Live Review: Jack White, Lanie Lane

31 July 2012 | 10:03 am | Ross Clelland

More Jack White More Jack White

To paraphrase that famous quote: I have seen the past, present and future of rock and roll – but in this live study of the history of popular and outsider music, Jack White adds soul, blues, country and even some funk to the lesson. And does it with such apparently easy grace, joy and energy.

Our girl Lanie Lane can mess with eras and styles as well. The smile went from ear to ear. She was still the girl playing dress-ups, but then channels Peggy Lee torching, Wanda Jackson countrybilly or even The Black Keys' Gold On The Ceiling, and again proved she's an original. Both sides of her Jack White-produced single were delivered and most everyone – on and offstage – was happy.

The coin came down for Los Buzzardos tonight, so we got Jack White's man band, rather than the equally stylish Peacocks all-woman unit offered to Melbourne the night before. Bunched around the middle of the stage – drumkit, rightly, at stage front – they each feed off the focus-point of the man in the powder-blue frock-coat.

With no setlist – the live equivalent of working without a net – White directed them with just a nod or yelled title. And the band just went with him. For, while never forgetting the show was centred around the sprawling Blunderbuss album – Missing Pieces and Freedom At 21 early touchstones – there were broadbrush tangents, but somehow it still fitted together.

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

Drummer Daru Jones is the engine. He flailed, stood, flourished, went like clockwork as necessary. But handled it when made to pull back as well, like when The White Stripes' earliest moment, Hotel Yorba, came bluegrass via Cory Younts' mandolin and Fats Kaplin's fiddle. From there, it's a short amble back to the Hank Williams' country of You Know I Know.

It's then a continuous rush. The new record's Hypocritical Kiss the roar of Led Zep's 707 on the taxiway, while On And On And On was almost '70s West Coast, albeit loudly. The Raconteurs' Steady As She Goes is audience call-and-response singalong. The Dead Weathers' Cut Like A Buffalo is pure evil genius as White's guitar scythes.

Encores? Of course. Sixteen Saltines approaches hysteria. And the final 'greatest hits': the insistence of Hardest Button To Button and the obligatory but still grand Seven Nation Army. Nothing can follow that. They line up, bow, His Whiteness thanks and blesses us. And only then do you take a breath.