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Concert Reviews:
Jack White gets intimate at Third Man Records fan show

By Gary Graff
ggraff@digitalfirstmedia.com, @GraffonMusic on Twi

Posted: Wednesday, April 18, 2018

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DETROIT -- “You know I’m gonna come here correct,” Jack White told a home town crowd on Wednesday night, April 18. “Before I play the pizza arena, you know I’m gonna play Third Man Records Cass Corridor!”

With the start of his world tour looming the next night at Little Caesars Arena, the Grammy Award-winning White squeezed in some extra warm-up on Tuesday, breaking from two days of rehearsals at Masonic Temple to offer a 40-minute sample of what’s to come. It followed other pre-tour pop-ups at the Third Man store in Nashville and in Los Angeles, Brooklyn, London and Paris, and it showed that White and his new four-piece band are more than ready to take on the big stages.

Wednesday’s show was announced mid-day, with lines instantly materializing up and down Canfield Street. About 400, mostly members of Third Man’s The Vault club, made it inside, where store workers had cleared out many of the fixtures to maximizing space, particularly on the side.

With two keyboardists complementing White’s fiery guitar excursions, the quintet kicked off with a hard-hitting “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground,” a kind of nod to the White Stripes’ roots in the Cass Corridor, particularly at the now-defunct Gold Dollar club. He finished the night with a ferocious coupling of more obscure White Stripes songs, “Little Bird” and “Catch Hell Blues,” and in between sampled his solo career.

White picked three tracks -- “Over and Over and Over,” “Why Walk the Dog” and a funky, Detroit-boosting “Corporation” -- from his chart-topping latest album “Boarding House Reach,” along the title tracks from its predecessors, “Blunderbuss” and “Lazaretto” albums; The latter was given an extended, vampy workout, teetering on the edge at times but never falling apart.

At one juncture White said that, “I’m supposed to only play for half an hour, but I’ll play for a little bit longer if that’s OK.” He hardly needed to ask, of course; The ebullient Third Man crowd would have let him play all night if he wanted.

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