The Black Keys’ new album, El Camino, hits record stores on December 6. From the four cuts we’ve heard – including the October 26 released single, Lonely Boy – this album is tight, swift, solid, and rocks a steady sound of all-American cool. And these two dudes are sooo cool.
The critics are hyped, with nothing but praise for the bands seventh release. Rolling Stone Magazine cooed, “Oh, yeaaaaaaaah. The first blast from the Keys’ supremely great forthcoming El Camino (trust us, it’s a monster) is all supercharged riffage, cave-man stomp and devil-on-his-tail heartbreak howling. Play it at night, play it loud, play it often.”. We know we have.
The Black Keys will be taking part in Record Store Day’s second annual “Back to Black” Friday event on November 25th by shipping a limited edition 12-inch of their new single, “Lonely Boy,” (B side is “Run Right Back”) to participating independent music retailers. Frustrated desire is the song’s ostensible theme – “I got a love that keeps me waiting,” Auerbach gripes – but for Keys fans, this is a clean hit of instant gratification.
When deciding on the video for the single “Lonely Boy” the band scraped a much more complicated one, which included the band, in lieu of Derrick Tuggle (D-Tug) dancing and lip-syching that is not only a hoot and makes for a good laugh but is so cool it is undeniably chic. MTV’s James Montgomery says of the clip seen below: “While it features little more than one fabulously funky gentleman and his dazzling array of dance moves, it is truly amazing to behold. ” Montgomery goes on to say: “There’s not only an uninhibited joy to the man’s moves, and it doesn’t hurt matters that the song is pretty fantastic too: a herky-jerky, down-and-dirty boogie powered by some raunchy guitar and a keening organ. If anything, it makes me excited to hear even more of El Camino”
Another band we’re wild for, Blind Pilot – an indie folk pop group, is the flip side to The Black Keys blues soaked rock. In 2008 with the release of their first album, 3 Rounds and a Sound, they embarked on a dizzying ride from relative obscurity to headlining a national club tour in less than a year. But as Stephen Thomas of NPR Music sites, “the real story of Portland, Oregon’s Blind Pilot is about the songs. Led by the acoustic guitar and gentle voice of songwriter Israel Nebeker, Blind Pilot’s heartfelt music is the sort that cultivates devotion among fans, that elicits sing-alongs at concerts, that inspires late night mixtapes.”
On Sept. 13, they released their sophomore effort, We Are the Tide, which focuses more on lush, pretty concoctions like the album-opening “Half Moon“. The bands sound has tightened over time and the group has expanded from the duo of Israel Nebeker and Ryan Dobrowski to a larger fleshed-out sextet. After touring to promote 3 Rounds and a Sound they expanded their core sound with the addition of a banjo, piano, vibraphones, trumpet, violin, and stand-up bass. But don’t fret, they maintain their warmth with their softer material.
Check them out at www.blindpilotmusic.com and don’t forget to support your local, smaller independent record stores by taking part in the second annual “Back to Black” on Thursday, November 25th.