Union bank

Jack White at the Atlantic Union Bank Pavilion, Portsmouth, Virginia on April 23, 2022

Jack White

Jack White at the Atlantic Union Bank Pavilion, Portsmouth, VA, April 23, 2022,

May 16, 2022

Photograph by David James Swanson

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With rock artists constituting a minority of major players currently on the road playing bigger venues, Jack White arrived in Portsmouth as a torchbearer for rock & roll. He was on the cusp of great success with the top-flight release of his fourth solo album, fear of dawn, and her recent surprise wedding on stage. And when the curtains were lifted on White tearing up ‘Taking Me Back’, the Portsmouth crowd got up and started with him.

With his electric blue hair, White led a band that was more than capable of delivering, with drums, keyboards and a bassist who switched between electric bass and standing bass. In addition to the side stage screens that gave a basic close-up of the action, the atmospheric stage backdrop provided changing images, all projected into the Dawn the album’s shade of blue, from a drifting cosmos to an enormous moon with White’s performing face at its center.

The public was entitled to almost half of fear of dawn, with a maniacal “What’s the Trick?” serving as a highlight. Along with other solo tracks, plus a blast of Little Willie John’s “I’m Shakin'”, there was a healthy sample of White Stripes material, and WS favorites like “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground” and an exuberant “Hotel Yorba”. were received as classic rock anthems. As for White’s other projects, the encore further pumped up the crowd with The Raconteurs’ “Steady, As She Goes” and The Dead Weather’s “I Cut Like a Buffalo” before White and his band caused a stir with the White Stripes classic. “Army of seven countries.”

Opening band Starcrawler took the stage to start the night off with blazing ’70s style guitars and didn’t let go. Singer Arrow de Wilde, a restless, twirling cross between young female versions of Iggy Pop and Vince Neil, unleashed a howl that may well have stunned fish and fishermen in the nearby harbour. The Los Angeles quintet ripped through a series of loud tracks that included a cover of Ramones’ “Pet Sematary” and even pedal steel guitar, displaying an assurance that might have given other headliners pause for add Starcrawler to their bill. Jack White apparently had no such worries.

The show’s policy was that all cellphones were to be locked in door-issued pouches, ensuring that White would only watch rows of fans and not a sea of ​​raised cellphones filming favorite songs in their faces. neighbors. If a few were disappointed that they didn’t hold their phones aloft for “Seven Nation Army,” having a distinct memory of his performance with clear vision was a worthy reward for their sobriety.

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