Throwback playlist! Sure, sure, our Detroit Proud Playlists are dedicated to bringing you the best of the best in Detroit music each week – from yesterday and today – so what makes this week so special? Well, we’ve decided to jump back in time…to the early ‘00s – when garage and punk rock took over the music scene here in Detroit and a then-unknown musician named Jack White started a small, yet ambitious, project…

…that small project was called the Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit, an album made from all of Detroit’s BEST garage rock bands of that time – including one of the biggest bands to come out of Detroit, The White Stripes.

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The compilation sounds like it could have come straight from the early Detroit rock from the ‘60s and ‘70s. Produced and laid to eight-track by Jack White, all 13 bands used the same microphones and amps in the same room to create this slice of retro-underground rock. The Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit had gone on to receive much acclaim all over Detroit – and even overseas in Europe – and people still, to this day, look for the rare, hard-to-find copies of the original album.

So, check it out – it’s a piece of history here in Detroit!

Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit


The Paybacks – “Black Girl”
Comprised of members from other Detroit bands (The Hentchmen, Rocket 455, Ten High and The Muggs), The Paybacks take it back to traditional rock and roll – and they’re not afraid to rock hard. Though they’ve been on hiatus since 2007, there’s still plenty of music released in their time to dig through!

The Dirtbombs – “I’m Through With White Girls”
Formed by Detroit band The Gories’ guitarist Mick Collins, The Dirtbombs are most known for their diverse influences of punk rock and soul, while featuring a dual bass and dual drum line-up. They’ve been going strong since 1992 and have released over six full-length albums!

The Hentchmen – “Accusatory”
With a minimal ‘60s-inspired approach to their music, having only a guitar, organ, and drums, The Hentchmen crafted a new take on garage-rock. Occasionally featuring Jack White, before he formed The White Stripes, The Hentchmen describe their sound as “hit and run” and have surely proved to be a staple of Detroit music.

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Come Ons – “Sunday Drive”
Featuring ex-Gore Gore Girls member Deanne Lovan on bass, vocals, and vintage organ, The Dirtbombs’ drummer Patrick Pantano, and guitarist Jim Johnson, Come Ons play a danceable, yet soul-filled rock. They were an immediate sensation in Detroit, though they achieved more success after the release of Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit.

Bantam Rooster – “Run Rabbit Run”
A garage-rock band from Lansing, Bantam Rooster was made up of only two members: vocalist and guitarist Thomas Jackson Potter and drummer Eric Cook. Known for their hillbilly-influenced garage-punk sound, the duo could go from all out rock and roll to more melodic and lyrical work.

The Von Bondies – “Sound of Terror”
They’re known as Detroit’s “touring act,” having toured all through Europe, Australia, and the United States. The Von Bondies were one of the biggest bands to come out of Detroit, for their fusion of raw blues heartache with fierce, gritty punk rock. Oh, and guess what? You can catch former Von Bondies Jason, Leann, and Don performing their debut show as PONYSHOW at this year’s Metro Times Blowout Pre-party on 4/30.

The Buzzards – “High Class”
A garage-rock band that puts their own creative spin on the typical Detroit genre by adding in an R&B flair, The Buzzards definitely show pride for their hometown within their performances. They’re signed to California’s Sympathy for the Record Industry, a record label that has also signed many other Detroit garage-rock acts.

The Detroit Cobras – “Shout Bama Lama”
The Detroit Cobras are one band that anyone in the Detroit music scene has heard of – at least once. They’re a garage-rock cover band, most known for their retro-garage rock formula, which proved to be very popular overseas in the London underground scene.

Clone Defects – “Whiskey ‘n Women”
If you were a fan of old-school ‘70s punk rock, then you’ll love the Clone Defects. They amp up the traditional style of punk rock and bring it alive again today. They prove that good ol’ rock and roll is still beating hard in Detroit.

The White Stripes – “Red Death at 6:14”
At last, we have it, The White Stripes – one of Detroit’s most well-known and beloved bands. Jack White and his then-wife, Meg White, started a revolution in rock music when they claimed the hearts of millions of fans with their simplistic, yet audacious punk-rock anthems.

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So there you have it, the bands behind one of Detroit’s most sought-after albums…and a step inside the history of the Sympathetic Sounds of Detroit – listen to or purchase it here!