Tuesday, December 6, 2011

We Check In With Pitchfork to See If It's Still Okay to Like The Black Keys

As scenesters, we always feel like we should turn against a band once they achieve the level of fame The Black Keys have reached in recent years (they were on SNL, for goodness sake!). But the truth is that we still dig them, perhaps primarily because we saw one of their blistering early career gigs at the Replay for three bucks and we can forever lord that little bit of scenester-knowledge over the heads of any recent fans.

But let's take a look at Pitchfork's review of their new album, El Camino, which is out today.

The review first offers a terrific assessment of the band's full career, including this description of the debut: "...The Big Come Up emerged in 2002 and offered a walking rockist orgasm: two gawky white dudes from Akron, Ohio, drums and surly guitar and burning-oatmeal-mouthed yawps of not terribly articulate romantic frustration, all powering cartoonishly virile garage-blues jams of prison-phone-call fidelity and sentiment. Ridiculous and kind of awesome. (This assumes racially uneasy cultural appropriation is no longer an issue for you, but if so, feel free to evoke the Blueshammer scene in the Ghost World movie and the hell with it.)."

Richard: "Believe me, I evoke the Blueshammer scene in Ghost World every chance I getn during debates about 'uneasy cultural appropriation.' "

And the new album itself. We're sold simply on this description of a single song: ""Gold on the Ceiling" is just filthy, like George Thorogood scoring porn, all raunchy organ and licentious handclaps and chorus help from ladies attempting to sound like the sorts of ladies Steely Dan loved to write songs about."

Chip: "I have a feeling this song is going to give me a boner."

Final verdict from Pitchfork is 7.4: "...their best and (not coincidentally) goofiest album, a veritable frat-worthy "Pimp 'n' Ho" party in which T. Rex has somehow been tricked into serving as house band."

Read the full Pitchfork review here .

Also, holy shit, look at these photos from The Black Keys and The Hefners at the Replay circa 2003 over here .


Johnny Hamms said...

I was at that '03 Black Keys Replay gig. Absolutely packed, couldn't see a thing, even though I was just a few feet away at the bar with my girlfriend of the time. Smoke-filled bar, everyone hammered, sweaty bodies all rubbing up against each other to those thick grooves...one of the best gigs ever. And the band wasn't too bad either!

Chip said...

Johnny Hamms, your review just gave me a boner: "sweaty bodies all rubbing up against each other to those thick grooves."