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Various Artists - [PIAS] Alternative Spirit Album Review

When you think of the words alternative spirit you think -upbeat, raucous indie-pop music and that's exactly what this new PIAS compilation album provides. The album consists of 39 tracks from artists such as Roisin Murphy, Basement Jaxx and Fleet Foxes.

[PIAS] Alternative Spirit - Album Review

Alt-J's Left 'Hand Free' is a fun opening track with its catchy hooks and upbeat melodies - a perfect intro that leads into The Black Keys track 'Tighten Up' which is one of the compilations many highlights. With a raw, blues sound it's everything you'd want (and expect) from a Black Keys track.

One of the more guitar heavy tracks comes courtesy of Bloc Party and their contribution '3x3'. Its hard-hitting vocal and frantic playing remind us just how good their album 'Four' (which the song was featured on) was.

Continue reading: Various Artists - [PIAS] Alternative Spirit Album Review

Dan Auerbach Regrets Inducting "Unpleasant" Steve Miller Into Hall Of Fame

Dan Auerbach STEVE MILLER Black Keys

The Black Keys’ singer Dan Auerbach has blasted rocker STEVE MILLER after the band inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last week, following Miller’s own negative comments about the ceremony.

The 36 year old rocker has told Rolling Stone magazine this week that he’s had many “sleepless nights” since Friday evening’s ceremony (April 8th), saying that the “whole process was unpleasant” leading up to Miller’s induction and that they wished they hadn’t introduced him to the stage.

During his acceptance speech, the 72 year old rock star became the unlikely talking point of the entire ceremony when he used the opportunity to denounce not only the Hall of Fame itself but also the entire music industry, calling them “f***in’ gangsters and crooks”.

Continue reading: Dan Auerbach Regrets Inducting "Unpleasant" Steve Miller Into Hall Of Fame

The 15th Anniversary Line-Up For Primavera Sound Is Finally Here!

Primavera Sound Festival Ride The Strokes Black Keys The Replacements Antony and the Johnsons James Blake Richie Hawtin Simian Mobile Disco Alt-J Patti Smith Belle And Sebastian Damien Rice Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti Perfume Genius The New Pornographers Julian Casablancas Interpol Underworld Caribou Foxygen The Eels Babes In Toyland Sleater-Kinney Albert Hammond Jr

Fans and hopeful attendees of Barcelona's Primavera Sound were delighted to discover that the preview app they downloaded was a video game displaying the full line-up for the festival's fifteenth anniversary.

Primavera Sound 2015 logo

Already announced were Friday and Saturday's headliners Ride and The Strokes, and now they've been joined by a host of other equally incredible artists. Thursday sees The Black Keys leading the bill alongside The Replacements, who are hitting Spanish stages for the first time and Antony and the Johnsons, who've been doing plenty since their last Barcelona gig. Bringing some variation to Thursday proceedings are electronic virtuosos James Blake, Richie Hawtin and Simian Mobile Disco.

Continue reading: The 15th Anniversary Line-Up For Primavera Sound Is Finally Here!

Black Keys And The Prodigy To Co-Headline Isle Of Wight 2015

Black Keys Prodigy Pharrell Williams

Temperatures may be plummeting in Britain, but we’ve got some sunnier festival news for you. The Isle of Wight festival has announced that the Black Keys and the Prodigy will co-headline in 2015.

The two bands will perform on the Friday night of next year’s festival, although the order in which they’ll appear on stage has not yet been confirmed. Pharrell Williams, who has had runaway success as a solo artist in the last 18 months, will also be playing the festival.

Black Keys
U.S. blues-rockers The Black Keys will co-headline Isle of Wight with British veterans The Prodigy

Continue reading: Black Keys And The Prodigy To Co-Headline Isle Of Wight 2015

Reviews: Lana Del Rey, The Concept, Hits Her Stride With "Ultraviolence"

Lana Del Rey Black Keys

Lana Del Rey’s sophomore album (post-transformation, that is), Ultraviolence, is finally out after some questionable promotional tactics. The album is now up for the top spot in the iTunes chart and LDR has her work cut out for her in competing with Sam Smith’s debut record In The Lonely Hour.

Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey returns as a perfectly crafted drama queen in Ultraviolence.

Besides her competition, Del Rey is up against some unfortunate odds; her previous album, Born to Die, was panned by just about every critic in the Western Hemisphere and a good chunk of the hipster crowd.

