.

After a bunch of widely well-received singles over the last little bit, their album Household Name is dropping today, July 1. We caught up with Momma to dive into it all.

Read up on all the latest interviews, features and columns here.

“Sometimes you have to take a second to really tell yourself that people like what you’re doing”, Allegra (Weingarten, guitar + vocals) says. “Sometimes you see the Instagram comments, and the YouTube comments, and it’s all positive.

“But it doesn’t really connect until you kind of have a moment and you’re like, ‘Oh, there’s a lot of people that like what I’m doing,’ and a lot of bands don’t get that. So, I feel really grateful and very proud of what we’ve done.”

The 12-tracker takes the listener on a pretty memorable journey, getting into a bunch of different old school vibes, the album taking shape song by song.

“There were definitely times during the writing period where we were like: ‘We don’t really have a good album opener,’ or ‘We don’t have a good closer,’ or ‘We don’t really have a good transition into the B-side’.

“Small decisions like that definitely influenced a lot of the songwriting process. We also had a pretty big bank to choose from, because we had written more than we needed. So being able to narrow it down was a luxury for sure. I think we picked from 16, which was nice.”

The record also moves into some emotional areas, a space that hasn’t been a mainstay for their music in the past.

“It felt really good to (get in the feels),” Etta (Friedman, guitar + vocals) says. “I think in the past, we’ve just done it in more cryptic ways – it really feels like we’re making something that people can resonate with.”

“It’s a really vulnerable thing,” Allegra adds. “Even if there’s very subtle changes that are being made to the song, it can feel like the end of the world, because you’re like, ‘Oh my god, I wrote this song in my bedroom a year ago about this boy that I was in love with’.

“But the payoff is super unique, to be able to listen to a song and then hear yourself singing to yourself, you’re so proud with the finished result. It’s a really beautiful feeling.”

Browse through some Insta comments or YouTube threads, and see many remarks about the perfect tone heard in Momma tracks, they’ve recreated the sound of the era ideally.

Working closely with bandmate and producer Aron Kobayashi Ritch, a lot of careful consideration has gone into every audible element of Household Name.

“We had so much time to mess around with things,” Etta notes. “Aron Kobayashi Ritch, who plays bass for us and is our producer, he showed us different sounds, tones and break beats and things like that. I think we didn’t really expect some things to fall into our record, specifically break beats. I never really thought about that in a Momma song. Now I’m obsessed with it.

“We did half of the recording in Brooklyn and half of it in LA. In Brooklyn, we did it at a real studio. Then in LA, we did it at Aron’s home studio, which is practically a real studio as well.

Their sound perfectly encapsulates the sounds of old school grunge and rock, while perfectly mixing in current indie vibes, this could be considered a result of Momma’s rich music listening repertoire.

“We kind of started listening to beabadoobee while we were recording this, obviously she’s been around for a while, and we were referencing her a lot, in terms of her choruses and a lot of the production work.”

For any Aussie fans waiting to catch Momma live, they’ve got two words.

“Hopefully 2023!!”


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In the meantime, Household Name is out now, listen to it here.