Review: The Black Keys, New Year’s Eve, Chicago

It didn’t take me long to decide what to do for New Year’s Eve. In fact, I didn’t really “decide” at all – I just clicked the link in the Ticketmaster email to buy Black Keys tickets as soon as it hit my inbox. It was involuntary, really. But I did voluntarily urge everyone I know to join me.

I’m not going to spend a ton of time explaining the magic that is The Black Keys. If you read Sound Citizen, you know how we feel around here already. Instead, I’m just going to point you to a few videos and simply say that it was a night that I’ll never forget. Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney are supremely talented. There’s no fancy stage setup, no pandering the audience and no bullshit. Straight-up rock and that’s the way we like it. They played nothing but the best from their catalog (no BlakRoc here) including “Have Love Will Travel,” a song quickly becoming a favorite, even though it was originally recorded by The Sonics decades ago. Check out a past article on Garage Rock’s Roots – there’s some great stuff from back in the day, including “Have Love Will Travel.”

The crowd was also excellent – fired up and extremely well-versed.

Highlight of the night: The countdown to midnight, followed by The Keys uncorking bottles of bubbly (complete with crowd-spraying) then ripping “Your Touch.” That was worth the price of admission right there. A video of it is posted below – the sound quality is not the best, but it’s a great glimpse into the fever that spread throughout the crowd.

Lowlight of the night: I could’ve used more. Perhaps due to the late start, it seems the show was not as long as it should have been. By contrast, the New Year’s Day show was five songs longer.

There is plenty more video out there, just search YouTube and sort by date uploaded. Below is a few I found. This time around, I decided to not take video. Instead, I wanted to soak it in naturally; without distraction. I’m glad I did, although I do wish I had some video to call my own. Lesson learned, I suppose. At any rate, thanks to those who did take video – we were counting on you!

Below the videos is the New Year’s Eve setlist.

Did you go to the show? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment. Go to a different NYE show? Tell us about that too!

Countdown to midnight, followed by “Your Touch.” Via lazymoon13.


“Psychotic Girl,” from New Year’s Day. Via stackshotbillie.


The Black Keys setlist, 12/31/2009:

1. Thickfreakness
2. Girl is on My Mind
3. Set You Free
4. Stack Shot Billy
5. Same Old Thing
6. Strange Times
7. Your Touch
8. Psychotic Girl
9. Have Love Will Travel


10. 10 A.M. Automatic
11. Till I Get My Way