The Black Keys – Yes, I blindly purchased the new CD from The Black Keys (nonesuch) and it’s for some reason titled El Camino. I pay dearly sometimes for making a “blind purchase” when it comes to music. To sum it up, this El Camino CD is boring. It sounds as if Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney are not just huge fans of 70′s Rock… they obviously are both stuck in the “it’s been done already” school of Rock ‘N Roll and are a long way from graduating.
A fuzzy guitar sound with raw and unnecessary fuzzy production is pure nonsense when it comes to this genre of Rock in 2012. The Psychedelic, Stoner, Doom and Black Metal genres can utilize the “fuzz” in their respective sound brilliantly, only a Rock group like The Black Keys should stick to some clarity in their presentation of sound and maybe they won’t come across like a 1977 garage band playing to just their cousins.
Too numerous are the moments on El Camino where I recognize that IT HAS BEEN DONE BEFORE! The Black Keys are not pushing the Rock ‘N Roll envelope here folks and that’s what makes this CD such a waste of time. Where’s the relevance? Listening to this band is like listening to a severely slow-paced Wolfmother with a hangover. The worst song on El Camino is hands down: Little Black Submarines. This song is so annoying, that upon my first listen I wanted to break down and cry, fearing that it made me constipated.
The one and only “bright spot” on El Camino is Sister. This song rocks like there is no tomorrow. Mind Eraser ends this CD on a cool note, still it’s too late. If only The Black Keys stuck to this Rockin’ blueprint of Sister and Mind Eraser throughout all 11 songs… and they didn’t. The digipak and liner notes are equally repetitive and humdrum as the music. Do we really need to waste paper like this? The liner notes are 16 pages which dedicate 15 of these pages to photos of what else? El Caminos. The digipak is a four-fold that features… 8 more photos of… El Caminos! Laugh out loud and Metal be thy name!
By now you realize I’m not a fan of what The Black Keys are trying to accomplish with their Rock sound. If you’re looking for a memorable and original sounding Rock CD you are better off picking up the newest CD from The Trews. Trust me, a thorough listen into Hope & Ruin from The Trews is a quantum leap forward compared to El Camino. The Black Keys surely won’t care about anyone who doesn’t dig their music. Why? They made the cover of Rolling Stone! Life goes on…
El Camino – Track Listing:
Dead And Gone
Gold On The Ceiling
Little Black Submarines
Run Right Back
Hell Of A Season