Dan Auerbach

If you haven’t heard Dan Auerbach’s first solo record yet, I’ll save you the suspense: Yes. In most respects, Keep It Hid is almost indistinguishable from Auerbach’s two-man band The Black Keys. There’s no mistaking his soulful howl for anyone else’s. Yet there are differences. Keep It Hid is what the Keys might sound like if Auerbach and Patrick Carney decided to add a full band behind them. (On this tour, Austin band Hacienda is backing Auerbach). And this disc is more adventurous than the Keys, incorporating a more diverse range of folk, country, and soul influences. It moves beyond Auerbach’s penchant for O.G. blues and psychedelic stoner rock. But still, Keep It Hid succeeds for the same reason the Keys do: because Auerbach mines the best in old-timey American roots music, mushing together harmonic folk ballads, blues rhythms, Doors-like organ freakouts, and fuzzy guitar solos like so much sonic Play-Doh. Instead of the ugly mess that can result from trying to do too much on a single record, Auerbach creates a balanced sound that’s informed by nostalgia without drowning in it. SARA BRICKNER

Tue., March 10, 8 p.m., 2009

 
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