In advance of their forthcoming studio album, Dropout Boogie, the Black Keys have dropped the neo-soul banger “It Ain’t Over,” marking the second glimpse of the record following the March release of lead single “Wild Child.”
Dropout Boogie, out May 13 on Nonesuch Records, marks the blues rock duo’s eleventh studio album — and, in a weird twist of fate, the record will be released one day before the twentieth anniversary of the group’s first full-length, The Big Come Up. “Watching bands come and go, it’s fucking insane that we’re still here. It blows my mind,” guitarist and vocalist guitarist and vocalist Dan Auerbach said in a recent interview with Rolling Stone. “The odds were so stacked against us. I can’t imagine if this was a five-person band. That would have been insanity. We’re so lucky it’s just the two of us.”
According to the band, “It Ain’t Over,” was born from a series of drum loops and patterns created by drummer Patrick Carney. “Pat used to be self-deprecating, I don’t know why,” said Auerbach of his bandmate’s drumming prowess. “But now he just seems so much more comfortable being himself behind the drums. It’s age or, I don’t know, a lot of therapy.”
Dropout Boogie features appearances from a wide range of collaborators, including Reigning Sound frontman Greg Cartwright, bluegrass-Americana singer Sierra Ferrell and ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, who is a longtime friend of the group. “We approach every record as if it were a full band, I guess,” Carney said of the creative process behind the album. “A band that’s a duo, like Steely Dan or whatever.”
The Black Keys will embark upon an expansive tour of North America — their first in three years — in support of Dropout Boogie, alongside Band of Horses, who will open for the group on all dates. Additional support will be provided by Ceramic Animal, Early James, and the Velveteers on select dates. The tour, which includes a stop at Memphis’ Mempho Music Festival, kicks off July 9 in Las Vegas before wrapping Oct. 18 in Dallas.