Album Review: Broken Boy Soldiers by The Raconteurs
Very Good, Based on 3 Critics
AllMusic - 70 Based on rating 7/10
It's hard to call the Raconteurs a genuine supergroup since there's only one true rock star in the quartet: the White Stripes' eccentric mastermind Jack White. Sometime between the recording of the Stripes' 2003 breakthrough Elephant and its willfully difficult 2005 follow-up, Get Behind Me Satan, White teamed up with fellow Detroit singer/songwriter Brendan Benson to write some tunes, eventually drafting the rhythm section of Cincinnati garage rockers the Greenhornes as support. Lasting just ten tracks, their debut, Broken Boy Soldiers, doesn't feel hasty, but it doesn't exactly feel carefully considered, either.
Omens augur ill for the Raconteurs' debut. Whichever way you slice it - and the band's members have tried everything, including describing themselves as "a new band of old friends" and, emphatically, "not a rock star's side project" - the Nashville-based quartet are a rock star's side project, which accounts for the magazine covers, the headlining appearances at this summer's festivals and Jim Jarmusch's keenness to direct the video for their debut single. Such are the benefits of having the White Stripes' Jack White sharing lead vocals and songwriting duties with critically acclaimed power-pop auteur Brendan Benson; the rhythm section of Cincinnati garage-rockers the Greenhornes brings up the rear.
Contrary to popular belief, not all of us at Dusted are out staring in the navel of non-popular music. Stewart Voegtlin, for example, likes to take a break from the grimmest of black metal with the sounds of the latest Kidz Bop release. Sam Hunt? Huge KISS fan. Josie Clowney sings Whitney Houston songs exclusively at Dusted’s staff-only karaoke night.