Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Review: The Black Keys - Brothers (* * * *)

Over the past few years, Patrick Carney and Dan Auerbach have done much in the name of progress. Working with Danger Mouse to produce their 2008 album Attack & Release, providing the rhythm section for the rap-rock experiment Blakroc, and taking the time to focus on side projects last year definitely served to shake things up for a duo that was previously known more for their impressive consistency than for their innovation. Yet somehow it’s their latest record, Brothers, that feels like the most ingenuous step forward for the band in quite some time—and tellingly, with this new effort the Black Keys needed little outside assistance to accomplish that. While Brothers may be considered a return to the basics for the Akron, OH natives by some, the spread of ideas here sets the album apart from the band’s earliest material while the quality of the songs themselves makes this recent collection their strongest in some time, rivaled perhaps only by 2004's excellent Rubber Factory. (Read the rest @ In Review Online!)