During my early adolescence, The White Stripes were one of my favourite bands; and whilst most people know them for their big hits like “Seven Nation Army” and “The Hardest Button to Button”, my favourites were “Hotel Yorba” and “Blue Orchid”.
Sadly, Jack and Meg have disbanded since then. However, to my joy, Jack White has continued to pursue his solo music career leading us to the Album of the Week: Blunderbuss – Jack White
Released in 2012, Blunderbuss has a distinct blues/indie/folk rock sound. It’s this style that I find sets it apart from many other modern rock albums, especially with its genre diversity. There are some amazing pieces to be found in this 13 track record, however, I did find a few to be quite lacking.
So here are my views on a select number of songs from this worthy album:
(And don’t forget, if you have any other album recommendations for reviewing, post them in a comment at the end!)
- The solid and catchy beat of this song is so intense I cannot listen without tapping my foot in time.
- Whilst the song has a distinct bluesy rock feel to it, there is enough grunge in its tone to not feel dated.
Freedom at 21
- One of the darker and more brooding songs off the record, Freedom at 21 is my favourite from Blunderbuss.
- The use of vocal panning is utilised quite well, making the music feel very dynamic and interesting, without feeling gimmicky.
- Like in the work of the White Stripes, the drums and guitar are the driving sound of this track, the repetitive beat not becoming overly monotonous due to interspersed solos.
Take Me with You When You Go
- Blunderbuss has a lot of gems, however, “Take Me with You When You Go” definitely has a lot of rough you have to get through before diamond.
- Being the last song on the album, the first two and a half minutes of this four minute song felt decidedly underwhelming.
- The lyrics at the start don’t really add much, but about half way through, the song picks up key dramatically. No longer a slow, droning song, there’s some beautiful electric guitar solos going on and intense drum play.
- If it wasn’t for the too slow build up, this would be a contender for one of my top picks of the album, however, it’s a scenario of too little too late.
- Love Interruption is a great example of how White has the ability to make up-beat rock songs, but also break down his renowned style for slower, quieter, and beautiful songs.
- With backing vocals by Ruby Amanfu and also featuring bass clarinets, Love Interruption seems to take a snap shot at the side of love which is sometimes over looked; the negative side of love which can be destructive or intruding to one’s personal self.
- The song adds to the diversity to the album in terms of sound. The lack of drum and swapping to acoustic guitar creates a distinction between this and other songs on the album, even other slower ones such Hip (Eponymous) Poor Boy, and On and On and On.
Overall, a solid album with a number memorable songs. Even though a few missed the mark for me, there’s enough diversity here that most people will be able to find at least one or two songs they find enjoyable.
Feel free to comment your thoughts on this record below and while you’re there, recommend some other albums you would like to see reviewed too!