The Black Keys Turn Blue never sounds incoherent. That's partly because the songs are drawn together by the album's ongoing lyrical preoccupations: perhaps understandably, given that it was written in the wake of Auerbach's messy divorce, there are enough recriminatory warnings about the vagaries of romance here to last a lifetime. But it's mostly because Turn Blue never stops sounding like the Black Keys. However the songs are embellished, however radio-friendly the choruses or stadium-sized the dynamics, the tight-knit relationship between Auerbach's guitar and Carney's breakbeat-heavy drumming is always at their centre. The result is polished and commercial, without feeling craven or compromised, an impressive stunt to pull off. It's easy to feel puzzled by the Black Keys' advance to arena-filling status: flashier, more media-savvy bands have attracted more headlines over the years, so Auerbach and Carney's slow, gradual ascent can make you think of Peter Cook's line about David Frost rising without trace, compounded by the fact that the duo have a tendency to feign a degree of incomprehension about their success in interviews. For anyone still wondering, Turn Blue provides the answers: on the evidence presented here, Jack White looks set to be haunted by "that asshole" for the foreseeable future. g Turn Blue [VINYL] El Camino Brothers Rubber Factory Chulahoma Thickfreakness Attack and Release