Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Jack White's Lazaretto

Rolling Stone 5 June 2014
I've been waiting for Jack to return. And I received the magazine before I had the record in hand. So it was kind of interesting to read him before the listen.

Of all of the tidbits that surfaced in the interview- most notably his relationship with Meg White, or lack thereof, his keen eye to antique mechanical devices, and his Catholic upbringing in Detroit- it's his view of the sexes that I found ... charming. 

He 'has spoken in interviews about the death of chivalry and how "natural ideas and natural instincts in the male or female personalities" are "being sacrificed for the idea of equality".' Why charming? Because he recognizes the difference and celebrates it. He regards those who see his work as misogynist to be unaware of his body of work and the women that he has worked along side. And I will tell you that Jack White was not on my radar much until he put out that record with Loretta Lynn. I fell in love with it ... not so much a country fan, but enough that I would give it a listen, the record embodied all that is Loretta Lynn, her fierce strength and femininity, and a slight scorch that is White's manly brand. He did the same for Karen Elson's, his ex-wife's, album. I probably wouldn't have bought it if it hadn't been for the fact that I knew he would be layered through it. For that, it doesn't only honor the difference between the sexes, it pulls out the best part of each to make the perfect storm of sound.

As for Lazaretto, which has since been released, I've listened to it ... oh, about 30 times. I'm still stuck on the title track and have listened to it more than the whole. The video for it is mesmerizing. The images are sharp, slightly perverse, and so cool. Jack's guitar doesn't put blisters on my fingers as I'm not playing it, but it puts them on my heart. It heats to a boil and blisters ... no tonic could soothe it except to listen to it again.

I would love to be a nail in one of Jack's beloved restoration projects, beautifully restored, and tucked in a corner of his work space. I can imagine the magic that he produces there and the wonderful freedom it would demonstrate of a man with talents to make everything around him better than they were ever intended to become.

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