2022 is quickly shaping up to be quite the busy year for Jack White. He’s done a hell of a lot already, having released a full-length LP Fear of the Dawn back in April. The same day that the album was released, White played the National Anthem at a Detroit Tigers game and got married to his girlfriend Olivia Jean in his hometown.
And White isn’t even done: he’s currently out on tour and is prepping an entire second studio album, Entering Heaven Alive, that is set to come out just three months after Fear of the Dawn. The two records are meant to be connected, with Entering Heaven Alive representing the softer and folkier sounds of White’s style as opposed to the hard rock thump of Fear of the Dawn.
Today, we’re getting our first official preview of Entering Heaven Alive with the brand new single ‘If I Die Tomorrow’. Complete with county fiddle and fatalistic lyrics, the new track sounds like a great folkie outtake that would be played by The Avett Brothers. White’s shown this side to him before, including on solo albums like Blunderbuss and in his brief appearance in the film Cold Mountain, but Entering Heaven Alive will likely represent a full-fledged embrace of his rootsier side.
Since this is still Jack White, there’s a little bit of electric feedback that buzzes in towards the end of the track. But with an arrangement that leans heavily on the acoustic instrumentation that White has assembled around him, ‘If I Die Tomorrow’ is a clear break from his legendary electric guitar theatrics.
The most stirring element remains White’s voice, which stays in a low register and almost murmurs out the dark ode to carrying on after death. After a whole solo career of wild turns, sometimes it’s just nice to hear White harmonise with himself so perfectly. White is so restless as an artist that progression is always at the forefront of his mind, but Entering Heaven Alive should prove to be a welcomed stripped-back version of his signature sound.
Check out the video for ‘If I Die Tomorrow’ down below. Entering Heaven Alive is set for a July 22nd release.