Obsess Much? : The Black Keys, Rhythm method

When you’re a fan of a band who have more than a couple of albums, there will inevitably be an album in the discography that doesn’t hit you quite like the others. Maybe there are a couple of songs that make you groove, but this album usually gets relegated to the bottom of the pile, given only an occasional spin. You probably even have this with your favorite band, the band you would give blood for. For instance, my excessive-to-the-point-of-being-obsequious apologies to the Afghan Whigs, but 1965 is the Whigs album I pull out the least. Even less than Up In It. There, I said it.

The Black Keys have put out six full albums and three EPs, not including BlakRoc or Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney’s side projects, and Thickfreakness kept sitting at the bottom of my stack. Thickfreakness, their second album and the first released on Fat Possum Records, has some very strong tracks, undoubtedly (and one of the best titles of all time). The title track, “Set You Free” and their cover of “Have Love, Will … Continue reading

Obsess Much? : Dan Auerbach never stops

Okay, in terms of making this Cadillac Sky Week at NTSIB, this may be cheating a little, but since it’s my blog and you can’t stop me…

Dan Auerbach – of Akron, Ohio’s the Black Keys, if you don’t know by now – loves music. This may seem an obvious thing to say about a musician, but it’s more true of some than others. To quote the man himself from his Nonesuch feature page, “I’m pretty obsessed with making music and with recording, I’m always thinking about it. It drives my family crazy. But it’s what I do.” Auerbach likes being on both sides of the recording console and in his “spare” time, he lends his help, and his home studio, to a long list of bands. Here is a gathering of Auerbach-produced songs from bands ranging in vibe from bluegrass to blues to punk.

Cadillac Sky – Nashville, Tennessee

Obviously, we here at NTSIB love these guys and encourage you, again, to pick up their new album, Letters in the Deep, and catch them live if at … Continue reading

Obsess Much? : The Black Keys, All times are now

I had already planned to obsess some more about the Black Keys, and specifically about how the biggest reason I love Dan Auerbach is because he is a music sponge, today when I learned that NPR Music had posted the new Black Keys album Brothers in their “First Listen” feature.

Let me just get this out of the way now: I am in love with this album. Every song hits me in a way that gets me excited. These 55 minutes of music go by far too fast.

(And if you put on your headphones and turn “Howlin’ For You” up loud enough, it sounds like the walls are coming down around you. Spectacular.)

Okay, now I’ll try to calm down enough to formulate coherent thought.

I’m going to start off by apologizing to Patrick Carney for excluding him so often when I talk about the music of the Black Keys. The Black Keys would not be the Black Keys without Carney – you can’t just Spinal Tap another drummer into his place. He is a monster … Continue reading

Obsess Much? : The Black Keys, Magic Potion

Obsess Much? is a new feature wherein I will do what I do best, the very thing that led me to start this blog in the first place: completely fixate on one artist/album/genre/enclave/whatever and talk on and on and on about it, sharing information and opinions with anyone in shouting distance, whether they like it or not.

You’re loving it already, right?

So whomever/whatever I’m obsessing on, whether a new artist or an act who has been around for a while or a band who aren’t even together anymore, I will share my enthusiasm in unnecessarily great detail.

Regular readers may have noticed that, since the Black Keys posted their new song “Tighten Up” from their forthcoming album Brothers on their MySpace page, I have been hardcore about all things coming from these two, sharp Akron boys. As an Ohioan who seems to be subconsciously drawn to acts from Ohio, I have been listening to and loving the Black Keys for a long time, but it is only with this current wave of fixation that I have nearly … Continue reading