Introducing Momma, the New-York based band skillfully carving their own path as they gear up to release their electric third album ‘Household Name’ - the band’s most personal project to date.
Words by Oli Spencer
Photography by Cooper Winterson & Sophia Hur
Fronting the band is Etta Friedman and Allegra Weingarten, who met in high-school and began writing songs together, eventually forming Momma. The band found praise with their 2020 album ‘Two Of Me’, although well received, it was during a time where connection was lost. This time around however, the band are closer than ever - relocating to the big apple, and finally being able to spend the entire demo and recording phases of the album’s creation together for the first time. That connection unlocked a new level of artistry within the band, “I think this album couldn’t help but to get personal.” Etta says.
The album is a capsule of 90’s influence and inward storytelling, their vulnerability amplified through rocking guitar riffs and daring production across all twelve tracks. Allegra shares she went through a lot of changes during the album’s writing process, the main change being in the whirlwind of a really messy breakup. She felt like she had something to prove, turning heartbreak into motivation.
“I wanted to write about heartbreak, which isn’t something we normally focus on in our lyrics. Etta and I ended up writing several songs on our own because we were having two really different experiences during this time.” she says. The song ‘Lucky’ details Etta’s time spent across the country from their partner, missing them and realising how they can make the mundane feel that much more special. On the other hand, ‘Motorbike’ is a song about Allegra’s made up scenarios while she was hung up on a guy who didn't give her the time of day.
‘Household Name’ marks the beginning of an exhilarating new chapter, shining a spotlight on the dynamic quartet. This is Momma at their finest!
GET TO KNOW: MOMMA
Where did you all meet?
Etta and I met in high school in Calabasas. It was a super preppy/jock-y school, so we bonded over our similar taste in music. I honestly don’t really remember how we met Aron. He recorded our first EP with our friend Sebastian, who I’ve known since we were young. That was the first time we met I think.
What was the first album you each bought?
I bought three in one day. Kate Bush greatest hits, Tom Petty ‘Damn the Torpedoes’, and a Tommy James and the Shondells record.
My first record was No Doubt’s ‘Rock Steady’
One song you wish you wrote?
‘Hear Me Out’ by Frou Frou. Amazing lyrics and a super powerful chorus. I’ve cried listening to that song so many times.
I wish I wrote ‘Off You’ by The Breeders. Beautiful, simple, dynamic, and really thought provoking metaphors.
An instrument you wish you could play?
PIANO! Or violin. Maybe violin first so I could add some pretty stuff to country songs. I also want to learn lap steel. There’s a lot. Guitar is a boring instrument.
I would love to be able to play the saxophone honestly.
What’s your favourite song to perform live?
For me it’s ‘Motorbike’. It’s unreleased but it’s a fun little riff and then I have my moment where everything drops out and it’s just my vocals and guitar. That always feels good. In terms of what’s on Spotify, I’d say ‘Derby’ is my new favorite. We just started playing it recently and it’s quick and fun to head bang to.
I think I’d have to agree with Allegra. ‘Motorbike’ is a very fun song to play, and it’s the first time I don’t really have to worry about playing a part properly and singing at the same time. It’s really enjoyable to just dance and watch the audience have a blast.
What’s the best part of New York?
All the people I love are here. Everything else about New York is difficult. I guess there’s never a shortage of things to do. Every band is going to stop in New York on tour.
There’s countless things to do, but more than that I really established a family and community over here that I love so much. People are very supportive in New York.
Do you have a song that reminds you of the city?
‘Anthems’ by Charli XCX.
Cheesy, but, ‘Only Living Boy in New York’ by Simon and Garfunkel. Or, ‘WAP’ by Cardi B.
Favourite lyric from ‘Rockstar?’
“His favorite song is Hummer, soundtrack in the mini van.”
If your upcoming album was a texture… what texture would it be?