tickle the ebonies

The Black Keys released their new album El Camino today, and I feel safe in saying it’s fit to crack the world open.

I’ve liked all their previous albums, but haven’t found one I wanted to listen to all the way through since Rubber Factory. I can’t bring myself to hit skip with this one, and by the time it spins down I’m ready to start it back up again.

“Lonely Boy” kicks off strong as the album’s first single. The vinyl release was part of the Black Friday promotion for Record Store Day, and while I didn’t make it out then, it’s soaring my way by carrier pigeon as of this morning.

“Little Black Submarines” is receiving a lot of buzz as one of the strongest tracks, and I couldn’t agree more. It starts off plaintive & acoustic, building into a blast halfway through when Patrick Carney beats his kit to rubbish and Auerbach sets his guitar to wailing. It’s a moment of break-sweat exhilaration extended out over the next two minutes, and it’s a thing of beauty.

Produced by Danger Mouse, El Camino continues the Keys’ evolution from a stomping, clear-cut duo into a band with a solid set of tools under their belt. It’s too bad most music sites already have their ‘best-of’ lists locked in, or this would be a sure contender.

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