Sad news broke yesterday as two power-houses in their respective fields threw in the towel: the mighty White Stripes and Sir King Gary Neville. Will the world ever be the same again? I think not.
White Stripes pioneered the garage-rock revival of the early Noughties, rejecting elaborate production as well as outlandish instrumentation and effects for a basic electric guitar and drum set-up aiming to make the recordings as raw as possible. Allowing for an American indie scene in which bands such as The Strokes and Yeah Yeah Yeahs could thankfully flourish. Gary Neville was a good right-back.
All their albums received huge critical acclaim, with White Blood Cells (2001) being named album of the decade by Uncut Magazine and The A.V Club. Follow-up Elephant, the band’s mainstream breakthrough album, was a piece of pop culture history, winning a Grammy for Best Alternative Album. You can still see car adverts ripping off the iconic ‘Seven Nation Army’ video to this day, and British supermodel Kate Moss featured as a pole-dancer in the video for ‘I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself’. Gary Neville has won eight Premier League titles, three FA Cups, two Football League Cups, three Community Shields and one UEFA Champions League.
The White Stripes made a name for themselves as being unfathomably good live. Sure, Meg had her critics (leading Jack White to defend her honour: “Her femininity and extreme minimalism are too much to take for some metalheads and reverse-contrarian hipsters,”) but together they caused an incomprehensible racket. Worthy headliners of Glastonbury in 2005, the White Stripes owed much to Jack’s virtuoso guitar playing style and charisma. Gary Neville’s dad is called Neville Neville.
As we grow older and look back at the history books of popular music, The White Stripes will be lauded as pop culture icons. Gary Neville hates scousers, but loves the rat-tache.