Monday, January 22, 2007

The White Stripes - Get Behind Me Satan


THE WHITE STRIPES - Get Behind Me Satan

I can't lie and say the first album I heard off this list made me want to keep going.

I've never heard anything else from The White Stripes other than a live show I saw on VH1. I can't say this album has convinced me to seek out anything further.

It's not TERRIBLE, but it's close. Ok it's terrible. With some albums you don't like, you can still appreciate the talent of the musicians, the clever lyrics or the melodies that just didn't quite get there for *you*. Not so with "Get Behind Me Satan".

Most of the lyrics are entirely forgettable and simplistic. When they're not, they're filled with terrible word plays like "And it's hidden in the wisdom in the back of your tooth". The Nurse, a song about betrayal, had lyrics bad enough to give me a flash back to year 9 English. The lyrics aren't clever, and some of the phrasing is downright clunky.
The kind of cute little ditty "Little Ghost" is fun for the first minute, but sounds like an average band's funny b-side they'd never allow on an album. The faux country sound only serves to make me cring.

They only seem to have one trick - when you want to get loud, bang really hard on the piano. This pretty much invades every song and so the entire album feels like one big thump thump. It is worse on "The Nurse", where for some inexplicable reason, big piano thumps and occasionally loud guitar playing interrupts what little "mood" the song was going for. This might have been an attempt to create a sense of madness/unpredictability in line with the psychotic overtones of the lyrics, but it simply doesn't work.

None of the songs really go anywhere. Many of them follow a pattern of THUMP THUMP, get quiet, MORE THUMPS, the end. None of this really creates any actual tension and release in any of the songs - it ends up just sounding like clunky noise.

There isn't much to redeem the album. The first track, Blue Orchid was fairly enjoyable and the guitar work was fun. My doorbell has the best melody, but it's not enough to save anything else.

A special mention needs to be made of track 9, "Passive Manipulation". Meg....cannot sing. And should never be allowed to sing again! Thank goodness this track was only 35 seconds long because it sounded like a lost audition tape they'd show on a "World's worst Idol" show.
The lyrics:
Women, listen to your mothers
Don't just succumb to the wishes of your brothers
Take a step back, take a look at one another
You need to know the difference...
Between a father and a lover (repeat)

One can only hope it was meant to be a joke of some sort.

SCORE - 3/10

BEST TRACKS - Blue Orchid, My Doorbell, Little Ghost

RECOMMENDED - Only to my enemies


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