For their farewell to the Fat Possum label, Black Keys released the six-track EP CHULAHOMA, a tribute to the late Mississippi hill-country bluesman Junior Kimbrough. While previous Keys albums made clear the Akron, Ohio, guitar-drums duo's genuine devotion to the blues, none seemed to come from the soul quite like the brief tribute to their mentor. 2006's MAGIC POTION, however, speaks from a similar place.
While the Keys still happily evoke vintage sounds from the FM dial at nearly every turn, they've scaled things back a bit in favor of a leaner and meaner attack that places the focus squarely on Dan Auerbach's fiercely ringing guitar lines, Patrick Carney's solidly funky breaks, and the interplay between the two, which is capable of ghostly nuance one minute and sledgehammer power the next (see "The Flame"). As a vocalist and guitar player, Auerbach is very much a student of the late Kimbrough, hanging on to vocal and guitar lines to squeeze as much heartache and soul from them as possible. And while one can't expect the Keys to come within knocking distance of Kimbrough's front door (no matter how many times they may have literally been inside his house), they've made a record that, like the factories of their home town, burns rubber.
- Genre: Pop
- Format: Vinyl
- Released: 09/12/2006