Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach is a busy man as of late, which seems to be a good thing. Auerbach co-wrote and produced several songs off Grace Potter and the Nocturnals upcoming album The Lion the Beast the Beat, which will be out this June. Our first taste of his influence comes with “Never Go Back,” a song that Auerbach co-wrote with Potter in just one short hour (not sure if I’m impressed or disappointed). Check out Rolling Stones’ exclusive premiere here.
Is the new Grace Potter and the Nocturnals album infectiously catchy pop rock gold, or merely stacked with radio friendly tunes bound for a Grey’s Anatomy soundtrack? This is the question that has been plaguing me since I gave their newest album a listen and the truth most likely lies somewhere in between the two extremes. The self titled album comes across extremely polished and ready for the billboard charts, complete with a glam shot of the band on the cover and songs that not only rock but have you singing along in no time. Potter has some serious vocal prowess and a band behind her that can really rock, which never hurts. Songs like “Medicine”, “Paris (Oh La La)” and “Only Love” will make a believer out of you with their gritty vocals and lead guitar riffs, but watch out for the pitfalls along the way. Songs like “Tiny Light,” “Colors” and “That Phone” leave you questioning if this album will stand the test of time or be relegated to the “I haven’t played it since that first listen” pile. All and all there really isn’t anything wrong with the album, in fact there are plenty of songs that would be easy crowd pleasers that don’t rock the boat, but is that really what you want out of a rock album?
Bottom line: a good album with some stand out tunes and more than enough talent to make them respectable but nothing particularly special.