Album Review

Lazaretto

Lazaretto

by Jack White


Third Man Records
7.5 / 10
17 June 2014

Reviewed by Paul Larsen


Jack White’s newest solo record is a veritable walk down history lane. Featuring lyrics and poetry written by his teenage self and later rediscovered in a dusty attic, Lazaretto also boasts a museum’s worth of bygone instruments and styles reinvented, renewed and put proudly on display. Steeped in tradition though it may be, it’s another thing all together to create a record that can be called timeless.

While 2012’s first solo record, Blunderbuss was grounded for the most part in the blues-rock roots of White’s musical origins, Lazaretto explores further the nooks and crannies between base genres. From the honky tonk piano of ‘Just One Drink’ to the warped and reversed violin of instrumental ‘High Ball Stepper’, the soundscape is fittingly diverse. White’s younger self was clearly a bit of an angst-ridden soul as well. Recurring lyrical themes could only have been lifted from diary of a teenage bohemian, like that of personal freedom: “Every time I'm doing what I want to, somebody comes and tells me it’s wrong,” and jilted love: “How come I gotta have a woman to blow these blues away?”

Adolescent as the sentiment may be, the 11 tracks that make up Lazaretto are for the most part fully formed and gratifying. There is of course the occasional element of over-indulgence that White is liable to disappear into now and again which keeps it from being a classic but Lazaretto remains a solid reminder of White’s increasingly legendary status in the rock and roll annals.





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Memory lane, surely.
Posted by 38071 2 years ago



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