Saturday, July 21, 2012


Bibliographic Information: Auerbach, D., & Carney, P.  (2010).  Brothers [Audio CD]. The Black Keys & Neil, M.  Alabama: Muscled Shoals Sound Studio 

Plot Summary: Brothers is heavily driven by themes of love, heartbreak, and finding the right person. Each track tells a different story that is accompanied by guitar rifts and a deep blues inspired singing voice.

Critical Evaluation: A recurring motif in this album is the presence of "the girl," or the unattainable object love. Many songs are centered around this image of this "girl' that either spurns, entrances, lifts up, or breaks down those that love her. This can be seen in songs like Everlasting Light, Next Girl, Howling for You, Tighten Up, and Never Gonna to Give You Up (to name a few).

This reoccurring motif of love as both a destructive and thrilling force is only further emphasized by the blues-rock infusions that are threaded throughout every track. Not only do the lyrics reflect the subject's complex feelings towards love and everything connected to it, but also the blues infused rhythms that drip a mixture of deep sadness and reflection. Overall, the topic of love, or "the girl," is a complex component of life that is carefully carved into many songs on the Brothers album.  

Tighten Up
by The Black Keys

Reader’s Annotation: This album tells love stories that are framed by blues influences and rocking guitar rifts. 
Information About the Band: The Black Keys is made up of two members, Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney (Amazon, 2012). Both grew up in Akron, Ohio and joined together in 2002 to release their debut album, The Big Come Up (Amazon, 2012). The Black Keys have recorded most of their albums in Alabama at the Muscle Shoals Studio (Amazon, 2012). Auerbach and Carney named their album Brothers to represent their solidarity through the good and bad times they have experienced together which have only made their duo stronger (Amazon, 2012).

Some other records by The Black Keys: Thickfreakness (2002),  Rubber Factory (2004), Chulahoma (2006), Attack and Release (2008), and El Camino (2011)
(Amazon, 2012).

Alternative, Blues-Rock 

Curriculum Ties: Could be used in a section on music appreciation and history.

Booktalking Ideas:

1). What does this album show about the relationship between blues and rocks?
2). How's does blues handle the theme of love?

Reading Level/Interest Age: 15+

Challenge Issues: Some mature themes such as sex and relationships. I would use the following items to defend this CD if it was challenged:

1) Refer to Library Bill of Rights, see items: I, II, and III (
2) Refer to San Diego Public Library collection policy - (  Original site: The American Library Association (ALA) Freedom to Read/View Statement (
3) Refer to California School Library Association (CSLA), Model School Library Standards - September 2010 ( PDF: (
4) Refer t0 American Association for School, Librarians Standards for the 21st Century Learner (
5) Contact Office of Intellectual Freedom for any further support, 800-545-2433, ext. 4223 or
6) Refer to legitimate book reviews, such as: School Library Journal, Booklist, Kirkus Reviews, Horn Book and others; found on either Academic Search Premier, Follett's TITLEWAVE, or

Why did you include this CD in the titles you selected?:
I included this CD in my collection because it offers students a different style of music. This band is currently very popular with the teen scene due to its alternative rock feel and lyrics.

Reference Page:  (2012).  The black keys.  Retrieved July 21, 2012 from

The Black  Keys.  (2010).  The black keys cover art.  Retrieved July 21, 2012

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