released Mar 16th, 2010

from the album - The Union Forever

YouTube - The White Stripes - The Union Forever, Canon, Pick A Bale Of Cotton. Glastonbury 2002. 14/16

from all music

The White Stripes formed on Bastille Day in 1997, aiming to create simple, vigorous rock & roll with little more than Meg White's percussion and Jack White's guitar-and-vocal attack. Meg's drumming was deliberate and straightforward, while Jack's formidable guitar skills paid homage to garage rock, blues, and punk. A former drummer for the Detroit-based country outfit Goober & the Peas, he also displayed an affinity for American folk music, and the White Stripes took strength in the varied interests of its two members. Moreover, the group bolstered its sound with a controversial backstory (although the bandmates claimed to be siblings, they were actually a married couple until 2000) and a unique color scheme, which saw their clothing and cover art adhering to a red-and-white peppermint candy motif.

Although the band emerged from Detroit's burgeoning rock scene, the White Stripes quickly gained a national following after touring alongside Pavement and Sleater-Kinney. Such performances helped support the duo's self-titled debut album, released in 1999 and dedicated to blues icon Son House. A sophomore effort followed closely behind, as the self-recorded De Stijl appeared in June 2000. However, it was the band's third release -- 2001's White Blood Cells -- that established the White Stripes as forerunners of the garage rock revival. Recorded in Memphis by renowned producer Doug Easley, White Blood Cells was a critical smash, launching the band into the same circle as the Strokes and the Hives. The White Stripes appeared on Late Night with David Lettterman and the MTV Movie Awards program; meanwhile, their music was profiled in such publications as Time, The New Yorker, and Entertainment Weekly.

Faced with a swell in popularity, the musicians made the tough decision to jump to a major label. White Blood Cells was accordingly reissued by V2 Records in January 2002, and the previous two records followed suit in June. The White Stripes' profile continued to build as the music video for "Fell in Love with a Girl" -- a clever piece of Lego-animation directed by Michel Gondry -- was nominated for four MTV Video Awards, including Breakthrough Video, Best Special Effects in a Video, and Best Video of the Year, the latter of which pitted the band against the likes of Eminem and *NSYNC. While many garage rock revivalists struggled to maintain popularity as the decade progressed, the White Stripes proved to be an enduring presence, with 2003's Elephant receiving unanimous critical acclaim (and platinum sales in several countries) upon its release.

The White Stripes returned in 2005 with Get Behind Me Satan, a dizzyingly diverse album that spanned disco-metal and light, marimba-driven pop. In keeping with the band's feverish pace, the album had been written and recorded in two weeks that spring. The Stripes supported its release with a tour, during which they covered Tegan and Sara's "Walking with a Ghost" and released the song as a single at the end of 2005. That same year, Jack White and his new wife, model/singer Karen Elson, moved to Nashville, TN. White also formed the Raconteurs with Brendan Benson and the Greenhornes' Jack Lawrence and Patrick Keeler, and spent much of 2006 touring in support of the group's debut album, Broken Boy Soldiers.

Jack White continued to juggle his responsibilities as he performed with several bands, produced albums for other artists, and made forays into cinema. The White Stripes remained a vital commercial and critical presence, however, and the Grammy-winning Icky Thump appeared in 2007. Recorded in three weeks at Nashville's Blackbird Studio, the album included the first-ever Stripes songs with bagpipes and mariachi horns. After issuing another album with the Raconteurs, Jack White added yet another band to his plate as he joined the Dead Weather, a female-fronted group that released its debut album in 2009. That same year, he also appeared in the guitar-themed movie It Might Get Loud, and produced an album for Elson. That year also saw the theatrical release of Under Great White Northern Lights, the White Stripes' first concert film. Directed by Emmett Malloy

album review

Given the White Stripes’ reputation for powerful concerts, it’s a little surprising that they waited until more than a decade into their career to release a live album. However, Under Great White Northern Lights was worth the wait: While nothing can really replace seeing the band live, this set captures most of their riveting on-stage presence. The album was recorded during the Stripes’ 2007 Canadian tour, which was such a special experience for them that they chronicled it with a DVD as well. The band was touring in support of that year’s Icky Thump, and the Scottish and Celtic motifs that are woven throughout that album pop up here, too, from the bagpipes intro to a brisk version of “Little Ghost” that sounds almost like a reel. Like most White Stripes concerts, Under Great White Northern Lights features an even-handed mix of early songs and newer ones — Jack and Meg White go way back for incendiary takes on “Let’s Shake Hands” and “When I Hear My Name,” which sound right at home next to the lunging “Icky Thump” and “I’m Slowly Turning into You.” The album opens with four furious rockers that show just how primal the duo is live — on “Black Math” and a breathless “Blue Orchid” they sound like they can barely keep up with the energy flowing through them — but many of Under Great White Northern Lights’ brightest moments happen when they slow down. Jack and Meg settle into a groove on “300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues” that makes the song fresher than it was on Icky Thump, while a particularly stunning version of “The Union Forever,” with extra-desperate vocals from Jack surrounded by a swelling, horror-movie organ, just might be the album’s standout. The Stripes also include plenty of favorites, including “Jolene,” a bluesy “Fell in Love with a Girl,” a singalong “I Just Don’t Know What to Do With Myself,” and a bruising “Seven Nation Army” as the finale, all of which capture the kind of show the band puts on for their fans. Since a big part of the Stripes’ live show also rests on their visuals, the Under Great White Northern Lights DVD gives the complete experience, but this album is satisfying enough to make it a must for most fans.

Track Listing

1."Let's Shake Hands"
2."Black Math"
3."Little Ghost"
4."Blue Orchid"
5."The Union Forever"
6."Ball and Biscuit"
7."Icky Thump"
8."I'm Slowly Turning Into You"
9."Jolene" (Dolly Parton)
10."300 MPH Torrential Outpour Blues"
11."We Are Going to Be Friends"
12."I Just Don't Know What to Do With Myself" (Burt Bacharach, Hal David)
13."Prickly Thorn, But Sweetly Worn"
14."Fell in Love with a Girl"
15."When I Hear My Name"
16."Seven Nation Army"