Continue reading: Reviews: Lana Del Rey, The Concept, Hits Her Stride With "Ultraviolence"

Experience Sun, Sand And Sensational Sounds At Hangout Festival 2014

Black Keys Queens Of The Stone Age The 1975 The Killers Pretty Lights Flaming Lips Fitz & The Tantrums Chance the Rapper Wild Belle Robert DeLong Outkast Jack Johnson Bastille The Avett Brothers Capital Cities Tom Odell Wild Cub

Alabama's sun-soaked, sold-out Hangout Music Fest begins officially today (May 16th 2014) following yesterday's kick-off party - and there's almost too much fun to take in.

Set against the glorious backdrop of Gulf Shores' pure white beaches, this festival truly is the place to 'hang out' this weekend with top headliners The Black Keys, The Killers, Outkast and Jack Johnson leading the talent-studded bill. Acts such as Jack Antonoff's latest project Bleachers, CLASSIXX and Bonobo's DJ set went down a storm at the Discover Great Thursday Kickoff Party, but don't worry if you missed it because things are getting even better over the rest of the weekend.

The Black Keys performing live in Manchester
Headliners The Black Keys open the festival today

Continue reading: Experience Sun, Sand And Sensational Sounds At Hangout Festival 2014

"Ultraviolence" Cover Revealed. Yep, That's Definitely Lana Del Rey

Lana Del Rey Black Keys

Lana Del Rey’s upcoming album hasn’t really matched the buzz of her debut record so far. Things might be about to change, however, with the reveal of the cover art for Ultraviolence. Along with the cover – a black and white shot of the singer looking as pouty as we remember – the album release date was announced for June 16.

Continue reading: "Ultraviolence" Cover Revealed. Yep, That's Definitely Lana Del Rey

Glastonbury Line-Up Confirmed: Elbow, Kasabian, Arcade Fire, Jack White...And Who Else?

Elbow Arcade Fire Glastonbury Festival Dolly Parton Bryan Ferry Blondie Jack White Black Keys Janelle Monae Kelis

After months of speculation, the official line-up has been confirmed for the 2014 Glastonbury Festival, which will be held from the 27th to the 29th June this year. The festival tweeted this year's snazzy line-up poster which listed a tonne of previously unconfirmed acts. Sadly, and despite the rumours, it doesn't look like Prince will be getting funky at Glasto but the appearance of Elbow, Arcade Fire, Kasabian, The Black Keys, and Jack White should make up for the Purple One's absence.

Kasabian Have Been Confirmed To Play Glastonbury Festival This Year.

Joining these four big name acts will be an intriguing and eclectic mix of acts of all sorts of genres. Skrillex, De La Soul, Ms Dynamite, Rudimental, Disclosure, Lil Louis and DJ Pierre will be bringing dance music whilst Kelis, Janelle Monáe, Jurassic 5 and M.I.A will be giving the festival a hip hop flavour.

Continue reading: Glastonbury Line-Up Confirmed: Elbow, Kasabian, Arcade Fire, Jack White...And Who Else?

Who Behaved Worse? Justin Bieber Or Black Keys Drummer Patrick Carney?

Justin Bieber Black Keys

Now, you’d think that 32 year-old Patrick Carney would have thought better of dissing a teenager in public. It’s not very befitting of a grown man, insulting someone nearly half their age. No matter how much money that kid’s got. Then again, with all that money and influence and - no doubt – a hell of a lot of media training - at his disposal, you’d think that Justin Bieber would have thought better of saying that Carney “should be slapped around” for suggesting that Bieber doesn’t really need a Grammy, cos he’s so rich.

Sounds like childplay? Well, yep, we agree. But which one comes off looking worse? It’s hard to say really. Carney, after all was put on the spot and the drummer of the blues rock band probably wasn’t necessarily expecting TMZ to pounce on him at the Grammys and ask what he thought about Bieber being snubbed by the Grammys. In a nutshell, he replied that the Grammys are about music and not money – Bieber’s got tons of money, so he should be happy. And you know what? He’s kind of got a point! It’s not like Bieber needs the exposure of a Grammys win!

Now, we can forgive him a little immaturity, for his age, but Bieber’s response is hardly going to endear him to anybody (apart from his own fans and since when did he need to win them over?). His Twitter post was a lame attempt at a comeback and you know, we don’t mind a war of the words here at Contact, but practically inciting violence? Nope, we’re not cool with that. Carney wins this one, game over.

A Week In News: Bieber Slams The Black Keys, Chris Brown Stays Seated, Alec Baldwin To Become A Father!

