Review Summary: Consolers Of The Lonely is a more thrash styled version of Broken Boy Soldiers. It also seems to have a bigger contribution by Jack White. It's worth a listen...
The first thing I have to say is that The Raconteurs' first album, Broken Boy Soldiers is great; although, I think this one surpasses it.
Consolers Of The Lonely really delivers proof of the existence of talent The Raconteurs possess. From the great bass playing of Jack Lawrence, to the incredible, in sync vocals of Jack White and Brendan Benson. The transition between Jack and Brendan is extraordinary. You hear it clearly, but it doesn’t kill the mood; as many bands tend to do when attempting a change-up. The track, Solute Your Solution is the main song that opened my ears to this.
One thing that people expect of this band is that Jack White may have to hold back on some unique guitar solos in order for The Raconteurs to have a good, well-put together album. In fact, that’s what he seemed to do in Broken Boy Soldiers. Quite a few of The White Stripes fans were not happy with this. The songs were more about rhythm and consistency, rather than daring solos and challenging vocals. It was a fairly, conservative album. Although, the CD turned out to be a great collaboration of catchy lyrics and good beats, in my opinion, it doesn’t reach the level Consolers Of The Lonely seems to reach.
Fans of The White Stripes were upset to see that White wasn’t the lead lyric writer. I guess they were just hoping to see a duplicate of The White Stripes, with just a different name, and with more people. Benson shows his lyric writing skills well in Broken Boy Soldiers, but exceeds expectations in Consolers Of The Lonely. In addition, this album has a whole song that seems to be almost a solo by White (just light playing in the background by the rest of the members). The track is Carolina Drama. It’s a tremendous song, that tells a story, while maintaining a great melody. The most amazing thing about this song is that it doesn’t have a chorus, but it is still amazingly catchy! There are not many songs like that. White definitely has enough skill to be talked about down the road. Now, understand that White didn’t create the song completely by himself. He had a large amount of help from Benson. In this album, Brendan Benson definitely proves his worthiness to be one of the leaders of this band.
The band has enough skill to afford to let White go nuts, while not having to worry if Brendan can keep up with his guitar. The fact is; Brendan has some extraordinary skills of his own on guitar (as well as keyboard). A prime example of his guitar playing talent is the track, Consoler Of The Lonely. The Raconteurs play extremely well together. They also aren’t afraid to hold back on some tracks, just to make the song more meaningful. These guys are good, and I think they'll be big.
Now, I have to say that this is a guitar heavy band, not drum heavy. The drummer, Patrick Keeler, does show some talent, but he's like a Meg White type (but with a little more thrash). He has excellent rhythm, and is terrific for this band, but I don't see him breaking the top 20 drummers list anytime soon. That’s all I’m sayin’.
Let me just finish off by stating that this album was definitely worth the money I paid. I suggest you go out and buy this album ASAP. You won't regret it. And if you don't trust me, then go to their MySpace page and check 'em out. Hey, it's for free..
Thanks for reading.
Consoler Of The Lonely
Salute Your Solution
The Switch And The Spur
Five On The Five
These Stones Will Shout