Sea of Cowards

Aided and abetted by sultry Alison Mosshart, Jack White blackens garage blues into a thick, gooey tar on the supergroup's second album, Sea of Cowards. The wooly, bottom-heavy, 70s-funk thump oozes menace like Jimmy Page coming down from heroin or Deep Purple heard through a hit of brown acid.

Opener Blue Blood Blues, one of the few songs sung by White, hits hard with gut-punch rhythms and dazed-fuzz bass courtesy of Raconteur Jack Lawrence. The Difference Between Us twists a hypnotic keyboard groove around a propulsive charge, and Gasoline chicken-scratches its way to a hellcat chorus and a titanic organ riff. Throughout, Mosshar'ts wailing blues vocals practically make the walls sweat with their humid intensity. You wouldn't be surprised to hear Sea of Cowards coming out of an airbrushed van, but it would be the kind youd stay far away from unless you were prepared to break some laws.

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