The Dead Weather — Horehound


The Dead Weather's debut album, Horehound.

Jack White has produced, or rather under-produced, another subliminal retro group. After his matinee project, The Raconteurs, you would have thought that if Jack White were to spawn another band this quickly, you could draw comparable lines. Not so. The Dead Weather are dirty, punchy and horrendously idiosyncratic.

This grouping can’t really be compared to any current mainstream indie. When listening to I Cut Like A Buffalo you get mixed reactions — The Doors instrumentation, Beastie Boys Paul’s Boutique production, and a timbre flair more at home with The Kills. The last part makes perfect sense since The Dead Weather’s leading lady is Alison Mosshart.

The stand-alone femme-fatal has done her fair share of session work with the likes of Placebo, Primal Scream, and The Raconteurs, not to mention being a full-time reveller in Discount and The Kills. Co-writing most of The Dead Weather’s album Horehound, Mosshart’s spluttering musical charm seems boundless. When listening to Hang You From The Heavens, with Jack White’s tight, syncopated drumming and the band’s heavily-fuzzed guitars, Mosshart’s vocals transcend the mix to a really dirty place. The same way PJ Harvey might if she was fuelled by cigarettes, coffee, and despair.

This isn’t the first time the group has put themselves out there. Playing at Glastonbury has undoubtedly been a good move for publicity, but arguably a turning point was their ‘Nokia’s Live from The Basement’ performance late last month, which was unhindered and raw. Broadcast online, the band entered stage right, stubbing cigarettes and live-miking expensive (but battered) instruments, they logically went about their business. Search it out…

Describing the overall sound of the album as ‘gothic blues’, White is consciously thinking about Nashville and what it stands for. Echoing the bygone era of Jeffery Lee Pierce and bands such as The Gun Club, White has clearly made no margin for error in what he perceives as genre. If you get it or not, this record is the resultant factor of astonishing musical prowess coupled with tick-box instrumentation and vocal spontaneity.

It is niche, unparalleled and lustful. White and Mosshart look to do well in their manufactured field…

Download: Hang You From The Heavens, Treat Me Like Your Mother.

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