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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The Raconteurs - Consolors of the Lonely

THE RACONTEURS
Consolers Of The Lonely

The reason the rushed release of The Raconteurs’ second album may have snuck under your radar is because, unannounced, it went on sale the very same day it landed on reviewers’ desks. According to the accompanying press release, this was to prevent anyone having the “upper hand” over its reception or perception. Music hacks be damned.

Amongst the familiar rock and blues reminiscence and the big hooks, the major difference between this album and the last seems to be that Brendan Benson has taken a back seat this time round. While the pretty You Don’t Understand Me illustrates his knack of penning a lovely pop melody, much of the album lands closer to Jack White’s other band, most notably Salute Your Solution and The Switch and the Spur, which has horns seemingly lifted straight from Icky Thump.

Although slightly overblown, Consolers… is generally a good album; certainly better than the largely forgettable Broken Boy Soldiers anyway. However, even in its exciting moments it never manages to shift the feeling that this band amounts to less than the sum of its parts. It’s hard to think of The Raconteurs as anything other than Jack White’s bit on the side and, ultimately, this album will do little more than leave his fans longing for him to focus less on side-projects and more on recording with his sister/wife. After all, nothing either of his bands has released over the past couple of years comes close to the White Stripes’ thrilling, minimalist and visceral first few records.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree. borrrrrring Jack. Borrrrring.

Chris said...

This is the signs of a newer group trying to find a voice thats not labeled with a tag of rock, blues, or bluegrass, but what it is is a beautiful mixture of it all. I listened to the album several times and I would put it in the middle of the pack for "Jack White albums." It's not amazing but pretty good.