14 Songs, 48 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The White Stripes rock. It’s that simple. Jack White, well schooled in the basics of blues, country, punk and metal, churns it out  — with drummer Meg pounding out her “Icky Thump” of a beat — like the seasoned pro his garage rock soul has slowly but surely become. This is not another dirty, creepy lo-fi album from the basement (though the album’s closer “Effect and Cause” is a reminder), but a full-fledged attack from Nashville’s Blackbird Studios. “Icky Thump,” the song, is an unusual single, moody and creepy, but Icky Thump, the album, is a smorgasbord of sound, a whiplash tour through the genre junkshop that is White’s musical consciousness. “You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told),” crashes through like a long-lost AC/DC track. The Patti Page number, “Conquest,” and “300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues” survey the blues. “Rag and Bone” turns John Lee Hooker’s “Boogie Chillen” on its head. “Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn” twists Scottish folk (and its bagpipes) with psychedelia. “Little Cream Soda” leaves space for White the sideshow barker to babble his entertaining nonsense before the crushing guitars resume their forward march. Jack White’s not exactly King Midas but everything he touches turns to classic rock.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The White Stripes rock. It’s that simple. Jack White, well schooled in the basics of blues, country, punk and metal, churns it out  — with drummer Meg pounding out her “Icky Thump” of a beat — like the seasoned pro his garage rock soul has slowly but surely become. This is not another dirty, creepy lo-fi album from the basement (though the album’s closer “Effect and Cause” is a reminder), but a full-fledged attack from Nashville’s Blackbird Studios. “Icky Thump,” the song, is an unusual single, moody and creepy, but Icky Thump, the album, is a smorgasbord of sound, a whiplash tour through the genre junkshop that is White’s musical consciousness. “You Don’t Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You’re Told),” crashes through like a long-lost AC/DC track. The Patti Page number, “Conquest,” and “300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues” survey the blues. “Rag and Bone” turns John Lee Hooker’s “Boogie Chillen” on its head. “Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn” twists Scottish folk (and its bagpipes) with psychedelia. “Little Cream Soda” leaves space for White the sideshow barker to babble his entertaining nonsense before the crushing guitars resume their forward march. Jack White’s not exactly King Midas but everything he touches turns to classic rock.

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