Didn’t the White Stripes seem damn-near indestructible? First, they survived Detroit. (No easy task that!) Then they survived what Tennessee Williams called “the catastrophe of success.” And finally, they survived divorce… ur, I mean: childhood together. If any band was genetically engineered to have a lengthy career, it should’ve been them. And thus, when they announced their retirement, it felt as strange as when Shakespeare announced his.
Shakespeare: With this mulberry tree, I announceth my retirement and returnth home
Michael Drayton: [aside to Ben Jonson] Should we tell him that this is a terrible idea?
Ben Jonson: [aside to Michael Drayton] Nay, he never listens; he’s just like the characters in his plays. Remember when we pointed out his mistake in Julius Caesar? Much goode that did!
Michael Drayton: [aside to Ben Jonson] Forsooth, then let us be merry and show up on the day before his birth-day to get him goode and drunk!
With the abrupt disappearance of the White Stripes, musiclovers rushed into the open arms of bands like the Raveonettes, the Kills, and the Black Keys. But these bands couldn’t fill the void. The Raveonettes are too pop, the Kills are godawful boring, and the Black Keys are [opinion redacted].
Being from Ohio, I’m contractually obligated NOT to criticize the Black Keys.
But this contractual obligation doesn’t mean that I can’t criticize Danger Mouse, right? I’m convinced that Danger Mouse goes by that silly name because his real name is Bruce Dickinson and his Svengali-like control over the Black Keys includes shouting things like, “you babies are all going to be wearing GOLD PLATED DIAPERS” and “Dan, I’VE GOT A FEVER… and the only cure… is MORE COWBELL!!!”
When has the marriage of R & B production and guitar-driven rock ever yielded a successful formula? Hell, even Mos Def couldn’t pull it off and that’s saying something; if Mos Def can’t make white people embrace something, then there’s no hope for it!
Here’s my ‘Big Three’ of songs that sound like the White Stripes that are NOT by the Raveonettes, the Kills, or the Black Keys:
Lebron: You Rascal You by Hanni El Khatib- Proving that Detroit-style garage rock is alive and well in San Francisco. Great music, hellava hard name to remember. Hanni, have you ever considered changing your name to Hank K. Tibbs? or maybe Hank White? Those are both pretty rockin’ names!
D Wade: On Time by Soledad Brothers- This duo was an early influence on Jack. The band hails from a place potentially shittier than Detroit- “Lil’ Detroit,” better known as Toledo, OH.
Otherguy: New Ornithology by The Mess Hall. Australian garage rock and keep in mind in that part of the world, the word “garage” rhymes with “carriage.” (I’m not making this up!) Doesn’t it seem like a great tragedy that Jack has never shared his thoughts on ornithology?