Picks and Pans Review: The Raconteurs

updated 04/21/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 04/21/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Consolers of the Lonely |

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CRITIC'S CHOICE

ALT-ROCK

That Jack White sure does like to keep busy. Less than a year after releasing Icky Thump with the White Stripes, he's back with the second album from his other band, the Raconteurs. After 2006's potent Broken Boy Soldiers, it's pretty clear that this is no halfhearted side project for White. Consolers is another strong effort, with White sharing lead vocals and songwriting with Brendan Benson. The group continues to revive classic rock, displaying a Zeppelin-esque blues streak on stompers like the title track, while also showing flashes of Beatles melodicism.

DOWNLOAD THIS: "You Don't Understand Me," an epic ballad that evokes the Fab Four after a night out at the juke joint

Leona Lewis

Spirit |

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POP

It's pretty telling that a remake is the best song on Spirit, the debut by British sensation Leona Lewis, which arrives in the U.S. five months after its record-breaking U.K. release. Her version of the Roberta Flack classic "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" shows just what this winner of Britain's The X Factor is capable of with great material. While the rest of Spirit, including the No. 1 hit "Bleeding Love," is solid, it's never quite smashing. And though Lewis has the vocal chops to draw comparisons to Whitney and Mariah, she lacks a killer original like "You Give Good Love" or "Vision of Love" to really announce a new diva's arrival.

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