Guitar hero Jack White presents his peaceful side with "Entering Heaven Alive", his second album of the year

Guitar hero Jack White presents his peaceful side with “Entering Heaven Alive”, his second album of the year

Jack White hadn’t released anything solo for 4 years, but he made up for it this year with the publication of two albums four months apart: Fear of The Dawn April 8 and Entering Heaven Alive this Friday, July 22. Presented as two opposing sides, one furiously electric while the second is more folk and peaceful, the two were nevertheless composed at the same time, last year, during confinement, in his studio in Nashville.

Initially, the former White Stripes thought it would just be a bit of an eclectic album”but the songs didn’t come together, the chemistry didn’t take. They had to be separated to make two separate discs” who have “each their own personality“, he explained this week at the microphone of France Inter, which broadcast the last of his three concerts at the Olympia on Wednesday July 20 as part of his tour. Supply Chain Issues (explosive concert to review elsewhere at the bottom of this article via Arte Concert).

But why not make it a double album? Because the congestion of the few vinyl pressing factories is such today, including for Jack White, the only musician in the world to have his own pressing factory in Detroit backed by his Third Man Records label, that it was a relief for all the world.

One thing is certain, the two albums are really different. As much Fear of The Dawn (fear of dawn) was boosted and teeming with audacious sound experiments, as much Entering Heaven Alive (Entering the Living Paradise) is calm and biblically simple. Jack White is in a romantic vein here as the record offers a fine collection of love songs that he swears have nothing to do with his marriage this year to singer and musician Olivia Jean of the Black Belles, whose marriage he asked. hand on stage as the tour kicks off in Detroit on April 8.

On this new album, the musician known for his wild guitar riffs further demonstrates his art of classic, effective songwriting, full of beautiful harmonies, as on Love is Selfish (above) and If I Die Tomorrow (below). If we know his love of the Beatles, attested in particular in his group The Raconteurs, it is rather the Rolling Stones that we think of when listening to the opening track A Tip From You To Me. Acoustic guitar, piano and choirs: this formula dominates the eleven tracks on this album. Beatles accents will come with Help Me Alongwhere a playful violin intertwines with the notes of an electric piano.

Only one title deviates resolutely from the path: I’ve Got You Surrounded (With My Love), which could have appeared on Fear of The Dawn. Placed at the heart of the disc, it risks being decried but we like its jazz accents mixed with the wah wah pedal. We also love the bare A Madman from Manhattanwhere his nonchalant, almost rap-like phrasing works wonders, a real delicacy to the ear, which sometimes takes on Robert Plant accents.

If the songs of this second album of the year are less daring than those of its predecessor, Jack White has the art of always coming out of the nails at one time or another, warding off the pitfall of songs that are too predictable. He proves it right to the end, closing the album with a surprising acoustic version of Taking Me Back, the frenzied title that opened Fear of The Dawn. The circle is complete.

“Entering Heaven Alive” by Jack White (Third Man Records/The Orchard) will be released on Friday July 22, 2022

Watch Jack White’s explosive concert at the Olympia on July 20, 2022 provided by Arte

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