It’s a good thing Jack White has stepped back behind a drum set, because after allegedly threatening to beat up Black Keys drummer Patrick Carney in a New York bar earlier last month, White obviously needs to beat on something. Looks like he’s channeled all that punk-rock aggression and raw power into a new album.
It has been half a decade since the garage rock supergroup, The Dead Weather, has put out an album, and understandably so. The star-studded ensemble has trouble getting into the same room together, much less record an album. When White is working with rock crooner Alison Mosshart (The Kills), bassist Jack Lawrence (City and Colour), and guitarist/keyboardist Dean Fertita (Queens of the Stone Age), it’s imagined that there might be conflicting schedules. Yet, Dodge and Burn was released September 25, 2015.
Dodge and Burn is the Dead Weather’s third studio album, however, it has been announced that the group does not plan on touring in support of the new album. This can also be attributed to the fact that the band serves as an extracurricular when the members’ aren’t focusing on their main projects, allowing them to use the Dead Weather as a laboratory to experiment with a raw, unrefined energy. The result is a ferocious album agitated by White’s uninhibited drum kit, Mosshart’s demonic vocals and Fertita’s paroxysmal riffs.
Dodge and Burn opens with a heavy riff on “I Feel Love,” a muddy, no-nonsense blues track that showcases Mosshart howling capricious and abstract lines like “What does the blacktop / Know that I have not / Cracked with my mind.” Many of the albums tracks were released years prior to the album dropping, such as “Rough Detective.” Although White is facing a drum kit, he does not hide behind it in this masterfully composed duet, with White and Mosshart throwing verses back and forth.
The Dead Weather uses the final track “Impossible Winner” as an opportunity to show their softer side. The heartfelt piano ballad, accompanied by a section of strings, is the only one of its kind on the album, not to mention the only one of its kind in their entire discography. The track feels less as a nightcap and more like being doused with a cold bucket of water. Despite the tangent, The Dead Weather has succeeded once again in dropping a scuzz-rock record, rank with nasty licks that are sure to please.