Have you ever heard of a sports broadcaster being called a “homer”? It means that they cheer for the home team as they call the game. They are not indifferent; they are fans as well as reporters. When it comes to Jack White, I am a homer and I will freely admit that.
Hell, the slipmat on my turntable is a White Stripes slipmat.
Who is John Peel? He is a legendary DJ (presenter) for the BBC. The White Stripes were in studio with him twice in 2001 in support of White Blood Cells. That is the album that made The White Stripes a worldwide commercial success. But, these sessions were recorded before all of that fame.
What you hear on The White Stripes: The Complete John Peel Sessions is a band on the cusp of being huge. This record has the energy of a band operating as a well-oiled machine and cranking out hit after hit, but it is performed with just a few people in the room. It is filled with smatterings of applause between each song. Those lucky few must have been blown away.
As a fan of the band, what I love about The White Stripes: The Complete John Peel Sessions is this is a recording of live renditions of early era White Stripes songs that have been perfected by the band, being played with their well-known vigor, in an environment ideal for recording live music. Sometimes other live recordings from The White Stripes have too much crowd noise or Jack seems to be screaming more than normal, but these recordings are almost perfect. I warned you; I’m a homer.
This was a limited release on Record Store Day this year, so I can not speak to the availability of this album. However, if you are a fan of The White Stripes, you need this record.
My favorite track: Let’s Build a Home/Goin’ Back to Memphis