Jack White gives himself new bands at the rate the general public give themselves online personas. And Dead Weather's second record, Sea Of Cowards, targets anonymous online folks. Considering the hate-on rained on Dead Weather's sucky jam-session-like premiere, Horehound, you can see why they felt stung enough to fight back.
The good news is that much of that response is channelled into a much tighter effort here. White takes more vocal duties from Kills singer Alison Mosshart, who still sings expertly on the nearest thing to an electro-rock ballad on the album, The Difference Between Us, which follows her funky winning track Hustle And Cuss.
The rest of the record makes heavy, calculated and controlled punches from its blues base. Gasoline's solos sound like they could be straight out of a White Stripes catalogue, as does album opener Blue Blood Blues. If Stripes fans want to give Dead Weather another chance, this one deserves space in the record collection.
Top track: Gasoline
The Dead Weather play Sound Academy July 15.