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**** (Third Man)

You know the other two guys in the Raconteurs? The ones you can't name? They're in a Cincinnati band called the Greenhornes. And along with another dude they make the type of wide-eyed, retro-leaning garage rock that Jack White grew out of ever since he became a rock god a few years ago. Their fourth album, ********, is their best, an occasionally dippy and often trippy excursion to the nether regions of '60s psych rock with a few stops along the way for some pop excavation. Frontman Craig Fox slips into the dozen songs with unassuming stealth. You never know whether he's paying direct tribute to his idols or if this is just the way he sounds. Traces of the Who, Kinks, and other guitar-rock legends run through "Saying Goodbye," "Better Off Without It," and "Song 13," so there's not a whole lot that's original about ********. But it's more fun than the last Raconteurs album.

Michael Gallucci


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