It's hard to believe that it's only been three years since we last heard from the [artist id="1940303"]White Stripes[/artist]. But ever since the band went on indefinite hiatus following an abruptly canceled tour in support of 2007's Icky Thump, the big question has been, "Is this the end?"
While group leader Jack White has kept plenty busy, launching his side bands the Raconteurs and the Dead Weather, opening a studio/recording complex in Nashville, jamming with Conan O'Brien on his new show, and cutting that James Bond song with Alicia Keys, his cohort and ex-wife, drummer Meg White, has kept a very low profile since the Stripes pulled the plug on the Thump tour as a result of her acute anxiety attack.
But the long wait may be coming to a close, according to Jack. The tireless musical force hints in the December issue of Vanity Fair that the dynamic duo is ready to get back to work.
"We thought we'd do a lot of things that we'd never done: a full tour of Canada, a documentary, coffee-table book, live album, a boxed set," White told the magazine in an interview promoting a new 333-piece limited-edition White Stripes Merchandise Collection, a typically over-the-top package that includes an LP and 7-inch singles vinyl box set, a record player, a slipmat, branded headphones and a red vinyl pressing of the rare 2002 "Merry Christmas From the White Stripes" for $499.
Though the interview is not online yet, Antiquiet.com posted a scan of it in which White said completing the box set was a laborious process that paved the way for the comeback. "It was one long project that took almost three years," he said. "Now that we've gotten a lot of that out of our system, Meg and I can get back in the studio and start fresh."
The blog noted that with Dead Weather cohorts Dean Fertita and Alison Mosshart working on new projects with their primary bands and his Raconteurs rhythm section of Jack Lawrence and Patrick Keeler promoting the long-awaited new album from their Cincinnati-based band, the Greenhornes, it seems like the lane is open for the Stripes to return.