Jack White played to a jam-packed o2 arena last week, but it wasn’t like most nights at the venue. Eimear Shannon of The Daily Shift reviews White Stripes rockers performance…
There was truly no better time for the unique rocker to play in Ireland than on a spooky Halloween evening. True to form, the crowd was dressed up for the occasion and zombies, ghouls and even a few Jack White’s peppered the crowd.
With over eleven albums as an artist, and countless others as a producer, the Southern Gentleman is certainly not without plenty of options for a stellar set list. Even though this tour is his first as a solo artist and is promoting his solo album Blunderbuss, this did not mean his incredible back catalogue was left behind. White began his set with an apology to the crowd, “I’m sorry it’s been a while, I was helping some kids down the road build a bonfire.” From this point on, the crowd was ready to forgive him.
Backed by an all female band, the sheer talent that Jack White encompasses is only all too obvious. Acting almost as a composer, he directed not only the band but also the crowd. For the night, White was a circus ringmaster, and we were his subjects. The stage did not need backing dancers, nor expensive pyrotechnics. Rather, the focus was the music, and the crowd did not need anything else.
Taking songs from his extensive back catalogue, fans of the artist were treated to songs from the White Stripes, Dead Weather and The Raconteurs, sandwiched between his solo work. Undoubtedly, old classics such as ‘Hotel Yorba’ and ‘We’re Going To Be Friends’ were the best received by the crowd. Though newer songs such as ‘Love Interruption’ had the crowd chiming in with delight.
What was all too apparent about White is his incredible musicality. Known for being a multi-instrumental musician, he did not disappoint. Throughout the show he not only sang, but played guitar and piano, without skipping a beat. What was perhaps the most astounding was White’s voice. While he may have gained notoriety for his instrumental talent, his voice left concertgoers astounded.
Just as the crowd was getting into it, he left the stage. There was a shocked sense that after only one hour, we were being left to wait for what would be a brief encore. But apparently, an encore is not reduced to a handful of songs for this artist; rather it was another forty minutes of music.
As the opening chords of White’s biggest hit, ‘Seven Nation Army’ blasted across the o2, the crowd erupted. With our circus master conducting a sing-along of the infamous guitar line, White was reduced to giggles and the crowd happily took over.
It was loud, it was brash and my ears are still ringing. It was pure, unadulterated rock and roll and it was exactly what the crowd would expect. With his closing statement to the crowd “ You’ve been wonderful and I’ve been Jack White”, the musical genius left the stage and the crowd was left wondering how he ended up with the monopoly on talent.