Monday, May 31, 2010


Well, The Drive-By Truckers' The Big To-Do may finally have some competition for my favorite album of 2010! I am really into the new Black Keys album, Brothers.

I'd actually been listening to a bunch of older Black Keys albums (including their last one, the excellent Danger Mouse-produced Attack & Release), because I thought I was going to see them open for Pearl Jam (it didn't happen, because I had to work late). Luckily, I did get to see part of thier in-studio performance at the offices where I work.

I've really enjoyed the band's progression from gut bucket blues duo (kind of like Hound Dog Taylor, but with one guitar instead of two) to something a bit more modern (but not too modern) and with a different kind of funk to it. This album kind of reminds me of the late great Chris Whitley, if he had been a bit funkier. I wish he did an album like this when he did Rocket House (although I love that album).

There's a profile of the band in a recent Rolling Stone (with either Mick Jagger or Keith Richards on the cover). At the end, there's a funny part, where they mull over other popular artists of the moment, including Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber (who neither of them are familiar with), Bo Bice and Band of Horses (who also opened for Pearl Jam on this tour). 15 seconds into Band of Horses' album, the dude complained it was boring. That made me laugh, even though I kind of like BOH.

I realize at this point that if you are one of No Expiration's readers who isn't as familiar with post-'80s music as I am, you might be getting lost. So, let me break it down for you.  If badass dirt-floor blues with '70s style funk appeals to you (and it should), you should check out this album.  You'll like it.  If you do, just start going backwards and pick up their older albums, starting with 2008's Attack & Release. You'll thank me. Here's a video of the singer, Dan Auerbach, peforming at the SIRIUS XM studios last year. These guys are a great band, and I think they will be around for a long time, so pay attention.

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