White Denim – Stiff

Twenty seconds into the album, I was sold. Girls singing two lines in a slightly pitchy, playground style for eight seconds yields immediately to a Zeppelin-style jam that lets you know White Denim knows their way around classic rock chops like their own back yard. “Had 2 Know (Personal)” sounds like what would have happened if Zeppelin had been fronted by Paul Rodgers instead of Plant. “Ha Ha Ha Ha (Yeah)” feels like a hybrid of Cream and Sly and the Family Stone. “Holda You (I’m Psycho) goes back to the Bad Company sound, but at double speed, and with a great change-up at 1:36. The vocals on “There’s a Brain in My Head” sound more Mickey Dolenz than Paul Rodgers, but there’ll be no mistaking the band for the Monkees. “Take it Easy (Ever After Lasting Love)” is slower and harkens to Al Green.

“(I’m the One) Big Big Fun”, frankly, doesn’t seem to fit with the rest of the album. There’s nothing wrong with the performance, but the genre of the song and recording style stand out in a less than spectacular way. “Real Deal Momma” and “Mirrored in Reverse” pick things back up in the style of the first few songs. “Thank You” closes out the album with sounding like a jazz fusion band covering a Flaming Lips tune. It’s a good song, but feels slightly different from the rest of the album, although not as much as “(I’m the One) Big Big Fun”.

White Denim are from Austin Texas and have released seven albums since 2006.

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