Jack White has never been straightforward. While his previous projects like The White Stripes and The Raconteurs managed accessibility and abstraction, White’s first solo release, Blunderbuss, fully embraces the strange.
To be blunt, White’s first solo offering may be his strangest release to date; however, his abstraction doesn’t prove fully problematic. With an inherent schizophrenia woven through each track, White presents a departure from the musical landscape listeners are familiar with. In lieu of familiarity, White puts forth some of the most bizarre and ambiguous songs to date.
White’s incorporation of everything from 70’s arena rock to experimental progressive rock make for a truly broad whole. Aside from instrumentation, White’s vocals are top notch. By rooting some of the more unusual musical concepts with adept vocal melody, White is able to weigh down some of the album’s weirdness. But where vocal melody helps to ground the album, White’s lyricism truly explores the vast unknown.
Though it may seem to be a challenging record, Blunderbluss is exactly what a solo record should be, a deviation. White offers new sounds and dabbles in the weird instead of rehashing previous stylings. There are no White Stripes B-sides, or anything of the sort. Here, there are only fully engaging, sometimes challenging, and often charming songs that will keep listener’s coming back.