Get Behind Me Satan is the fifth studio album by American alternative rock band The White Stripes, released on June 7, 2005, on V2 Records. Though still basic in production style, the album marked a distinct change from its guitar-heavy 2003 predecessor, Elephant. With its reliance on piano-driven melodies and experimentation with marimba on "The Nurse" and "Forever For Her (Is Over For Me)", Get Behind Me Satan plays down the punk, garage rock and blues influences that dominated earlier White Stripes albums. Frontman Jack White plays with different technique than in the past, trading in hiselectric guitar for piano, mandolin, and acoustic guitar on all but a handful of tracks, as his usual riff-conscious lead guitarstyle is overtaken by a predominantly rhythmic approach. Rolling Stone ranked it the third best album of the year and it received the Grammy for Best Alternative Music Album in 2006. As of February 2007, Get Behind Me Satan had sold 850,000 units in the United States.
Jack White recorded the album at his own Third Man Studios in Detroit, Michigan, and mixed it at Ardent Studios inMemphis, Tennessee. This represented a change from their previous album because The White Stripes did not use a professional studio for production work.
Jack White has explained that the title, Get Behind Me Satan, refers to a well-known line from the story of the Temptation of Jesus which is later repeated against the disciple Simon Peter, in Matthew 16:23 of the New Testament. In the King James Version, the quotation is slightly different: "Get thee behind me, Satan". Jack White has also stated in an interview on the radio show Fresh Air that "truth is the number one theme throughout the album Get Behind Me Satan."
Get Behind Me Satan is the only album by The White Stripes to not be commercially released in a vinyl format. The reason behind it was because The White Stripes had intended to re-record Get Behind Me Satan entirely live in a New Zealand studio and wanted that to be the official vinyl version. However, the studio that they were planning to record it in no longer had the recording equipment to make it possible. As a result, there was never a commercially released vinyl of the album. Yet, there are only a few copies of the album on vinyl LP that were given exclusively to music journalists for review, which have since become coveted collector's items. They were released by both XL Recordings and V2 Records and each label had 300 each, making the total 600 and highly rare.
The album cover was used in the Gilmore Girls episode "I Get a Sidekick Out of You", with Lane and Zach in Meg and Jack's positions, respectively. It was also used for the 2008 Ozy and Millie calendar as both the front cover and for the month of January with the characters Ozy and Mille replacing Jack and Meg.
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Get Behind Me Satan entered the U.S. and UK charts at #3, ranking higher in the U.S. charts than their previous records, but lower in the UK charts than Elephant. "Blue Orchid", the first single, became a radio hit in the United States and the band's second UK Top 10 hit. "My Doorbell" was the second single from the album, followed by "The Denial Twist". Both also reached the Top 10 in the UK and charted on the Modern Rock Charts as well.
In 2006, the album was included in 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die, edited by Robert Dimery, but was removed in the 2007 edition. "Instinct Blues" was featured in Michel Gondry's 2006 film The Science of Sleep. It was voted the sixth best album of the year in the 2006 Village Voice Pazz and Jop critic poll, with the song "My Doorbell" being voted as the year's ninth best single.
All songs written and composed by Jack White.
|4.||"Forever for Her (Is Over for Me)"||3:15|
|6.||"The Denial Twist"||2:35|
|10.||"Take, Take, Take"||4:22|
|11.||"As Ugly as I Seem"||4:10|
|13.||"I'm Lonely (But I Ain't That Lonely Yet)"||4:19|
|Japan edition bonus tracks|
|14.||"Who's a Big Baby?"||3:21|
|15.||"Though I Hear You Calling, I Will Not Answer"||3:25|
The White Stripes
- Jack White – lead vocals, guitar, piano, mandolin, marimba, tambourine
- Meg White – drums, percussion, backing vocals, triangle, bells, bongos, lead vocals on "Passive Manipulation"