The Black Keys have released It Ain't Over, the second single from their upcoming 11th studio album, Dropout Boogie.
Written by guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney in tandem with Reigning Sound's Greg Cartwright, the track follows the LP's first single – the bouncy, groove-driven Wild Child – and features a markedly more soulful and relaxed feel and arrangement.
Driven throughout by a brooding bassline over Carney's mid-tempo stick work, It Ain't Over expands in the choruses with expansive synth swells, and features occasional pockets of blues guitar magic, including a fuzz-bathed passage at the 2:10 mark and some loose-time licks from 3:06. Check it out below.
Dropout Boogie is set to arrive via Nonesuch Records on May 13, one day before the 20th anniversary of the band's debut LP, The Big Come Up. It follows last year's Delta Kream, a covers album in which Auerbach and Carney offer new renditions of classics by R. L. Burnside, John Lee Hooker, Big Joe Williams and more.
Featuring contributions from ZZ Top's Billy F Gibbons and Kings of Leon collaborator Angelo Petraglia, the album is notable for using a number of first takes, a decision taken to hark back to the “stripped-down blues rock of The Black Keys' early days making music together in Akron, Ohio basements”.
“That's always been the beauty of the thing Pat and I do,” Auerbach explains. “It's instant. We've never really had to work at it. Whenever we'd get together, we'd just make music. We didn't know what we were going to do, but we'd just do it and it would sound cool.
“It's the natural chemistry Pat and I have. Being in a band this long is a testament to that. It was a real gift that we were given. I mean, the odds of being plopped down a block and a half from each other in Akron, Ohio – it just seems crazy.”
The band are set to support Dropout Boogie on a 32-date North America tour – their first in three years – kicking off in July. The run will make stops in Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia and more, before wrapping in Dallas, Texas on October 18.
Supporting artists include Band of Horses – who will appear at all dates – and Ceramic Animal, Early James and The Velveteers, who will all open at select dates only.