The White Stripes Rave (AKA: The Do Believe The Hype Rave)

No ranting today, just raving. Like yin and yang, you've gotta have both for a balanced universe, right?

Anyhow, here's my challenge for all of you: Can anyone name a band that has put out more amazing music over the past 10 years than The White Stripes? I know I can't. I mean, it's pretty obvious that they have no real competition over the past 5 or 6 years - who else has put out 4 classic albums since 2000? - but what about over the past decade?

Four classic albums in a row is something rarely achieved: The Velvet Underground did it with 4 classic releases between '67 and '70; Joni Mitchell did it starting with "Ladies Of The Canyon" in '70 up until "Court and Spark" in '74; then there was Stevie Wonder, who was on fire all through the 70s; and The Beatles, of course, all through the '60s, especially, for me personally, from "Rubber Soul" onwards; and how about Prince all through the 80s, but even he couldn't sustain it, blowing it with that "Around The World In A Day" album. Both Public Enemy and REM were totally on fire in the '80s right into the early '90s, but it's debatable whether either put out 4 consecutive classic albums. There was Elvis Costello who did it between '77 and '79. And The Who, Randy Newman, Van Morrison and Led Zeppelin all arguably did it in the late-60s and early-70s - what a time to have been out there buying new records! Otis did it in the mid-'60s. And, of course, there was Bruce Springsteen between '73 and '87 (what a run!!). Most incredible of all was CCR's run of 4 or 5 (depending on how high you rate "Pendulum") classic albums in 2 (yes, two!!!) years back in 1969/70!!

Then there were The Stones, who from '68 to '72 were absolutely perfect, releasing 4 of the greatest albums ever made, one after another: "Beggars Banquet", "Let It Bleed", "Sticky Fingers" and "Exile On Main Street". And let's not forget The Bob who did it between '64 and '66 with the consecutive releases of "Another Side Of Bob Dylan", "Bringing It All Back Home", and the incredible "Highway 61 Revisited" and "Blonde On Blonde". Amazingly, he then came back the next year, in '67, with yet another classic, "John Wesley Harding". That's 5 all-time classics in 4 years! Actually 6, since "The Basement Tapes" was recorded, but not released, at that time as well. But, hey, that's The Bob.

Ok, so it's been done before, but not that often. Four classics in a row: Aretha Franklin couldn't do it; Marvin Gaye couldn't pull it off; neither could The Clash; nor could Neil Young; nor Sinead O'Connor; nor The Red Hot Chili Peppers; and neither could Nirvana, nor Pearl Jam; and, no, not even U2 could do it, not unless you consider "Rattle and Hum" a classic album.

The White Stripes are the real deal. I don't think anyone else comes close when it comes to producing amazing music over the last decade. I hear calls of "What about Outkast?", to which I say two classics so far, not 4. They're halfway there though. Four brilliant albums in a row by Jack and Meg White (who alone make up The White Stripes): 2000's "De Stijl", 2001's "White Blood Cells", 2003's "Elephant" and this year's "Get Behind Me Satan". All classics! (And their first album is great too). Fantastic band! Fantastic music! Hard rockin' and heavily rooted in blues and country (and, hey, that's what rock 'n' roll is all about). Old, yet clearly new. If you like rock 'n' roll go out and buy these albums. It's that simple.

However, if your idea of rock is Mariah Carey, The Backstreet Boys, Britney, N'Sync or any of that other crap, then put your wallet away, turn on American Idol, forget about The White Stripes and shut up already - damn! (A little Prince quote there - couldn't resist). For all the rest of you, get out there and buy buy buy. You won't be sorry. If you can only afford one, then I'd probably recommend you start with the newest one, "Get Behind Me Satan", which just came out in June.

So, yes, do believe the hype! Remember that most of those artists named in the previous paragraphs were all heavily hyped as well, no one greater than The Beatles. But, hey, the hype was warranted, wasn't it? And so it is once again with The White Stripes.

Time to go shopping.

Mike Cowie (Oredakedo)
Sunday, August 14th, 2005


To read about The White Stripes in concert click here: Doing Lines With The White Stripes and The New Magnificent Seven


And to read about another great concert click here: The Amazing Adventures of Todd Snider and The Magnificent Seven


Or here: Oh What A Night: Todd Snider Live (and John Rogers Fully Exposed)

And for more on other artists and albums click here: Music Homepage

Or here: Music: Album and Concert Raves

And for all things Bob Dylan click here: The Bob (as in Dylan)


MikesAndDislikes Home


Hate to weigh in with a band that most despise, but since you mentioned strings of great albums, the Moody Blues released seven in a row between 1967 and 1972. All were huge at the time in Europe and America, and still sell respecably. It's pretty trendy these days to diss this band - they are not in the Hall of Fame mostly because Jann Wenner doesn't dig them. Also they are touring as a nostalgia act, which detracts from the appeal of the original work (although Beach Boys classic albums are still well-regarded despite Mike Love's awful current touring version). But recall that in the early-mid-80s, the Grateful Dead were regarded as self-indulgent noodlers best left on the scrap-heap of rock history. Since then they have become recognized for the brilliant outfit they were. I hope the same fate awaits the Moodies but I'm not optimistic!


The Core-7 Moody Blues albums are: Days of Future Passed, In Search of the Lost Chord, On the Threshold of a Dream, To Our Children's Children's Children, A Question of Balance, Every Good Boy Deserves Favour, Seventh Sojourn. Give these a spin. Understated mellotron does not detract from Hayward's unique gitar playing and the production, though lush for those days, sounds almost minimalist compared to most of today's pop music.

Thanks Jack and Meg

A sad day today, with The White Stripes announcing they're splitting up!


I'm going to put them on right now. I propose a toast to the amazing band that called me back to contemporary music appreciation back in 2004. I wasn't paying any attention to popular music AT ALL. I happened to be staying at a friend's house who had cable, so I decided to check out MTV, not feeling very optimistic, but curious. It was a bad sign when I realised that the MTV Music awards were on and I almost turned it off, but they announced that the White Stripes were performing live next so I figured I'd check it out...I really had no idea what to expect. I had heard the name and must have heard something that was enough to keep me watching. Holy Shit! My jaw was on the floor. All alone, I was talking to myself, cheering them on: "Fuck yeah!", "Oh my God", etc... I was totally blown away by their raw rock/blues power, skill and chemistry. The way Jack would just stand in front of Meg and play with her and wasn't hand-slapping the front row and mugging for the camera. Then on top of that, their simple visual creativity with their red and white semi-psychedelic motif. It was hitting all the right nerves. After that, I was actually inspired to start checking out new music again.


So, Cheers to the White Stripes for bringing me back. Thanks Jack and Meg.


And check this out:


The White Stripes - 'Jolene'


A sad day indeed!