I liked the debut Strokes album quite a bit. I hated the second and was kind of apathetic to the third. But the band has always been decent about respecting their influences, paying tribute and even collaborating with these elder statesmen. You don’t need to look any further than the comical “Someday” video with Guided By Voices, and although this influence isn’t all that evident on the Strokes albums on Albert Hammond’s debut solo record you hear Bob Pollard and company soaked lovingly throughout each of the albums 12 songs including a cover of the GBV classic “Postal Blowout.”
“Yours to Keep” is much more than just a derivative rock record, it is more a pop effort complete with cameos from Sean Lennon and Ben Kweller, in addition to quiet acoustic ballads that remove it from the shadows of the mighty Strokes. There is nothing that I would describe as particularly new here, but what there is is very good. Hammond and his main band of merry tricksters will likely be back soon, but as a solo effort this one is a pleasant surprise.