One of the most amazing aspects of listening to the White Stripes is that their recordings sound like the duo of Jack and Meg White are musician friends who invited you over to listen to their latest creations. Sonically, Jack White's production sounds as if you are sitting there with him and Meg as an audience of one. Not all of the songs work perfectly, but many are amazing and astonishingly direct.
Expanding instrumental palette
On Get Behind Me Satan the duo's instrumental palette continues to expand beyond simple guitar and drums. A marimba figures prominently on "The Nurse," and piano seems to be everywhere. However, the most amazing instrument in the White Stripes' arsenal remains Meg White's idiosyncratic, almost naive, approach to playing the drums. Listen to "The Denial Twist" and revel in the sound of a real cymbal so rarely heard in today's pop music recordings.
Jack White's country roots
In the time between the White Stripes' last album Elephant and their new album Get Behind Me Satan Jack White has gained acclaim as outside producer and musician particular with his work on Loretta Lynn's phenomenal Van Lear Rose. He shared in a Grammy Award for the classic country meets Detroit rock Lynn and White duet on "Portland, Oregon." On Get Behind Me Satan Jack shows off his country chops with the homey jam "Little Ghost."
Rejection and the inner psyche
Lyrically, the Whites continue to mine the overlooked corners of personal interaction from the "it's the ones we least suspect" warnings of "The Nurse" to Meg's cryptic warnings of the difference between a "father and a lover" on "Passive Manipulation." Jack White also explores the impact of rejection on the psyche in his tale of fan rejection on "Take, Take, Take" and the doorbell that never rings on "My Doorbell."
Bracing gust of fresh air
Listeners should never approach White Stripes recordings expecting mainstream slick pop production. The meticulously stripped down production here provides an immediacy rarely heard in today's pop and rock music. For that alone, Get Behind Me Satan is another bracing gust of fresh air. For many other reasons from Jack White's obvious affection for traditional American popular music to the sheer joy of the Led Zeppelin style raveup on "Instinct Blues" Get Behind Me Satan is an album that demands to be heard.