The Strokes' Albert Hammond Jr: 'My bandmates were concerned that I'd kill myself'

The guitarist opens up about his drug abuse in a revealing interview

The Strokes' Albert Hammond Jr: 'My bandmates were concerned that I'd kill myself'

Photo: Pieter M Van Hattem/NME

The Strokes' Albert Hammond Jr has spoken about the drug abuse that almost killed him.

In an interview with The Talks, the guitarist opens up about his addictions and reveals the true extent of his drug problem, including why he was hooked on taking hard narcotics intravenously.

Speaking about his experiences on drugs, he said: "I did some crazy things, some things I am not proud of. You know, I reached points where I was insane, hearing voices because I was up for so long, moving stuff around and locking myself in my room for long periods of time. I became in love with that very dark side of it, I became in love with the process of intravenous use, even more so than the drugs, just the process of pushing something in there."

Asked how his bandmates felt about his drug problem, he revealed: "What everyone tells me is that the friendship came before the band. Everyone just told me as a friend, 'I don’t want to see you like this. Forget the band'. Such a big part of me is being in this band, it’s huge, but life isn’t all about what you do. I feel like our culture says, 'You are what you make', but I don’t believe that. So I think everyone was just more concerned that I was going to kill myself.

"I wasn’t going to kill myself on purpose, but you reach a point where you really just don’t see it and you just don’t care," he added.

"It could have happened so easily so many times. I don’t even know how I kept on waking up. First you are at least measuring it. But by the end you are so shaky you are just mixing and pouring and sometimes you feel it. You push it in and you know it is too much and then your body goes into some kind of shake and you get extreme fear, like, 'That’s it, I have done it, I have done too much. I am going to fall down'."

Albert Hammond Jr released a new EP, titled 'AHJ', last week on his bandmate Julian Casablancas' Cult Records label. The follow-up to his 2006 debut LP 'Yours To Keep' and 2008 record '¿Cómo Te Llama?', Hammond Jr said of the material: "It’s a combination of both previous recordings, which in turn makes it feel like it’s the best material that I’ve made so far."

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