Keys' Attack Releases Old Rut

Garage band figures out how to expand
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2008 10:33 AM CDT

(Newser) – The Black Keys had hoped collaborating with Ike Turner would finally push the band out of its tired “garage minimalism,” writes Pitchfork’s Roque Strew. Though Ike died in December, the band already had material that expanded its sound. Attack & Release is its “most adventurous album to date,” mixing the expected “crossroads-blues” style with the “futuristic accents” of producer (and Gnarls Barkley-ite) Danger Mouse.

The New York Daily News’ Jim Farber agrees, saying the Keys squared off against selling out and won “resoundingly.” Its “primal rhythms” mesh perfectly with a “subtle sheen of production manipulation,” and its dark fifth record ends up with new ideas and nuance that upend the band’s creative block.