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Musical Pairings: The Black Keys – Thickfreakness (paired with pasta with wild mushrooms, peas and bacon)

The pasta with wild mushrooms, peas and bacon that Kasey and I threw together last week was pure comfort food at its best. A medley of my favorite ingredients including quality apple-smoked bacon, wild mushrooms, fresh peas from our farmer’s market and yummy Al Dente pasta was a sure hit on a day when I was feeling weary. And we must have done something right because after dinner, I was feeling great. Likewise, Akron, Ohio’s the Black Keys must be doing something right. After all, Thom Yorke from Radiohead had this to say about the band in a recent interview with Pitchfork: “There are bands I look up to. Like I look up to the Black Keys.” Although I wouldn’t try to speculate why the Radiohead front man looks up to this relatively low-key Ohio two-piece, it is easy to see why he would love their music: their rootsy, minimalistic brand of blues-rock is rustic warming, comforting, and if you are like me – just makes you feel good, just like today’s recipe.

The Black Keys consists of singer/guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney. Auerbach’s rustic, weathered-bluesman vocals and fuzzy, grimy guitar riffs pair perfectly with Carney’s primal, on top of it drumming. On their debut record, The Big Come Up, the Black Keys debuted Carney’s own “medium-fidelity” recording process which they crafted using “equal parts broke-ass shit to equal parts hot-ass shit.” On their sophomore release, Thickfreakness, the Black Keys didn’t stray far from this winning recipe. Instead, they just focused on writing even better songs and catchier melodies. This is a band that doesn’t have a bad album in their catalog, and yet many of the songs on Thickfreakness still stand out as some of the band’s best, especially “Hard Row,” “Midnight In Her Eyes,” and “Have Love Will Travel.” If you haven’t had the time to check out the Black Keys before, this would be a great place to start. You really should head over to Insound and pick up a copy of this album on wax.

The Black Keys – Midnight In Her Eyes
The Black Keys – Goin’ Down South (RL Burnside Cover)
The Black Keys – Funk #49 (James Gang Cover)

Head to the Kitchen to read the recipe for pasta with wild mushrooms, peas and bacon.

Posted by Matthew Hickey

MattNekoRecords

Matthew is the music editor and co-founder of Turntable Kitchen. He’s addicted to vinyl records, pour over coffee, craft beer, small batch bourbon, and pan roasting pork chops.

  • The Black Keys Fan Lounge

    Cool article

    I would have thought The Black Keys and a hot dog would have been a more likely pairing. Or maybe Sbarro

  • The Black Keys Fan Lounge

    Cool articleI would have thought The Black Keys and a hot dog would have been a more likely pairing. Or maybe Sbarro

  • Matthew

    Ha! Sbarro? Or a hot dog? Definitely, low-fi. Do you really like the Black Keys, or do you run the website because you are a keep-your-enemies-close type of person?

    I'm just kidding of course. You make a valid point. I suppose the best way to remain true to the Black Keys aesthetic would be to substitute frozen peas and Oscar Meyer bacon for the fresh peas and apple smoked bacon we used. That way the recipe would call for equal parts "hot ass shit" (the wild mushrooms and Al Dente pasta) and equal parts "broke ass shit" (the frozen peas and Oscar Meyer bacon).

    By the way, great site! Do you have any recommendations for some great unreleased tracks I should check out?

  • Matthew

    Ha! Sbarro? Or a hot dog? Definitely, low-fi. Do you really like the Black Keys, or do you run the website because you are a keep-your-enemies-close type of person? I'm just kidding of course. You make a valid point. I suppose the best way to remain true to the Black Keys aesthetic would be to substitute frozen peas and Oscar Meyer bacon for the fresh peas and apple smoked bacon we used. That way the recipe would call for equal parts "hot ass shit" (the wild mushrooms and Al Dente pasta) and equal parts "broke ass shit" (the frozen peas and Oscar Meyer bacon). By the way, great site! Do you have any recommendations for some great unreleased tracks I should check out?

  • The Black Keys Fan Lounge

    Well, I hope they're not enemies, and I do run the site.
    When I interviewed Pat for the site I confirmed Dan's favourite hot dog was with sauerkraut and mustard when in NYC.
    Pat also mentioned they looked like managers from Sbarro so girls weren't that interested in them.

  • The Black Keys Fan Lounge

    Well, I hope they're not enemies, and I do run the site.When I interviewed Pat for the site I confirmed Dan's favourite hot dog was with sauerkraut and mustard when in NYC.Pat also mentioned they looked like managers from Sbarro so girls weren't that interested in them.

  • Matthew

    Ha, I like the anecdote about them looking like managers from Sbarro ;) I've been spending time reading through the articles on your site since your first comment by the way. Keep up the great work!

  • Matthew

    Ha, I like the anecdote about them looking like managers from Sbarro ;) I've been spending time reading through the articles on your site since your first comment by the way. Keep up the great work!

  • Squanto

    Where did you find the covers may I ask, very good but I haven't heard about them before?

  • Squanto

    Where did you find the covers may I ask, very good but I haven't heard about them before?

  • Matthew

    Hey Squanto,

    I wish I could say where I'd found them, but I honestly can't recall. Many of my MP3s I find in music forums (such as atease or americanmary), archive.org, dimeadozen, other music blogs, and in some cases they come straight from the band or one of their representatives (which was not the case here).

  • Matthew

    Hey Squanto,I wish I could say where I'd found them, but I honestly can't recall. Many of my MP3s I find in music forums (such as atease or americanmary), archive.org, dimeadozen, other music blogs, and in some cases they come straight from the band or one of their representatives (which was not the case here).

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