Sunday, 6 January 2013

Jack White & The Kills at Alexandra Palace

Here comes my review of a much anticipated gig put on by Jack White and his all-female band, with special guests The Kills on Saturday 3rd November 2012.
Jack White & his all-female band

This gig was one of the highlights of my own live music experiences, so I am loath to start off on a negative. 

Brit/USA duo The Kills kept fans waiting for an uncool 1 hour, during which roadies casually distributed fluffy white towels around the stage in expectation of a sweaty performance.  

When they did appear they came flanked by leather-clad handkerchief-masked drummers, not something I expected to see but it meant the pair didn't look lonely on stage, on top of adding to their rough and powerful dark rock sound and aesthetically grungy appeal. 

Vocalist Alison Mosshart had the energy of a small sun, fired up and bounding around on stage, stealing the spotlight with her seductive voice. 

The majority of the set list came from their most recent studio album “Blood Pressures”, appropriately so as Mosshart is quoted to have said that she feels her music with guitarist Jamie Hince is always evolving. 
Jamie Hince & Alison Mosshart of The Kills
The Kills may have been in a supporting role but the duo delivered a performance on par with any headline act. Just as well, they recently celebrated 10 years together although you might not know it from their website, which doesn’t give much away – I resorted to Wikipedia for their biography. It wasn’t clear how many Kills fans were in the crowd, who bopped around a bit but were reserved. 

But the audience really came alive for the much anticipated main event that was Jack White. Accompanied by his stylish all-female band, Jack White evoked a contagious excitement from his fans who weren’t shy to sing along. 

With his solo album Blunderbuss he is more soothing than he’s ever sounded before, but don’t let that put you off! White seamlessly integrated bluegrass rock into his unique sound that fans would know anywhere. 
Member of the male band (different night)
Jack White

He didn’t rely on his solo album to drive the concert, rather he drew on many much loved tunes from across his musical career (remember “Steady As She Goes” from The Raconteurs and who could forget “Seven Nation Army” from The White Stripes). 

Jack White is truly a one-of-a-kind musician and is finally following his own lead with great success. 

However truth be told I am more in love with The Kills than before for seeing them perform live, which in my view is the truest sign of talented musicianship.

And man, they did need those towels in the end!

Can anyone tell me what Jack White/The Kills have been like as performers before?
If you were there, what did you think of the show? 
The audience in Alexandra Palace
Photos of Jack White from
and of The Kills from

Read the rest of The Stag Issue 52

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