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The Black Keys - Rubber Factory (Cover Artwork)

The Black Keys

The Black Keys: Rubber FactoryRubber Factory (2004)
Fat Possum Records

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:


Contributed by: JesseJesse
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Being a two piece neo-bluesy rock n' roll act will instantly draw comparisons to a few well known no-talent ass clowns. That's a shame since The Black Keys are everything those bar-brawling shit-fuckers wish they were. Rubber Factory is the follow up to 2003's Thickfreakness, and is nothing but gr.
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Being a two piece neo-bluesy rock n' roll act will instantly draw comparisons to a few well known no-talent ass clowns. That's a shame since The Black Keys are everything those bar-brawling shit-fuckers wish they were. Rubber Factory is the follow up to 2003's Thickfreakness, and is nothing but grittier, catchier, and more raw.

Rubber Factory comes as a Blues 101 course taught by Professor Punk Rock. The guitar is bluesy, edgy and fuzzed out of its mind. The drums are simplistic and 100% Keith Moon, 100% '73 Motown. Slap down some of the most soulful vocals I've heard in a long time on top of that, and you've got yourself one tasty sandwich.

"When the Lights Go Out" kicks off the CD with drums that emulate the sounds of an industrial factory, as a violin plays one note steadily in the background to sound like a warning alarm. The advertised single, "10 A.M. Automatic," follows with a catchy three chord hook, and straight forward drums. It's the perfect single. Not only is it catchy, but it gives a good sample of the band without giving away the best. "Just Couldn't Tie Me Down" and "Keep Me" draw influence from old blues greats like Muddy Waters or B.B. King. Easily my favorite track, "Grown So Ugly," channels the spirit of Hendrix with it's raucous riffs and pounding drums. "Act Nice and Gentle" is a refreshing honky-tonk country-blues with excellent slide guitar work accompaniment.

I can't stress enough how amazing and bluesy and soulful Dan Auerbach's vocals are. Raspy, yet rich, he pours true emotion out of his vocal chords, crooning the blues to America's youth. He's a true modern day blues-man, pulling out amazing solos that rely on guitar tone almost as much as the notes that he's playing. As if that wasn't enough to sell the band, Patrick Carney's drumming is simple, masterful, and ripe with subtle technique. He knocks his skins not to keep the rhythm, but to accentuate the guitar and vocals, proving that he's not auxiliary, but necessary and irreplaceable.

Overall, The Black Keys put out a solid and amazing piece of music. The only downside to this that I found was that listening to the entire album through got slightly repetitious, but maybe that's because I've listened to it 10 times through since I got it two days ago.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
drbino (February 29, 2008)

Couldn't agree with you more. Great album and (another) good review from Jesse. 3 thumbs up!!

ChrisML123 (September 20, 2004)

Excellent review, articulate, funny and correct. It gives you a great impression of what the album sounds like - its just as good as he says.

Yes it does seem a little repetitve, but now I think about it, that's probably cos I've listened to it at least 6 times since I got it two days ago as well lol.

Finally - "well known no-talent ass clowns" and "those bar-brawling shit-fuckers" - Thank you, I was praying the link would be to the white stripes. Well done man.

Anonymous (September 18, 2004)

"The Black Keys = Good.

This Review = Bad.

Die please."

I'll get right on that. I've got a few pounds of coke to snort, plus I'm sitting in my water-filled tub with the toaster ready to rock. Bring it on!

-Jesse

501 (September 18, 2004)

Name one good band Led Zeppelin has had an influence on.

Well for starters theirs a good person who has been impacted by Zeppelin, that being Dave Grohl. And you being BSD, will assurly assult that reponce with reasons why Grohl sucks and what not. There are more bands Zeppelin has impacted but whats the point in listing them when your going to just say ''they all suck'' because they arint punk?

FatCat (September 18, 2004)

"There's Big Ben, there' s Buckingham Palace, there's Jimmy Page, the greatest thief of American black music ever." - Homer Simpson

Anonymous (September 18, 2004)

The Black Keys = Good.

This Review = Bad.

