233 of 254 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant display of artistic growth
This album will make or break a "true" White Stripes fan. The change is HUGE, and I'm certainly not complaining. I'm happy that The White Stripes have the balls to constantly experiment and bring something new to the table, time and time again. Most notably, casual fans are going to miss Jack's wailing guitar solos and time signatures. His artistic vision is channeled...
Published on June 8, 2005 by Alan Pounds
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Getting behind
Sooner or later, it had to happen. The White Stripes have made an album that is Not Great.
Granted, it's not terrible either. But "Get Behind Me Satan" is perhaps the weakest album the Stripes have yet put out, after four albums of solid, bluesy rock'n'roll. And what is wrong with it, exactly? It feels unfinished, like a wonderful album that needs another six...
Published on February 21, 2006 by E. A Solinas
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233 of 254 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant display of artistic growth,
This album will make or break a "true" White Stripes fan. The change is HUGE, and I'm certainly not complaining. I'm happy that The White Stripes have the balls to constantly experiment and bring something new to the table, time and time again. Most notably, casual fans are going to miss Jack's wailing guitar solos and time signatures. His artistic vision is channeled through piano, marimba, tambourine, and acoustic guitar (although their is some electric guitar lurking around in the mix). While other bands try to replicate the magic of their freshman debut, The White Stripes are busy honing their skill, creating music that has soul, feeling, and ideas (all executed within a 2 week recording session). This subsequently feels like a retreat to their "little room" from the staggering success of "Elephant". They've locked the door and threw away the key to make whatever they see fit, which merits even more respect. Screw the bigwigs, the "true" fans want to hear a intimate recording by these two creative forces, which is exactly what they brought us.
The first cut "Blue Orchid" is a thrilling metal number, reminiscent of past material, but still different. By the end of that song, they slip back into their little room to stun listeners throughout the rest of the record. "The Nurse" is very experimental. Meg's drums sound like a series of explosions over Jack's piano and marimba, along with his soft lyrical delivery. But I have to say, it's "My Doorbell" that sinks it's hook into you. It's a little reminiscent of the "Hotel Yorba" days, with Jack's quick, happy go lucky lyrics. It's actually very catchy, and stands in stark contrast to the previous cuts. Up next is "Forever for Her (Is Over for Me)" where Jack sings ever so passionately. It's one of the most well written songs on the album. But then comes my personal favorite, "Little Ghost". Jack and Meg belt out this soulful number with a brilliant country bluegrass swagger that is simply irresistible. "The Denial Twist" is fantastically driven by piano and tambourine. The presence of Rita Hayworth also plays a significant role on songs such as "White Moon" and the dazzling "Take, Take, Take". The rockers closest to the material on "Elephant", "Instinct Blues" and "Red Rain" should please all White Stripes fans. Meg does a fantastic job with her vocals on "Passive Manipulation" were she boasts the very effective lyric - "Women, listen to your mothers / Don't just succumb to the wishes of your brothers / Take a step back, take a look at one another / You need to know the difference between a father and a lover". "As Ugly as I Seem" is a very simple acoustic guitar flavored tune. I can't think of a better song they could have used to close out the album, than "I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet)". Jack's lush voice and beautiful piano work will leave your head swaying just like Meg's head would be at a live show.
Needless to say, I am quite impressed with this album. But I'm sure some of you will be sorely disappointed with their new direction. Personally, I would be in heaven if all of my favorite bands made albums the way The Stripes do. I would rather hear something completely original, than to hear "Elephant" part 2. If I want to hear riveting guitar solos, I'll listen to "Elephant". If I want to listen to Jack's blues-rock perfection, I will listen to "De Stijl" (It's nice to have choices). But in no way does "Get Behind Me Satan" pale in comparison to it's predecessors. Their discography is on it's way to being just as staggering as Beck's. They're all brilliant works of originality. And although it may push away some casual fans, The Stripes are at their best when they push themselves to their limits.
