The Black Keys Live at O2 Academy, Glasgow 28/10/10


A band that has only recently received the appreciation they deserve following the release of sixth album, Brothers, which reached number three in the Billboard 200 earlier this year, garage rock duo, The Black Keys, embody the epitome of the evolved blues-rock sound which saw a resurgence in the 1990s.

Hailing from Akron, Ohio, vocalist/guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney capture the raw energy of blues but with the cutting distortion of rock to produce an electric sound that is best seen live.

Entering the stage to what appeared to be an off cut of the Blackroc album, the duo proceeded to play the title track from their 2003 album Thickfreakness, a slower blues number with heavy distortion but full of feeling.

Focusing on older material for the earlier part of their set, they reiterated what an impressive backlog they have; the older fans relishing the fact that they weren’t just playing their latest release, a problem found with all too many bands.

Difficult to comprehend as the work of only two men, the duo manage to have the energy and sound of a whole band without ever sounding sparse or weak. “Stack Shot Billy”, for example, provided an emotional outlet for Auerbach, whilst “10am Automatic” saw the two playing literally on top of each other, the intensity shared by both being truly remarkable .

As the set developed, they moved on to play some of their newer material, ably aided by Nick Movshon on the bass and Leon Michels on the organ from The Mighty Imperials. As a giant disco ball emerged from a box on stage, the band broke into “Everlasting Light”, with Auerbach’s falsetto resonating over the ensemble.

Despite the songs working very well,with the added band members allowing for greater flexibility, the highlights of the show were definitely when the pair were left on their own. As a two piece, the chemistry between them seemed to flow, the simple bond of guitars and drums creating a huge level of raw intensity. The deftness of Auerbach’s fuzzy guitar combined with the fervour of Carney’s drums allowed for a deep heartfelt passion of the music they were playing.

Ending with “I Got Mine”, which left the crowd in a frenzied stupor, they returned after due applause to play “Sinister Kid” and “Your Touc”h to leave the audience mesmerised by what they had just seen.

On the train home, it was impossible not to overhear countless numbers of people who had been truly blown away by what they had just seen. If you have yet to see The Black Keys live, then make sure you get a ticket, as it is something that really can’t be missed.

Taken from The Student, published Tue Nov 2nd 2010.

First Track From Black Keys New Album

I announced details in an earlier post about the Ohio blues-rock music duo ‘The Black Keys’ upcoming album ‘Brothers’. Their last album ‘Attack, Sustain, Release’ came out two years ago although many of you would have been aware of the collaboration they did towards the end of last year with various hip-hop and R&B artists entitled ‘Blackroc’.

The band have recently uploaded the first track from the album ‘Tighten Up’ on their Myspace page. The only track on the album to be produced by Danger Mouse this definitely comes through with the addition of whistling and his signature upbeat tempo and groovy guitars. Even though Danger mouse isn’t producing the whole thing i’m sure it will be very good.

Hear it right here and judge for yourself

‘Brothers’ will be released on May 18th

Black Keys Announce Title of New Album

American rock-blues duo from Ohio ‘The Black Keys’ have announced the title and tracklisting of their upcoming album’Brothers’. Consisting of vocalist and guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney, this will be the bands sixth studio album and the third on Nonesuch records. Their last album ‘Attack Sustain Release’ in 2008 was rated very highly among critics and the song ‘I Got Mine’ made number 23 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 100 best songs of 2008.

Unlike the last record which was produced by Danger Mouse, (‘Tighten Up’ is the only song on the new album produced by Danger Mouse) most of the record is produced by the band themselves with Mark Neill contributing to some of the songs.

tracklisting is as follows:

1) Everlasting Night
2) Next Girl
3) Tighten Up
4) Howlin’ For You
5) She’s Long Gone
6) Black Mud
7) The Only One
8) Too Afraid to Love You
9) Ten Cent Pistol
10) Sinister Kid
11) The Go Getter
12) I’m Not the One
13) Unknown Brother
14) Never Gonna Give You Up (Jerry Butler)
15)These Days

‘Brothers’ will be released on May 18th