Die please.

hungryjoe (September 17, 2004)

1) Rage Against the Machine ripped off "Kashmir" for "Wake Up"
2) The Rolling Stones adapted the riff from "Trampled Under Foot" for "Miss You"....which was later lifted by Franz Ferdinand, but that's another story.

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

I'm a fan of the Black Keys, The white stripes and Led Zeppelin. I guess I'm fucked.

Jesse, I'm sure you'll just say you "don't care" but people probably think this review is shit simply because you open by bashing the stripes. Honestly The Black Keys deserve way more respect in a review than that. That's too bad you hate the stripes. Tell us why you like the keys..

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

The Rye Coalition

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

Name one good band Led Zep had a huge influence on.

-BSD

Haggard (September 16, 2004)

"You people are as dumb as it would be ten years from now if kids my age liked pop-metal ala POISON, SCORPIONS, and QUEENSRYCHE. I can see it now. "

But, Led Zeppelin actually had talent and impacted rock music on a large scale.

-Justin

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

Also, even though I think some of your reviews contain quality, this is one of the many that start out pleading for street cred. Anyone who criticsizes a band for being too "simple" had better be able to write songs as well or better than them. A band's playing ability only matters when they're trying to be intricate. Blues is simple run-down scales.

So do you like Akimbo better than the Ramones? "WATCH THEM PLAY THEM SCALES!"... I'm waiting for you and other cynical critic types to write a "Rocket to Russia" or "Leave Home".

I'm contradictory? Is "minimalism" your fucking excuse for liking some of the easiest music ever? The Velvet Underground? The Stooges?

What difference does having 2 people instead of 4 make? Especially when Jack White is a much more capable guitar than Asheton. The Stooges were a blues band. Hell, almost all real rock bands are basically blues bands at heart. The only thing that separates it is skill and speed.

I couldn't be more wrong? I'm sorry, you like classic rock.

You people are as dumb as it would be ten years from now if kids my age liked pop-metal ala POISON, SCORPIONS, and QUEENSRYCHE. I can see it now.

"Dude, you're an idiot! 'Don't Believe In Love' is a CLASSIC of the rock genre, right up there with 'Welcome to the Jungle'."

-BSD

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

"And you thought Keith Moon was the guitar player for The Who."

What? I think I might be able to sue you for that.

I was making fun of your idiotic review. But I'm sure you can play through "Quadrophenia" in a snap. Yeah, try keeping up with that. Keith Moon was actually very talented.

These guys are the hacks.

And the White Stripes aren't rock n roll. These guys are. White Stripes are better because they cover ragtime/"old-timey" songs.

I'm sorry, your review is just flawed to anyone who knows about the history of rock. I don't doubt that you've heard a lot, or that you're a good musician, but you gave it all up by calling Keith Moon's drumming tech easy. Let's see you play those beats.

-BSD

Haggard (September 16, 2004)

"Led Zep sucked, and anyone who disagrees just has pretty piss poor musical taste. "

HAHAHAHAHA.

This is probably the funniest thing I have read in the past week.

-Justin

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

"No talent assclown" is strictly reserved for Pat Dubar

and for Benji from Good Charlotte

-----

BSD=wussemorock=troll

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

Led Zep sucked? Bsd your a goon.

Barkley

Jesse (September 16, 2004)

"So? Any band with only one talented member is a gimmick band now? As if your favorite Stooges album isn't "Fun House", that "no-talent" "ass-clown" product of "gimmick" from 30 something years ago? Don't pretend that isn't a total contradiction. The guitarist on their first two albums like totally barely knew how to play."

When you're in a two person blues band, you better have two talented musicians.

"Velvet Underground's drummer was minimalist/barely skilled, too..."

Minimalist is different from being a piss poor musician. The Velvet Underground wasn't about drums, it was about experimentalism and basic rock n' roll.

"Rock is about speed, often precision, but very little math"

You couldn't be more wrong. Rock isn't about speed at all. That's probably the stupidest thing that could ever be said. If rock was about speed, then you wouldn't like The White Stripes. Almost all of their songs are mid-tempo.

It boils down to this: you're being arguementive and ignorant, not to mention contradictory. And you thought Keith Moon was the guitar player for The Who.

