Don't be fooled by their move to Nonesuch Records: The Black Keys
are still the spare, muddy, riff-heavy blues duo they always were. On the recent Magic Potion
, singer/guitarist Dan Auerbach sounds both world-weary and road-wizened. The entrancing "Goodbye Babylon" shimmers in a dirty haze, as Auerbach gives a kiss-off to the temptations and false idols of his past. Credit drummer/producer Patrick Carney for the open, reverberating tone of Potion
, which feels intimate amid the sparseness. "Sparse" isn't in the vocabulary of Philly's Dr. Dog
, who cram as many vocal harmonies, sleigh bells and piano twinkles into songs as the tape machine will allow. Their newest EP, Takers and Leavers
, features sun-stroked, shambling pop sung through a cloud of pungent smoke and lost weekends.