The duo's last album "Attack and Release" in 2008 helped Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney make the jump from cult status to mainstream. Opinion was sharply divided on the benefits of Danger Mouse's production, and from the general reaction it seems the band may have lost as many diehard fans as it gained new ones.
Perhaps in response to the outcry, Brian Burton's involvement this time round is limited to just the one track, "Tighten Up", with the rest of the album produced by the Keys themselves. But his influence appears to have lingered, with the band's original raw, rough and underproduced sound seemingly consigned to history.
Recorded at the legendary Muscle Shoals studios, you can almost feel the ghosts of those long-gone southern soul greats stalking the sessions. It's a bluesy, swampy, funky and soulful affair that's immediately recognisable as The Black Keys but at the same time suggests a band not content to tread water or simply rest on its laurels. Highlights include "Ten Cent Pistol", the catchy "Next Girl", "Sinister Kid" and "I'm Not the One".
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