In the Spring of 2002 I came upon the strangest music video. It seemed to be stop motion lego to a fast two minute song. The video and music was unlike anything I had heard or seen. The video was for The White Stripes Fell in Love With a Girl and at the time I recalled most of my class hated the band. I however found the song (and it’s follow single Dead Leaves and Dirty Ground) to be catchy and new. Throughout the rest of the of 2002 a few more garage rock inspired ‘The’ bands came out including The Hives, The Strokes and The Vines but White Stripes was definitely the most unique of them all.
My interest in the band however remained quite minor until the Fall of 2002 at our high school coffee house. Throughout the night we had an open mic that anyone could come up and perform during. A friend of mine Rob Micun went up and covered the song Hotel Yorba and it was the highlight of the night for me. When he told me it was a song by White Stripes I went out that weekend and picked up the album and quickly fell in love with the diverse sounds of each track.
White Blood Cells takes all the elements of classic rock, garage rock and punk rock and mixes them into one crazy sound. The fact that a sound this intense comes from two people was absolutely unreal. You have the country-folk styling of Hotel Yorba followed by a punky Fell in Love with a Girl. You have a track like Little Room that’s just Jack White screaming over a pounding bass drum beat and then you have a song like Union Forever where Jack just starts reciting a song from Citizen Kane.
While my interest for bands like The Strokes and The Vines tends to rise and fall with each album and song I’ve always been impressed by the White Stripes be in their newer songs like Denial Twist or revisiting their older songs like Hello Operator.
Hotel Yorba still remains my favorite song in the bands history but there will always be a place in my heart for their cute lullaby-ish single We Are Gonna Be Friends. Listening to Jack’s simple guitar riff and cute lyrics about elementary school friendships will always touch a nostalgic part in my heart.
People always make references to albums that make you want to form a band. The White Stripes makes you realize you don’t even need a full band to form a band.
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