The Raconteurs are a new band made up of old friends, consisting of Jack Lawrence (bass), Patrick Keeler (drums), Brendan Benson (guitars, vocals, keys) and Jack White (guitars, vocals, keys). The seed was sewn in an attic in the middle of a hot summer when friends Jack White and Brendan Benson got together and wrote a song that truly inspired them. This song was "Steady, As She Goes" and the inspiration led to the creation of a full band with the addition of Lawrence and Keeler. While each of these four individuals have had successful careers with their own bands, the culmination of all of their talents is what truly makes The Raconteurs a force to be reckoned with.
The quartet convened at Benson's East Grand Studio to lay down the basic tracks for Broken Boy Soldiers. Work would continue whenever the boys could get together over the next year. The band is now, for its members, all consuming and they now present themselves to be consumed, or at best simply heard.
From the ready-made, radio-friendly quality built into songs like "Steady, As She Goes", to the explosive tenacity of "Store Bought Bones", all the way down to the "hits the cockles of your heart" lullabies that encompass the full length recording, The Raconteurs are more than capable of conquering any genre challenge or tale that they encounter. After all, a raconteur is, by definition, a deft storyteller. And now a new story is unfolding.
In forming The Raconteurs, four old friends from Detroit have done the unexpected, they've produced an irresistible and emotional album. This is no self indulgent side-project, Jack White is clearly enjoyingliving with the luxury of musical freedom. "You gotta to learn to live / and live and learn" he muses in "Together".
Standing quite apart from the strict minimalism associated with The White Stripes, this debut is contentedly uninhibited. Tracks hop deftly from Brendan Benson's trademark tender melodies on "Hands" to the quirky pop of "Yellow Sun", with stunning results.
The playful rhythms of "Steady As She Goes" lie in pleasing contrast to the empathetic, angry blues of closing track "Blue Veins". These stylistic twists and turns hold your interest throughout.
Broken Boy Soldiers is proof that The Raconteurs have stories worth telling. Are you ready for the next chapter? --Shalinee Singh
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