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Old 12-18-04, 10:28 AM   #1
Rival11
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The Black Keys - Rubber Factory

With all the attention aimed at the White Stripes as of late (which of course is not a bad thing) I somewhat let the Black Keys Rubber Factory pass me by. After finally buying it earlier this week I must say that it's easily their best album.

If you're not familiar with the Black Keys and you're into bands like the Stripes, I highly suggest you give them a try.

My personal favs from Rubber Factory are: Keep Me, All hand against his own, 10am automatic, Stack shot Billy, & Act nice and gentle to me.

Here's a link to their site where you can watch the video for 10am automatic:

http://theblackkeys.com/video.php
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Old 12-18-04, 09:26 PM   #2
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Rubber Factory is a great album...it certainly made my top ten of the year. being a fan of both the Keys and the Stripes i'd have to say like like the Black Keys' sound better. i think it has to do with the bluesier vocals.

i would also recommend the Black Keys and not just to White Stripes fans but to blues/rock, vintage rock, or lo/fi fans as well...aw fuck it, if you like music give them a listen.
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Old 12-19-04, 04:29 AM   #3
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It is a good album, but I don't understand why everyone compares the two bands as they sound nothing alike. Is it the name or the fact that each band is only 2 ppl strong? Apples and oranges.

Plain and simple, the Black Keys add a modern spin on traditional blues (punk and heavy rock) with the production right out of the 50s. The vocalist could pass himself as an authentic 70 yr-old blues crooner, as his wail has more soul than just about any other white man I've ever heard. Closest I can think of worth comparing them to is a louder, more energized version of Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac.
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Old 12-19-04, 12:11 PM   #4
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Well, I listened to a couple of their cds that my friend has - I didn't dislike it, but there were way too many things about them that kept me from really liking them, which is too bad because they have a lot of potential.

First off, they are all armature musicians, at best - I'm not exactly a strong guitar player myself, but the stuff they're playing, I could play in my sleep - it's basically blues 101. This wouldn't normally be a problem if they were strong song writers - they're not. From cliché music cues (just from the first two notes, I can tell what the rest of the 12 bars will be) , to cliché lyrics ("your kind of love drives a man insane"? - c'mon!), there is not one instance of uniqueness in any of their songs.

As far as the singer, when he's on, he sounds alright - but sometimes it sounds like he's singing as if he's reading the words off of something he can't read too well - he'll blurt out a line pretty distinctively, then the next line, he'll just sort of mumble at half the volume.

Then there's their sound. Raw is good, I like raw - this is beyond raw, this is sloppy, unprofessional recording. I make better recordings in my garage. I've heard 30 year-old DEMOS from the Faces that sound better - and no band gets more raw than the Faces. What kills it for the Black Keys, mostly is the drums. Ugh, I haven't heard drums sound this bad in a long time. Not dissimilar from a spork hitting mashed potatoes, it's like they took one microphone and just hung it over the drum set and that was it, instead of putting a mike on each drum to get the maximum effect. I've been in bands where we'll play just for a small room, and even we'd mike the drums better than this band. They rely on guitars for the bottom end of their sound, instead of the kick and bass - again, music 101. These sort of "techniques" would be cool for a couple songs here and there as a sort of effect - but when every song sounds like this, it becomes monotonous.

But the fact that I don't hate them, despite of all this, shows that they have some promise. If they improve as musicians and song-writers, then I'd be interested in their next album... as long as they also get a new producer, or sound engineer.

Last edited by slop101; 12-19-04 at 12:17 PM.
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Old 12-19-04, 05:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slop101
Well, I listened to a couple of their cds that my friend has - I didn't dislike it, but there were way too many things about them that kept me from really liking them, which is too bad because they have a lot of potential.

First off, they are all armature musicians, at best - I'm not exactly a strong guitar player myself, but the stuff they're playing, I could play in my sleep - it's basically blues 101. This wouldn't normally be a problem if they were strong song writers - they're not. From cliché music cues (just from the first two notes, I can tell what the rest of the 12 bars will be) , to cliché lyrics ("your kind of love drives a man insane"? - c'mon!), there is not one instance of uniqueness in any of their songs.

As far as the singer, when he's on, he sounds alright - but sometimes it sounds like he's singing as if he's reading the words off of something he can't read too well - he'll blurt out a line pretty distinctively, then the next line, he'll just sort of mumble at half the volume.

Then there's their sound. Raw is good, I like raw - this is beyond raw, this is sloppy, unprofessional recording. I make better recordings in my garage. I've heard 30 year-old DEMOS from the Faces that sound better - and no band gets more raw than the Faces. What kills it for the Black Keys, mostly is the drums. Ugh, I haven't heard drums sound this bad in a long time. Not dissimilar from a spork hitting mashed potatoes, it's like they took one microphone and just hung it over the drum set and that was it, instead of putting a mike on each drum to get the maximum effect. I've been in bands where we'll play just for a small room, and even we'd mike the drums better than this band. They rely on guitars for the bottom end of their sound, instead of the kick and bass - again, music 101. These sort of "techniques" would be cool for a couple songs here and there as a sort of effect - but when every song sounds like this, it becomes monotonous.

But the fact that I don't hate them, despite of all this, shows that they have some promise. If they improve as musicians and song-writers, then I'd be interested in their next album... as long as they also get a new producer, or sound engineer.
You say music 101, blues 101, etc.......so what? They purposely set out to sound that way and it works and it sounds fucking awesome. Take Rubber Factory, It's less raw than their previous two albums but works on so many different levels it's ridiculous. Also, I don't think it's as basic as you say it is, maybe you look at it differently because you know how to play. They rely on guitars instead of the kick and bass? Again, listen to Rubber Factory and espeacially the big come up - I have to disagree with this.

To each his or her own though - I personally love their sound.
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Old 02-10-06, 10:10 AM   #6
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I just heard this group on a Nissan Xterra ad and really liked the song, it was Set You Free from Thickfreakness. I was going to pick this up, but saw that this is their newest. Which would you recommend me pick up for my introduction to the Black Keys? Or which one is better?
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Old 02-10-06, 10:42 AM   #7
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I would say Rubber Factory is the better one, although both are good. My personal fav is Stack Shot Billy.
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Old 02-10-06, 04:38 PM   #8
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Any Black Keys fans should also check out Deadboy and the Elephantmen. Their new album, We Are Night Sky, is excellent.
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Old 02-12-06, 05:42 PM   #9
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I like them a lot, but their best album IMHO is "The Big Come Up".

If you think "Rubber Factory" is rough around the edges, wait until you hear that one. I actually like how unprofessional it sounds. I really dig the songs with the voice-over from the 1950's educational films - trippy stuff.
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