The Raconteurs

The Raconteurs

The Raconteurs

Dr. Dog

Orlando, FL • Sept. 20, 2006

Brendan Benson and Jack White

Jen Cray
Brendan Benson and Jack White

My generation may have missed out on Led Zeppelin, but we’ve got Jack White.

Here’s the part where I unabashedly praise the man’s divine kills as a musician and songwriter and go so far as to say: Jack White silenced the death rattle of rock music with The White Stripes and has gone on to ensure the future of modern music with The Raconteurs. Was I excited to see the band- which pairs White with the brilliantly underesimated Brendan Benson and the solid Greenhornes rhythm section of Patrick Keeler and Jack Lawrence- play live? Truth be known, I was sick to my stomach with anticipation!

Opening with a 45 minute warm-em-up set of Beatles-inspired psychedelic rock was Dr. Dog. The classic pop sounds with a modern twist had the audience cheering for the modest band from Philadelphia. With two vocalists and an eclectic combination of sounds- from Beach Boys sweet harmonies to Pixies eccentricities- Dr. Dog were a perfect fit for the night’s big bill.

Dr. Dog

Jen Cray
Dr. Dog

As I secured my spot front and center in the photo pit, the idle chatter behind me suddenly ceased and evolved into a roar as the house lights fell and 1, 2, 3, 4, the Raconteurs stepped onto the Hard Rock Live stage. An instrumental improvisation loosely following the chord progressions of “Hands” only furthered the 3,000 fans’ building pandemonium. From the second the intro turned into “Intimate Secretary,” we were all on a roller coaster ride where the twists, drops, and rolls got increasingly more fierce.

There are bands that sound great live. They nail every note, sound just like they do on record, and there’s nothing wrong with having that kind of consistency… but when you get together a group of musicians who are so in tune with one another that the songs can ebb and flow with seemingly no vocal communication between band members and sound so tight that they seem to have spent hours rehearsing the subtle changes- then you have a truly exciting live band. Take a guess at which kind of band The Raconteurs are.

The Raconteurs

Jen Cray
The Raconteurs

They’ve only got one album of tunes to pull from so in between those 10 perfect melodies we were gifted with diverse covers. We’re witness to “It Ain’t Easy” (David Bowie) and an unbelievable rendition of Nancy Sinatra’s “Bang Bang.” The song had already reached high levels of cool when Quentin Tarantino used it for the shocking opening sequence of Kill Bill, but The Racs have rocketed the song even further out of the “cool” stratosphere.

The Raconteurs

Jen Cray
The Raconteurs

The camaraderie between bandmates- particularly between White and Benson- should squash any doubts that this band is merely a side project. They seem to be genuinely having a blast onstage, and it’s nice to see Jack relaxed and smiling onstage. Free of his White Stripes persona he can shake free the restraints he placed upon himself in that band and explore new terrain. (Note: But Jack, don’t hang up the red, white and black outfits for good. You’ll break my heart if ya do!)

The Raconteurs are in the infancy of what is sure to be a monumental career.

To see more photos of this and other shows, go to jencray.com.

www.theraconteurs.com

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Jeremiah Lockwood
    Jeremiah Lockwood

    A Great Miracle: Jeremiah Lockwood’s Guitar Soli Chanukah Album (Reboot). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

  • Metallica: The $24.95 Book
    Metallica: The $24.95 Book

    From an underground band that pioneered the thrash metal sound, to arguably the biggest rock act in the new millennium, Metallica has had a long and tumultuous history. Ben Apatoff scours a myriad of sources to catalog this history in his new book.

  • Araceli Lemos
    Araceli Lemos

    Shortly after AFI Fest 2021 wrapped, Generoso spoke at length with director, Araceli Lemos about her award-winning and potent feature debut, Holy Emy. Lemos’s film uses elements of body horror in her story about the exoticization of two Filipina sisters living in Greece and how that exploitation creates a distance between them.

  • Southern Accents 55
    Southern Accents 55

    A woofin’ good time with cuts from Hank Williams, Muddy Waters, Delta Moon and more from KMRD 96.9, Madrid, New Mexico!

  • Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead
    Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

    Absurdism with a healthy dose of air conditioning.

  • Mixtape 172 :: My Old Bassist
    Mixtape 172 :: My Old Bassist

    Like pre-teens throwing every liquid into the kitchen blender and daring each other to drink the results, Woody and Jeremy fuse all manner of sounds legitimate and profane into some murky concoction that tastes surprisingly good.

  • Demons/Demons 2
    Demons/Demons 2

    Synapse Films reissues Lamberto Bava’s epic ’80s gore-filled movies Demons and Demons 2 in beautiful new editions.

  • Sylvie Courvoisier and Mary Halvorson
    Sylvie Courvoisier and Mary Halvorson

    Searching for the Disappearing Hour (Pyroclastic Records). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

  • Payal Kapadia
    Payal Kapadia

    Earlier this year, director Payal Kapadia was awarded the Oeil d’or (Golden Eye) for best documentary at the 74th Cannes Film Festival for her debut feature, A Night of Knowing Nothing. Lily and Generoso interviewed Kapadia about her poignant film, which employs a hybrid-fiction technique to provide a personal view of the student protests that engulfed Indian colleges and universities during the previous decade.

  • Roger’s and Hammerstein’s Cinderella
    Roger’s and Hammerstein’s Cinderella

    A classic children’s tale re-imagined by America’s greatest composers.

From the Archives