By The Dead Weather
The birth of The Dead Weather came about during the last Raconteurs tour in 2008. Struggling with his voice, Jack White invited The Kills lead sing Alison Mosshart onto the stage to deputise for the final few shows; her band had been the support act. It was an easy choice since she could quite easily pass as a female White on both vocals and appearance.
Once the tour was over they decided to go to White's studio, taking fellow Raconteur, bassist Jack Lawrence and current Queens Of The Stone Age keyboardist and guitarist Dean Fertita along with them. Originally they were going to cut a single, but it felt so good it led to a full album.
For his latest band, White is directing the action from behind the drum kit and chipping in with the odd vocal. So while the album misses out on White's brutal guitar work, the dirty blues riffs and tension of his previous bands is very much alive. The opening track '60 Feet High' is clearly inspired by White, with its screeching feedback backed by a haunting blues riff.
The album doesn't just rely on these trademark sounds. '3 Birds' shows the diversity of the album: a melodic instrumental that has a great groove mixed with some wonderful effects. 'Rocking Horse' has a nice retro sound with the surf guitar style chord strokes echoing around the verse. Then there's 'Treat Me Like Your Mother' with its powerful effects soaked riff booming through the speakers.
On top of these songs, the album is surrounded by a lot of solid numbers like 'New Pony' and 'So Far From Your Weapon.' But with 'Cut Like A Buffalo,' a strange dub style song, it went from being totally irresistible on the first listen to rather annoying after a few more. This is the only really weak track.
The production on the album is first rate and the band work well as a unit. It's just that there are a lot of good, solid rock songs and only a couple that you can really get excited about. But if past history is anything to go by, White's bands normally develop into something special while on the road. So, with a UK tour pencilled in for the Autumn, it could prove to be quite a special evening.