Jesse (September 16, 2004)

Keith Moon was the drummer. Pete Townsend was the guitar player.

Eat it.

Anonymous (September 16, 2004)

the kinks > led zep

Cos (September 15, 2004)

"robert plant is a slimy fuck/ john bonham man, he really sucked/ those greedy fuckers, those phoney shits/ they made their money off idiots/--I Hate Led Zeppelin--/ 12 dollar concerts were all the rage/ they bought cocaine for jimmy page/ "stairway to heaven" makes me see red/ bonzo's buried, only three more left/--I Hate Led Zeppelin--"

The Weez was so hardcore back in the day...

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

This score is for:

1) The Black Keys and Rubber Factory (rocks, plain and simple)
2) The ignorance of BSD (i love your trolling, makes for good reading)
3) The Slashdot reference 2 posts down (nerd!)
4) The excessive trashing of the White Stripes (Jack White wishes his band has this much soul)

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

No comment yet on how good "The Lengths" is?

CallingLondon (September 15, 2004)

this sounds really good, but if you ever rip on the stripes again, i'll rape you.

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

has pretty piss poor musical taste.

You lose, man. You lose. I hate Zeppelin, but I'm convinced that you're just a troll at this point. No more than those GNAA kids at Slashdot. Anyone with any semblance of intelligence knows that saying someone's "musical taste" is bad automatically voids your warranty on making any fucking sense or having an argument.

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

Also, if you think Keith Moon was "simplistic"... Oh never mind.

I'm waiting for you to send me that Who song you can play on guitar, Jesse.

LET'S SEE THIS!

-BSD

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

"They are probably the best band in the history of rock; considering every single review you ever wrote was 70's punk or sounded just like it, I think its obvious you have pretty limitted taste. There is a whole world of music beyond 3 power chords, you should give it a try some time"

Are you kidding?

The Beatles, anyone? The Rolling Stones? The Who?

Just because you're ignorant doesn't mean you have to be stupid. Led Zep sucked, and anyone who disagrees just has pretty piss poor musical taste.

-BSD

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

"Face it, The White Stripes are radio babies. Meg White isn't a musician. Jack shows her how to play the drum part for every song. Therefore: gimmick band.

Jack White also produced tons of shitty bands. Just because he made lots of cash and got to produce a country legend doesn't mean he didn't also produce The Von Bondies a year or two ago. ZING."

So? Any band with only one talented member is a gimmick band now? As if your favorite Stooges album isn't "Fun House", that "no-talent" "ass-clown" product of "gimmick" from 30 something years ago? Don't pretend that isn't a total contradiction. The guitarist on their first two albums like totally barely knew how to play.

Velvet Underground's drummer was minimalist/barely skilled, too...

It just so happens that even though it may be simpler music than your ignorant and mathematically inclined tastes, this set of assholes will never really rock. Also see why the Dillinger Four will never be as good as Minor Threat.

Rock is about speed, often precision, but very little math.

Unless, of course, you tune into the Zep hour on your local metal station.

-BSD

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

epitaph should buy fat possum. they do have some quality artists, and epitaph is in desperate need for quality artists. bob log the third deserves to be on anti-. "pass my glass around the room, dip you boob in my scotch. boob scotch." classic.

TheOnetrueBill (September 15, 2004)

The meatmen had the song "1 down 3 to go" but it was about the Beatles, not Zep.

TheOnetrueBill (September 15, 2004)

"No talent assclown" is strictly reserved for Pat Dubar

Anonymous (September 15, 2004)

"The White Stripes have actual depth and blues/grass influences."

Holly Golightly isn't just someone who sings on there record, shes put out dozens of records covering all the territory the stripes could wish for.

And thats if you stop at holly and don't go into all the other sundry members of her little microcosm of rock perfection like Dan Melchior and Billy Childish, and Ludella Black, and the endless bands spawned by there involvements with each other (seriously, dozens upon dozens of bands).

