Icky Thump - The White Stripes

Generally favorable reviews - based on 39 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 39
  2. Negative: 1 out of 39
  1. Despite all the distortion and teeth-shivering riffs, Icky Thump rivals White Blood Cells in accessibility. [22 Jun 2007, p.68]
  2. Playing at world, at heavy, at soul, [Jack White] arts it up plenty and protests a little.
  3. If nothing else, this record is fun.
  4. 'Icky Thump' is brilliant, there's no way around that.
  5. "Icky Thump" is really a very odd record indeed, but then, oddness of a particularly bravura nature comes naturally to them.
  6. As White Stripes albums go, 'Icky Thump' is a goodie, and there's no resting on of laurels either.
  7. 90
    It's the sound of a band not stretching out so much as digging in: burrowing deeper into loamy soil they know well. [Jul 2007, p.109]
  8. Such arty, at times enervating, digressions highlight Icky Thump’s curious weight; whereas Elephant’s dinosaur-rock stomp got cut with fragile acoustic turns, there is little reprieve here.
  9. It's eccentric, it's exhilarating, it is, in parts, absolutely insane. Yet it's never less than absolutely compelling, which is what makes The White Stripes one of the greatest bands of modern times.
  10. With Icky Thump they have proven, yet again, that being musically sound in both songwriting and craftsmanship, while knowing how to exercise instrumentation is key in making a solid album in today’s day and age.
  11. At 48 minutes, Icky Thump has enough genre-hopping, rip-roaring tunes to get even the 70s rock purist nodding his head again.
  12. The highest highs of Icky can't quite reach the altitude of the band's breakthrough singles, but some of that inadequacy is tempered by the group's more robust sound.
  13. 80
    A compellingly weird experience. [Jul 2007, p.92]
  14. 80
    Icky Thump is a fearless album, braving a bold bunch of weird rock transformations: slick studio radio glam, southern jukebox boogie, Scottish Highlander mandolin jaunts (!!), stuttering mariachi machismo, comedic skits, etc.
  15. With its fuller sound and relaxed flights of fancy, Icky Thump is a mature, but far from stodgy, album -- and, as is usually the case, it's just great fun to hear the band play.
  16. Icky Thump positively swarms out of the speakers.
  17. If you’re fond of the curious, Icky Thump is the choice White Stripes album.
  18. This is a heavyweight album in every sense of the word.
  19. The Stripes have never had so much fun. [23 Jun 2007]
  20. They've put out six strong albums, consecutively. And without a pause, they've expanded their range without loosing sight of their limits.
  21. Everywhere on Icky giant riffs leap and shout, with Flamenco horns and those eerie bagpipes and rhythmic shifts and Jack's impatient vocal kinetics, marking new territories even as the White Stripes again populate them with vintage ideas.
  22. They strike a forceful balance between elemental and ornate.
  23. The new album manages to hone the at-points-aimless progressive aspirations of Get Behind Me Satan into sharp, clear-cut musical growth.
  24. I suspect those left cold by Satan will find Icky Thump a welcome reheating.
  25. Like the White Album, Exile on Mainstreet, or Wowee Zowee, this album's risky lack of sonic cohesion becomes the very through line that binds the work as a whole. Unlike those albums, however, not all of the experiments here are uniformly excellent or thrilling, nor do they all live up to the promise of the wonderful, muted Satan.
  26. The White Stripes, at the same moment they claim to have finally overcome your entanglements, have provided you the ammunition of a hit-or-miss album.
  27. There is enough vitality in both composition and instrumentality to suggest that continued praise is warranted for this decade-long duo. [Summer 2007, p.86]
  28. This is by far The White Stripes’ most peculiar record.
  29. Like his sometime heroes Led Zeppelin, Jack White builds monuments. They're suitable for awestruck visits. But they're no place to settle down.
  30. Though far from The White Stripes' best work, Icky Thump is still plenty good, brash, and noisy in the way great rock records are supposed to be.
  31. Icky Thump, despite the presence of some simply insane over-indulgence, is a great album.
  32. Its rock is louder, its campiness richer.
  33. Icky Thump is freighted with moments of frazzled virtuosity yet may prove excessively outre for most palettes.
  34. The title track erupts like a "Seven Nation Army...." The rest is a mixed bag.
  35. 60
    A noisy, cranky piece of work. [Jul 2007, p.91]
  36. Icky Thump is an anti-climatic, vaguely appealing record that unfortunately feels like a retreat from the ballsy piano-based pop eccentricity of Get Behind Me Satan. And that's a shame because going back to basics — at least in this case — feels like surrender.
  37. Most of Icky Thump's songs sound half-assed, with keyboard parts thrown in ad hoc, but at least they had the good sense to trim the piano bar balladry.
  38. The affecting style that made them the most imaginative revivalists of their generation has been replaced by half-assed and half-hearted prog rock.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 209 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 6 out of 120
  1. Jun 28, 2012
    Solid final album from the blues rock duo. It's not got any songs that are complete magic, which is not something you would say about the 3 records previous to this, and that is where it loses out. It's a consistent record, mostly full of bluesy rock, typical ofwhat we've come to expect from Jack and Meg White. Opener and title track Icky Thump is by far the most interesting thing on it - and by White Stripes standards could be classed as experimental. After that they play it safe for the most part. Bone Broke is the other standout track for me. Not the worst record you'll hear but Jack White has put his name to far superior records. Full Review »
  2. Nov 2, 2011
    Now, this is my favourite album by The White Stripes. It has the harshness of Elephant but is also lovely in its oddness. The cover image showing Jack and Meg as Pearly King and Queen and the title (the correct spelling is â Full Review »
  3. j30
    Sep 22, 2011
    This might be my least favorite White Stripes album. You get the feeling they're losing their importance in rock music. There some good songs here and there, but nothing compares to their earlier work. Full Review »