This is the best song from Jack White’s 2014 Lazaretto album, and it was the centerpiece of the show last time I saw him play. It’s mostly acoustic, thus has to stand on its own sans bombastic guitar flourishes. Don’t get me wrong, I like Jack’s bombastics, but it’s good to let a song speak for itself, and Temporary Ground has a lot to say.
Gosh, I do seem to write about Jack White a lot; in particular about his recent recordings and a recent concert. Here’s why: He shares a lot of my ideas about how songs should be written, how rock&roll ought to be played, and how to record it. Also, he’s like thirty years younger than me, so I anticipate him providing part of my minimum required electric-music dosage into my grave.
Back to the song, which is a lilting melodic number; recent performances have featured acoustic violin and pedal-steel guitar, but it’s perfectly possible that the next time Jack goes out on the road, he’ll package it up as a guitar anthem or a-capella chant, he’s like that. The lyrics don’t add up to much but have some phrases that sound good floating over the acoustic backdrop.