The White Stripes, Icky Thump (2007)

Icky Thump is the sixth full-length studio album by The White Stripes. In ways I can’t fully express, this rock duo continues to prove that sometimes less is more. As usual their minimalist, garage rock has a surprisingly full sound quality. This CD is perfect for cranking the volume up to 11 and rocking out as you cruise down the highway. Jack White has always brought a blues flavor to his previous works but that flavor is more fully fleshed out on this album, and unquestionably makes itself known through straightforward, up-tempo, blues-rock songs like “Rag & Bone” and “Catch Hell Blues.”

The White Stripes also branch out a bit from their usual fare with Celtic and Spanish influences on “Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn” and “Conquest.” This album is able to come out as good ol’ rock’n’roll while probing big questions at the same. Take the following lyrics from “Little Cream Soda” as an example:

Well every beautiful thing I come across
tells me to stop moving and shake this riddle off. Oh Well.
And there was a time when all I wanted was my ice cream colder,
and a little cream soda. Oh Well, Oh Well.
And a wooden box, and an alley full of rocks was all I had to care about.
Oh Well, Oh Well, Oh Well.

Now my mind is filled with rubber tires,
and forest fires, and whether I’m a liar,
and lots of other situations where I don’t know
what to do at which time God
screams to me, “There’s nothing left for me to tell you.”
Oh Well, Oh Well, Oh Well.

If this album is any indication of things to come, The White Stripes will be putting out quality music for years to come.