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Higher Plane,
Good-bye to the casual fan; hello new sound. The White Stripes got popular with simple, catchy, and very creative songs. From De Stijl, to White Blood Cells, to Elephant, their popularity skyrocketed as their songs and albums got better and better. As everyone could tell, their style peaked at Elephant. So, I was expecting to be disappointed by Get Behind Me Satan because how could it be better than Elephant?
I was wrong. Like David Bowie with Aladdin Sane (after Ziggy Stardust), The White Stripes did not try to best Elephant, they altered their style and have written their best and most intricate songs yet. In short, they took a step back and sideways to go forward.
Just pick a great song. "Red Rain" is Jack White's most creative song to date and it's melodic in the most interesting way. "The Nurse," with it's seemingly random but calculated guitar crunches and it's purposeful lack of a real chorus, it has all the elements of great indie rock. "Take Take Take" is an off-rhythm harmony that's probably the best melody in the White Stripes catalogue.
You've heard the White Stripes go country before, but on "Little Ghost" Jack pushes to bluegrass and still makes it work. The textures and layering of the song are beautiful. "My Doorbell" is probably the song that is most representative of their former style on this album. It's simple, catchy, and funny. "As Ugly as I Seem" has great transitions and the patient notes come off perfectly.
After an album of experimentation and great results, the White Stripes have all the credibility they need to write a traditional closing song which is still really good anyway. Even when they write formulaic songs they elevate above the formula.
This album cements the White Stripes as a classic rock band. Without hesitation, I'd put them and Radiohead up there with The Doors, Pink Floyd, R.E.M., Nirvana, and so forth.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it!,
I have now listened to this album all the way through 2 times and I must say it's fantastic. I think The White Stripes are the best rock band of our time and the fact that every album they produce sounds distinctly different from their last is very refreshing.
I noticed that most of the people who dislike this album say something like "But Elephant blah, blah, blah", get over it, this album is not Elephant. And to be honest Elephant was my least favorite album, it sounded to polished and really lacked the rawness that you could hear in De Stijl or White Blood Cells.
If you are only familiar with The White Stripes through Elephant this album may not be the best choice for you, however if you really liked all of their other albums then you probably have some understanding of what kind of band they are and would like Get Behind Me Satan.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The White Stripes Transitional Masterpiece,
Absolutely floored by the new album. I'll preface this by saying that if you are expecting a redux of Elephant, you will be disappointed. If you're open to new sounds, new influences, you're going to love this. Get Behind Me Satan is the White Stripes "Rubber Soul" or, to appease those who cry blasphemy at such a comparison, "Led Zeppelin III," a transition from the songs and structures we as fans have become familar with to a new, unchartered and experimental territory. And it works wonderfully. There are no more than four "guitar" songs on the new album in the typical White Stripes style. The majority of the songs are based on piano, with a few (most notable "The Nurse")on marimba and maracas. But make no mistake- this is not an album of humdrum piano ballads. Meg White's primal drumming is the link between the classic guitar heroics and blues chords and the new, progressive markings of this album. Several songs ("Little Ghost") also hint at Jack's recent work with Loretta Lynn, for which both received Grammy nominations.
A friend asked me to describe the album- the best that I could say is that, it sounds like no other White Stripes album, but by the same token, no one besides The White Stripes could make this. While the guitars take a back seat, make no mistakes- this is a WHITE STRIPES album- and their finest to date.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Yipes, Stripes!,
Stashing the noisy guitar for a piano to bang on, Jack White decided to take a crossroads left at the Delta of The Blues. The result is an album he bragged about recording in a two week blast. "Get Behind Me Satan" is lo-fi racket without the volume, an album where the marimba plays leads and Meg sings a snippet of a song ("Passive Manipulation"). For a band that prides itself on eclecticism, this is their most left field CD to date.
The time dreaming up Loretta Lynn songs had their influence on "Get Behind Me Satan." "Little Ghost" and "I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet)" sound like they were meant for Lynn's "Van Leer Rose" project. (I wonder if Dwight Yoakum is flattered by the song-title swipe?) Some of the songs are by contrast humorous ("Take Take Take" - the misbegotten tale of an obsessed fan) to lovely ("Forever For Her Is Over for Me"). Jack White is proving to be a pretty crack songsmith. (His work with the Racountours offers further proof in that department.)
