For a rootsy duo, the Black Keys have proved themselves far more open to experimentation and collaboration than the tradition would dictate. From opening for Radiohead to being covered by Kelly Clarkson to working with a variety of MCs on the hip-hop project Blakroc, singer-guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney have never been leery about wandering off the garage-rock grid. On 2010's Brothers, the duo ventured further into the psychedelic frontier than the group has ever gone before, with a soulful yet head-swimming set that recalls the blistering, bluesy trippiness of everyone from Cream to Jimi Hendrix to Rare Earth. On El Camino, released last December, the Black Keys drift away from the blues somewhat and instead draw more from rock, soul and R&B. One of the unlikely yet worthy survivors of the '90s garage-duo boom, the Keys clearly have it locked down.
Tue., May 1, 2012