OFF THE CHARTS: Jack White: Blunderbuss

Dylan Constant
music editor

   After touring the world with some of the weirdest bands of the 20th Century (The White Stripes, The Raconteurs and Dead Weather), Jack White finally released a solo album, ‘Blunderbuss’ on April 24, where he was able to be even weirder.

   Although the first couple lines of ‘Blunderbuss,’ may be disturbing to the casual listener: “I was in the shower, so I could not tell my nose was bleeding.” White’s unique lyrics have managed to deliver exactly what his fans have already come to  know and love.

   Disturbing images aside, however, White has created an astounding empire of music over the last 15 years.

   White was a founding member of the White Stripes with drummer (also ex-wife/ pretend sister) Meg White; lead singer and guitarist of the four- man Raconteurs; and the drummer of Dead Weather featuring Kills vocalist Alison Mosshart; not to mention the record label/ store he runs called Third Man.

   Although White has been called a renaissance man of  sorts, he’s also purist of who prefers basic rock structures and tunings instead of the new music-tech advances, artificial sounds and remixes of today’s music scene.

   But it is lyrically that White sets himself apart.

   ‘Blunderbuss’ is a fearless and thrilling mess of thoughts about love, loss and life in general, in which White makes no attempts to conform or appeal to anyone but himself.

   “No one can  blow the shows/Or throw the bones/ That break your nose/Like I can,” he sings on “Weep Themselves to Sleep.”

   On “Sixteen Saltines,” he describes high  school locker decorations, newspapers, pink mailboxes and, of course, salty crackers. During “On and On and On,” White also gives listeners a brief  philosophical lesson: “The sun and the moon never change/they just rearrange.”

   However, it is on the album’s stunning closer, “Take me with you when  you go,” where White gives the listener a rare and revealing moment that seems to penetrate his carefully crafted mystique by alluding to his recent divorce.

   ‘Blunderbuss’ is, quite simply, a marvelous rock album that is bursting at the seams with youthful energy and creativity, that will definitely not appeal to the teen-pop or hip-hop listener, or even the mainstream media, but has proved why White may not only be the inheritor of a tradition, but also a remarkable ambassador of a genre that may be making a startling comeback.


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