Ramonda Hammer begin their latest album Whatever That Means with a stellar introduction to the band. The alternative rock presented here refreshes the sound of acts like Bif Naked and The Anniversary. Sizzling guitar works perfectly with supersonic vocals to ensure that listeners are on the edges of their seats as they move into If, Then. The slower and more contemplative tack taken by Ramonda Hammer here allows listeners to see the raw technical skill of the band. The mid-tempo Goddamn Idiot feels fresh out of the halcyon days of the early nineties; bits of “Cherub Rock”-era Smashing Pumpkins and L7 can be pulled out.
Strangers Love You is a highlight for us as the fuzzy chaos that Ramonda Hammer begins the track is molded into a shuffling, shambling trqack that has a emphatic bass line, splashy drums, and a masterful narrative that bubbles up. Bits of Nada Surf and Weezer can be heard here, but the additional layer of passionate, emotive fury that is placed ever so carefully pushes this song into the stratosphere.
Amends Were Made has a deeper, darker track than much of the fare that is present on Whatever That Means. While glimpses of the power-pop are here, the brooding craze of the vocals sets this song off from the rest of the album’s late-disc track. Whatever That Means concludes with Out of Style, a cut that slows things down and has Ramonda Hammer take fans through the different twists and turns of the previous minutes. Winding things down nicely, the band is able to provide a strong conclusion to an album that never fails to innovate. Ramonda Hammer are able to foster a unique sound that will be appreciated by anyone that is a fan of rock or alternative styles.
Top Tracks: Strangers Love You, Amends Were Made