Black Keys Justin Bieber Chris Brown Frank Ocean Alec Baldwin Steve Martin Kate Middleton Lady GaGa Katy Perry Carrie Underwood Kate Upton Beyonce Knowles Jay Z

Patrick Carney The Black Keys performing live at the Manchester Arena Manchester, England- 11.12.12


The Black Keys Rub Bieber Up The Wrong Way, Katy Perry 'Hangs Out' At The Grammys And Steve Martin Becomes A Dad At 67

Bieber Rattles The Keys! In perhaps the most bizarre celebrity feud of recent times, Patrick Carney of award-winning group The Black Keys has rubbed Justin Bieber up the wrong way. Asked about the possible reasons for Bieber's Grammys snub, Carney suggested the 18-year-old is rich, so doesn't need prestigious awards. Bieber's response? "The black keys drummer should be slapped around haha."

Continue reading: A Week In News: Bieber Slams The Black Keys, Chris Brown Stays Seated, Alec Baldwin To Become A Father!

Taylor Swift Stars In The New Promo For The Grammys

Taylor Swift Harry Styles Snoop Dogg The Kills Black Keys Rihanna

The first promotional clip for the upcoming Grammy Awards has been released via ETOnline, with country-pop starlet Taylor Swift taking a staring role in the first look at the music awards.

Only a minute long, the promo doesn't show much, but it is the multi-Grammy winning artist who shows her self most prominently in the clip featuring Swift alongside some new and some established talent. With her includes Snoop Lion (formerly Dogg) and The Kills with some emerging artists, like Grace Potter, Kishi Bashi and Dam-Funk.

The new promo is part of three unlinked trailers, with Rihanna staring in one and The Black Keys in the third, titled 'Soundcheck.' The mini-clips were commissioned by The Recording Academy under the Twitter-friendly title #TheWorldIsListening, which seeks to encourage and highlight burgeoning musical talent - and the Grammys now as well. On top of this, the organisation has also set up a page on SoundCloud giving people a chance to upload their own music, whilst presided over by a crack panel featuring members of Linkin Park, RZA, and Snoop.

Continue reading: Taylor Swift Stars In The New Promo For The Grammys

Weighty Line-Up Announced For The Grammys; Rihanna, Taylor Swift And Fun Set To Play

Rihanna Taylor Swift Mumford And Sons Fun Black Keys LL Cool J

To say that the Grammys have attracted a star-studded line-up is a bit like saying there might be a couple of handy actors knocking around the Oscars next month. However, once again it is the crème de la crème of mainstream music that will be attending the annual music ceremony, with the first batch of performers being announced for the event on February 10, 2013.

Many of the nominees for this year’s 55th Grammy Awards are set to put in a turn performing. MTV reports that leading the list are six time nominees and the only act honored in each of the so-called Big Four categories, Record and Song of the Year, Album of the Year and Best New Artist, Fun. British folk duds Mumford & Sons will also perform – the group are also up for six categories this year - while five-time nominees the Black Keys and three-time nominees Rihanna and Taylor Swift will also be taking a turn each. Studded with stars as you can see.

LL Cool J’s been doing a pretty bang up job of hosting the huge event in recent years, and it’ll be he who once again guides everyone through the evening, with plenty more stars still to be confirmed to perform. Hopefully this will be a year where the event won’t be befallen by tragedy, as it did on the eve of last year’s when Whitney Houston passed away in her hotel room.

Continue reading: Weighty Line-Up Announced For The Grammys; Rihanna, Taylor Swift And Fun Set To Play

50th Anniversary Rolling Stones Gig Highlights

Rolling Stones Lady GaGa Bruce Springsteen Black Keys John Mayer

Last night’s 50th anniversary gig at the Prudential Center in Newark saw The Rolling Stones still very much at the top of their game, as the band performed some of their greatest hits and collaborated with a star-studded list of guest performers.

Among those were acts like John Mayer (bet you didn’t see that one coming), who rocked out alongside Keith Richards, giving the rock legend a run for his money, as well as The Black Keys and none other than the Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen, who joined The Stones for Tumbling Down. All in all, it was a good night for rock, with the band putting all of their energy into classic hits like 'Brown Sugar', 'Start Me Up,' 'Sympathy for the Devil' and the ever popular '(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.'  The most unusual collaboration of the night had to have been with Lady GaGa though, who joined the band for a rendition of 'Gimme Shelter' and it was actually, well, good. The Stones have a history of performing with more poppy artists on occasion, such as Mary J Blige and Florence Welch (of Florence and the Machine fame) and it always seemes to work out. It did again this time, with Gaga flaunting not only her impressive singing chops but also her no less spectacular shimmying skills alongside Mick Jagger.

Last night’s gig also had a more serious aspect to it, however, as the Stones and their guest stars took the time to honour the victims of the recent school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. “I just wanted to take a minute and send our love and condolences to those who lost their loved ones yesterday,” Jagger commented solemnly, before going into a performance of 'Wild Horses,' dedicated to the victims.

