Jack White Tears Up Brooklyn’s Warsaw On ‘Boarding House Reach’ Release Day Show (SHOW REVIEW)

To celebrate his experimental new album Boarding House Reach Jack White scheduled three club shows, the second of which was the actual release date, Friday night March 23rd at Warsaw in Brooklyn, NY. Having not toured since 2015 White was in glorious triumphant form, reinvigorated he prowled the stage with palpable energy, engaging the crowd for singalongs while leading his thunderous band.

Opening with soaring “Over and Over and Over” the audience was riveted from the drop as the explosive players, drummer Carla Azar bassist Dominic Davis and keyboardists Neal Evans and Quincy McCrary instantly locked in with White who presented a mile wide smile all show.   

The small capacity Warsaw was a perfect location for Jack as he took swigs of champagne and mentioned his Polish heritage multiple times including walking to church with his grandmother and letting the crowd know that “Upstairs they’re giving polka lessons, downstairs they’re serving pierogies. Do you know how much this place speaks to me?”.

The tiny venue also allowed the group to get incredibly loud, toying with feedback, synthesizers and massive riffs. White mixed up his arsenal of pedals, effects and guitars to include a new Music Man St. Vincent Signature Electric as “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground” and “Canon” grounded the band in the rough raw blues. On this night the brand new tracks were the ones Jack and company clearly relished digging into as “Corporation”, Connected By Love” and “Respect Commander” were all exploratory and stunning.  

Over the last few years White has been amping up the groove and the low end on this night of Azar and Davis were anchored deep, allowing the riffs and synths to swirl into the heavens. “Get In the Mind Shaft” and “Ice Station Zebra” both showcased the power of the new band, but White is such a rockstar he takes over in a flash like on “Blunderbuss” which devolved into a spoken word mesmerizing finish or the set closing duo of “We’re Going To Be Friends” and “Carolina Drama”.

Those softer moments stood out because of the sonic assault that catapulted the set ever forward. The crushing “I’m Slowly Turning Into You” the hip hop infused “Black Bat Licorice” and the swelling theatrical glory of “Would You Fight For My Love?” were all transcendent before White riffed on the “Blue Moon of Kentucky” around a “Cannon” reprise.

The six string pyrotechnics of “Ball and a Biscuit” ended a glorious night of sound as White and company blazed through a career retrospective while shining the electric blue spotlight extra bright on his newest release; a top-notch show from one of the best doing it today.         

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