The primitivism that some deride about "Get Behind Me Satan" is actually one of the album's charms for me. There is still something cool about hearing a band play with their blemishes showing. In an age where singers back out of TV appearances if they think their pre-recorded "live" vocal overdubs don't sound complimentary, I am completely OK with The White Stripes deliberately NOT spending three years performing cosmetic surgery in the studio. Even the songs that sound like they need a little work ("Instinct Blues") are entertaining, because "Get Behind Me Satan" is meant to be a long-player. This isn't a collection of singles and easy to MP3 ring-tones. This is a CD meant to be played and followed through the scope of its many diverse ideas and eccentric songs/production. Jack and Meg White are invested in their music enough to take risks and allow the chips to fall where they may. It makes "Get Behind Me Satan" a beacon of hope among the squeaky clean factory bands trying to sell you cookie cutter rock.
78 of 99 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Multi-colored Stripes,
The White Stripes have gone heads and shoulders above other bands in the retro-rock circuit since they're debut. They've stood out through their mind-boggling two-man(one man, one woman to be specific) attack, their genra defying style of rock, and Jack White's unmatched witty and profound songwriting. With each album the band seems to get better and putting other bands to shame. Now with their fifth release they have yet again blown the competition away.
The album starts out with the raunchy first single "Blue Orchid" a little ditty that must bring a smile to the face of any fan of The Darkness. Then out of nowhere comes the captivating "The Nurse" comes in to the tune of a childrens show jingle. An even more interestingly the Whites pull off a perfect Jackson 5 sound with the funky, groovy "My Doorbell". Then comes one of the finest songs the Stripes have done yet with "Forever for Her (Is Over for Me)" where Jack's voice tears through the record deep into your heart and there's no doubt he means the words "let's do it, just get on the plane and do it like the birds and the bees, let's do it", regardless who the message belongs to we feel it.
The album rolls along at this great pace and seems to end before the listener is ready and closes with the amazing and straight-forward "I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet).
This may not be The Stripes most successful album or even their best but there is no doubt it is their tightest. Every song keeps it's energetic, if not upbeat, loose style. And the one thing good about being quick it leaves you desiring a second listen and boy is it better with each listen.
Regardless of popular opinion I believe "Get Behind Me Satan" is another step forward for one fo the greatest rock bands in the world.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Get Behind Me Satan" is totally different than anything Jack and Meg have ever done; it is also their best album,
Yeah, you heard me. I love "Elephant." You can read my 5-star review if you like. "Get Behind Me Satan" just barely tops it, but it still tops it.
I'm not even gonna go into detail about all of the people who hate it because it's different. I think if they can't handle The White Stripes like this, then they can just go listen to "Elephant" again.
This album shows so much maturity. Jack White is a musical genius. He can write and play any form of music he wants. There is rock, blues, ballads, bluegrass, even a form of dance on this album alone. And then there is "The Nurse," which is totally in a world of its own. Let's go through the songs.
"Blue Orchid" - One of two songs on this album that sound like "Elephant" White Stripes. It seems that a lot of people who don't like this album overall do like this song just because it sounds similar. I think it's a great song. Jack singing in falsetto sounds great, and the fuzzed guitar sounds awesome. The music video is creepy as hell.
"The Nurse" - This song is just in a world of its own. There is no way to classify this song. The marimba is probably one of the most unlikely instruments ever used to base a song around, but it really works. The random bursts of guitar and drum are kinda weird, but add a cool touch.
"My Doorbell" - I just frickin' love this song. I love everything about it. I love the pounding piano. I love the drums. I love Jack's singing. I love the lyrics. I love the catchiness to it. This is my favorite song on the album, and I will never ever get sick of it. I feel like listening to this song just talking about it.
"Forever For Her (Is Over For Me)" - An excellent song with very good lyrics. The piano and marimba blend really well.