Continue reading: 50th Anniversary Rolling Stones Gig Highlights

Grammy Nominations 2013: Who Will Win? Who SHOULD Win?

Mumford And Sons Black Keys Fun Frank Ocean Jack White Kelly Clarkson Janelle Monae Gotye Kimbra Taylor Swift Alabama Shakes Hunter Hayes The Lumineers Miguel Carly Rae Jepsen

The nominations for the 55th Grammy Award Nominations in 2013 have officially been announced by the award's organisers. Here’s a run down of some of the main awards, and our tips for Grammy's Glory.

Album Of The Year:

El Camino — The Black Keys

Continue reading: Grammy Nominations 2013: Who Will Win? Who SHOULD Win?

Neil Young And Foo Fighters Lead Central Park Poverty Awareness Concert

Neil Young Foo Fighters Black Keys John Legend Band Of Horses Dave Grohl John Lennon

Neil Young and Foo Fighters were among the star attractions at Saturday night’s Global Citizen Festival in Central Park. The concert was held in order to raise awareness about issues surrounding poverty and according to the Washington Post, organisers “used an innovative approach to ticket distribution so that many concert-goers were forced to learn about an array of global problems in order to get a ticket.”

Anyone wanting to attend the concert, which also featured performances from the Black Keys, John Legend and Band Of Horses, had to register for tickets at They earned ‘points’ towards a ticket for every poverty-related video they watched, of piece of information that they read. Around 71,000 people signed up for tickets and 60,000 of those crowded into Central Park for the unique event. The bands played for a round an hour each and were interspersed with guest speakers talking about global poverty issues.

Neil Young was joined, for his set, by Dave Grohl and members of the Black Keys, for a rendition of his classic track ‘Rockin’ In The Free World.’ When Foo Fighters played their own set, Grohl told the audience “Feels good to be here.” John Legend made a “surprise appearance,” playing John Lennon’s ‘Imagine,’ just a short way from where Lennon used to live. The concert had been deliberately scheduled to coincide with the meeting of the United Nations General Assembly in New York this month, to increase public consciousness of the presence of poverty.

Black Keys, El Camino Album Review

Since forming in 2001, American duo The Black Keys have achieved relative success on both sides of the Atlantic with their superior, lively, blues meets psychedelic rock blend; they were definitely the band that taught the indie kids how to dance and this strength continues throughout their latest full length release, El Camino.

'Lonely Boy' opens the album with a determined and confident scuzzy fuzzy guitar riff, soon flanked by drums and synths, that launches into the trademark strong and soulful indie blues blend that we've come to expect from this duo. Infectious, soulful and sing-along with a catchy hook powering throughout; 'Lonely Boy' is an upbeat and fresh opening to this, The Black Keys' seventh album. 'Dead And Gone' stomps in with pounding snare and low bass riff soon joined by bluesy guitar and vocals, punctuated by the metallic edge of glockenspiel. The track powers forward, verse into chorus and onwards, intercepted by a guitar solo. The on the beat thrust of edgy guitar chord is almost reminiscent of The Clash's 'London Calling' but instead of an arrogant, anarchic kick, The Black Keys have a spritely likeable infectious confident strut.

Continue reading: Black Keys, El Camino Album Review

The Black Keys, Just Got To Be Single Review

The Black Keys
Just Got To Be
Single Review

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The Black Keys, You're The One, Single Review

The Black Keys
You're The One
Single Review

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The Black Keys - Interview With Dan Auerbach

The Black Keys are two young men hailing from Akron Ohio and producing a kind of raw, dirty blues rock that would make the devil change colour. Comparisons to The White Stripes and The Kills are common place and quite unfair, so no further mention will be made of this topic. I caught up with Dan before their sell out gig at the Night & Day in Manchester, he is an amiable 21 year old who answered every question enthusiasm as though it was his first ever interview.

Q. Paul Weller recently dubbed Major Record Labels 'Scum' and added that The Jam would not have made it in this day and age as they did not have an instant hit the first two albums sold slowly. Is his a true reflection of the music industry and are you worried?
A. Yeah, it's all major label bullshit. We spoke to a few major labels, but decided not to go with them because independent labels can do the same thing. We are not worried because we are signed to an independent label (Epitaph).

Q. Is the Bass a dying species?
A. (Dan emits a wry smile at this point) I like the bass. I played bass on the album (Thickfreakness out on Epitaph records).

Continue reading: The Black Keys - Interview With Dan Auerbach

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