- 12 Feb 19
Texan Heads To Music City For A Spit N’ Polish
Dan Auerbach is a man who knows how to make things sound good, he could be the Jeff Lynne of indie rock. He’s done it for his own records with the Black Keys, his underrated solo album Waiting On A Song, Dr John, The Pretenders, and even Lana Del Ray. And now he’s polished the rough edges off the Texan, by way of Seattle, arse kickers that are Night Beats.
If you’ve come here expecting something like the Roky Erickson recalling trash of ‘The Seven Poison Wonders’ from 2013’s Sonic Boom, or the ‘Waiting For The Man’-isms of ‘No Cops’ from Who Sold My Generation (2016), then you’re out of luck. What you get instead are the polished noir of ‘Her Cold Cold Heart’ which carries a hint of Alex Turner in The Last Shadow Puppets, and the blues rock thrill of ‘One Thing’ which doesn’t sound a million miles away from latter day Black Keys. What might be even more surprising is the classic pop of ‘(Am I Just) Wasting My Time’ and ‘Too Young To Pray’, neither of which wouldn’t sound out of place on a brill building compilation.
The tight riff of ‘Eyes On Me’ has a bit of the old dirt under its fingernails but it’s outnumbered by gentler fare like ‘I Wonder’ with its chorus carried by a Spanish guitar, or ‘Let Me Guess’ which could be an outtake from one of those great Little Steven records that no one’s ever heard.
Working with Auerbach, and the crack team of Nashville sessioners he put together to help out, on what is a solo record in all but name, has been a good move for main man Danny Lee Blackwell, allowing his songwriting to shine where before it was buried. Good, Man.