Jack White

Fear Of The Dawn

Third Man • 2022

»Fear of the Dawn« lives up to an eleven-year-old promise: it was at this time that the White Stripes finally disbanded and the world awaited new masterpieces from Jack White. The 46-year-old was and is considered one of the best guitarists on the planet. But the White Stripes were followed by half-baked solo albums, on which Jack White appeared to lean more in the direction of a band structure just once too often. He has announced two new albums for this year, starting with »Fear of the Dawn«, the record with a harder edge. And sure enough, the pre-release single, »Taking Me Back,« mowed down just about anything and everyone who still doubted Jack White’s guitar skills. White varies his playing style throughout the album, mainly through various effects and pedals. What at first seems like a gimmick is absorbed better by the songs every time you play the album. This makes »Fear of the Dawn« exhausting, sweaty, demanding, nervous, great. The title track feels like the logical progression of White’s sound. And no longer is he hiding behind arrangements and other instruments either. »Fear of the Dawn« is a guitar album through and through. The instrument constantly screeches, saws, explodes and wails. Thematically, White’s lyrics are a bit muddled, about fears for the future, the image of which is a dread of the sun rising, an anxiety disorder that he read about in a magazine. However, he only uses this as a theme and not a concept. This album is far too playful for that. Such as when Detroit-born Jack White mixes Mediterranean beats with hip-hop in »Hi De Ho« together with Q-Tip and the thing still churns out an insane amount of groove. »Fear of the Dawn« is the solo masterpiece that finally does justice to White’s guitar playing. A monstrous sound that can devour time.