And Billy Childish, for the love of GOD, SOMEONE GIVE BILLY CHILDISH THE KEY TO A CITY!

even fucking dubuque, no one cares about dubuque, cmon, give him dubuque, no ones even gonna notice!

oh, all im saying is the white stripes are alright, but will always just signify how little real recognition of musicians ever actually exists or can be coddled into the mianstream at any given time.

wyzo

REALPUNX4LIFE (September 14, 2004)

Wow, someone at punknews.org doesn't like The White Stripes. Another doesn't like Led Zeppelin. This is a fucking edgy-a-thon! Will someone speak up against New Found Glory soon? Perhaps The Monkees? Time will tell! It's a controversy a minute!

It's times like this that I wish my OI OI OI!!! bit wasn't soooo last year. You bitches are fucking lame.

Jesse (September 14, 2004)

"The White Stripes have actual depth and blues/grass influences."

Oooh, buddy, don't hate on The Black Keys until you give them a thorough listen. Face it, The White Stripes are radio babies. Meg White isn't a musician. Jack shows her how to play the drum part for every song. Therefore: gimmick band.

Jack White also produced tons of shitty bands. Just because he made lots of cash and got to produce a country legend doesn't mean he didn't also produce The Von Bondies a year or two ago. ZING.

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

The first album was great; I haven't heard the new stuff yet.

BSD, there is nothing stupider than saying ANY style of music, as a whole, sucks. Every single "classification" of music has had probably hundreds of great CDs, they are just often mixed with a lot of crap. Also, saying that the rest of Led Zeppelin was just a backing band for Page is retarded. John Bonham is the single greatest drummer in rock and roll history, bar none (including Perth and the guy from Tool). Jones was a great bassist and keyboardist (Lemon Song is a masterpeice). Plant was the most charismatic man to ever walk up to a mic, AND a good singer. They are probably the best band in the history of rock; considering every single review you ever wrote was 70's punk or sounded just like it, I think its obvious you have pretty limitted taste. There is a whole world of music beyond 3 power chords, you should give it a try some time

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

Jimmy Page's cash-in group after a decade recording sessions with some of the greatest bands? Fuck that. Robert Plant can't sing for shit. He evented ball-less vocals in rock by being the worst blues singer ever. The riffs are fucking stale.

I don't care what any of you idiots say: Classic rock sucks.

-BSD

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

saying jack white dosnt have talent is just silly.

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

Old music like LZ is stupid, and so is new music that aspires to emulate old music. Pee on garage/neo-blues/whateverthefuckthatmeans

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

Outside of aesthetics (they both are a guitar/drum duo), I don't think Black Keys and the White Stripes have much in common. Their singers are completely different in style and so are the drummers. Its apples and oranges. Do either of them sound like the Need (another two piece combo)? Hell no. The Keys do one helluva Sonics cover.

Hating on Zep is so punk rock. What did Weasel sing back in the day? "1 dead/Three more to go!"

--Cos

gladimnotemo (September 14, 2004)

Hm, okay...BSD, shut the fuck up. Leave the Black Keys alone. I like the Stripes and these boys, but these men are so much closer to my heart. They've been playing local shows forever, and are now reaping the rewards. It's mindblowing that they do this all by themselves, and have made the sound their own.

I don't like LZ, but who cares? They're not punks, they don't have to follow your imaginary rules.

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

i'm convinced that four stars is the new five stars

bemused (September 14, 2004)

You are a dumbass BSD (I know that should go w/o saying). Led Zepplen are a great band for anyone, regardless of age. Just needed to be said

-chris-

Haggard (September 14, 2004)

"Who are the ass clowns? Well, to start, anyone under 30 who listens to Led Zep by choice."

Wow, I can't believe you actually said that.

-Justin

Anonymous (September 14, 2004)

Hahahaha. Look at who Jack White has worked with. One of the best albums of her career. The White Stripes have actual depth and blues/grass influences. Maybe not your cup of tea, but certainly not untalented.

Who are the ass clowns? Well, to start, anyone under 30 who listens to Led Zep by choice.

Jack White would fuck these jokes up 2 on 1, anyway.

-BSD

kirbypuckett (September 14, 2004)

Why are all the links putting www.punknews.org/ before them?

HMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM?

- Kirby

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