Saturday, December 10, 2005

The White Stripes Walkin With a Ghost EP (V2, 2005)

Tegan and Sara's quirky and catchy 'Walkin' With A Ghost' has been a staple on Little Steven's Underground Garage on Sirius radio, and it looks like it's caught the ear of The White Stripes as well, as they're using it as the title track of their new EP and tacking on some live songs from their recent tour to round it out. 'Walkin' With A Ghost' does get the Stripes treatment of heavier guitars and a straight ahead drum beat, but other than that, it retains the kooky and spooky feel of the original. The live tracks includes some interesting music as well, with the hard garage rock of 'The Denial Twist' juxtaposed against the milder feel of 'As Ugly As I Seem.' This is an interesting snapshot of the band after a long summer and fall of touring.

The Greenhornes Sewed Soles (V2, 2005)

Another band with a connection to The White Stripes is The Greenhornes, from Cincinnati, whose rough and ready R&B and garage rock hybrid has earned the opening slot on the Stripes recent tour and a major label contract with V2. This is a compilation album from their first few records and EP's. Sounding all the world like an updated version of Van Morrison's Them, the band adds some great Farfisa organ to the classic lineup of guitar, bass and drums. Pile driving blues rockers are often the order of the day, like the organ fueled 'I Can't Stand It' and 'Shame and Misery' which backs its lovelorn tale of woe with slashing guitars and raw drumming. The band is far from a one trick pony however, their collaboration with British chanteuse Holly Golightly that was featured prominently in the Jim Jarmush film Broken Flowers is included here, with the band cutting a mod groove, and the ballad 'Stay Away Girl' is like something from a long lost Nuggets collection of the future. Fans of rocking R&B will really enjoy this.

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