"Little Ghost" - My second favorite song on the album, and without a doubt the most underrated. Yes, I like bluegrass music, which is probably why I like it in the first place, but there is just something great about this song. The lyrics are really good for this type of song, and the harmonies between Jack, Meg, and...Jack again are great. There's definitely a Loretta Lynn touch in here.
"The Denial Twist" - Another infectious song. The fast singing fits in perfectly. And if you ever take time to look them up, the lyrics are awesome. The piano and minimal guitar (you have to listen closely for it) go really good together.
"White Moon" - One of the best ballads The White Stripes have ever done. Amazing heartfelt words and awesome piano playing.
"Instinct Blues" - This song is sort of like a second coming of "Ball and Biscuit." No, it doesn't have 4 guitar solos, but it is really heavy and bluesy. The lyrics are interesting to say the least, and it is a great song to jam out to.
"Passive Manipulation" - A nice little 35 second ditty sang by Meg. While not as good as "In the Cold, Cold Night," it's still a pretty good song.
"Take, Take, Take" - This is another really good song. There is an awesome blend of piano and acoustic guitar. The lyrics are repetitive at times, but I don't mind too much. The second song concerning Rita Hayworth ("White Moon" is the first).
"As Ugly As I Seem" - My third favorite song on the album. This contains some of the best guitar playing Jack has ever done, acoustic or electric (this song is acoustic). The bongos add a really nice touch, and the lyrics are incredible. This almost sounds like a long-lost Bob Dylan song.
"Red Rain" - The second song that wouldn't sound out of place on "Elephant." The lyrics don't matter in this one. The guitar playing is phenomenal, and Meg's drums are explosive as ever.
"I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet)" - This song does what "Well It's True That We Love One Another" couldn't: it closes out the album perfectly. The lyrics are really good and the piano has a nice country touch to it.
Overall, this album rocks. I don't care who you are, this album is amazing. The White Stripes have matured so much musically that you can't help but admire them. They continue to break new ground with every album, and I already consider them one of the best and most influential bands of all time.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolute brilliance from Jack and Meg,
Don't let the bad reviews fool you.
Well, I do seem to notice a pattern. The bad reviews come, for the most part, from fans who were drawn in by the more radio-friendly rock found on Elephant, the previous album from the White Stripes (and found, to an extent, on some of the Stripes' other albums). If you like the Stripes for "Seven Nation Army," this might not be the album for you; Give it a try, but expect something totally different.
Jack White has clearly been influenced by his recent work with country legend Loretta Lynn, and the blues influences seen in the White Stripes' albums since the very beginning are stronger than ever in this album. It's still rock, but it's an interesting "blues-country-rock" medley. I've never been a country fan (or much of a blues fan), but I am in love with this album.
This is the most original album I've heard from any modern band, and is probably the White Stripes' best. I highly reccomend it.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Damn, these two know what to do!,
In the White Stripes 5th album, "Get Behind Me Satan" we get 13 tracks of exactly what we deserve from the White Stripes, a new album unlike the other 4 in every way. I'll admit I was initially put off by this new offering, but after a second spin I was hooked. What thrills me the most is that this time 'round, a pounding piano has replaced Jack's usual raw guitar. Meg's minimal drumming is great for what it is and for what it is not, but she does get to flex her skills a bit more.
Stand-out tracks include: My Doorbell (possibly my new fav), Little Ghost, I'm lonely, Instinct Blues, and Blue Orchid. It's obvious that Jack's song writing is on a whole new level that was only hinted at in the other records. Above all, this album expands on what the White Stripes music is all about: making songs that take us beyond our expectations. It's a rush to listen to an album and get excited about what you hear, at the same time genuine anticipation for where the next track may go. The inner blues maniac in me misses the rock from time to time, but the mellow tracks and soothing lyrics make it all ok.
5 out of 5, a must own!
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant,
I knew Jack & Meg would do it again. By largely foresaking the guitar for piano, yet retaining the trademark raw beauty and honesty The White Stripes are revered for, this album ends up sounding like Bob Dylan's NEW MORNING in places. I don't know if Jack White was thinking of that album when creating this one, but the change, while a bit surprising, is wholly satisfying and has produced another fantastic album. I'm 100% pleased.
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