Black Keys @ KeyArena 11.01.14

November 2, 2014
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Late Saturday afternoon a handful of End listeners were invited inside KeyArena for a rare opportunity.  As the small group descended the stairs into the empty arena they were serenaded by the sounds of the Black Keys during soundcheck.  It was a bit surreal to see one of the biggest bands in the world playing in a massive, empty room.  I wandered the upper level snapping some photos in an attempt to show the enormity of the event.

Once the sound was dialed in they performed a couple of songs for a brief EndSession.  The videos will be up asap so you'll d efinitely want to check back for them!

Fast forward a couple of hours and we found British sensation Jake Bugg on the same stage opening the night for a much larger audience.  Jake put on a great show, I believe he will be one of the biggest stars in the world in the not-too-distant future.  He is a brilliant choice for an opening act for the Black Keys.

At around 9:15 The Black Keys took the stage.  Thousands were in attendance at KeyArena and more were listening 107.7 The End aired a live, commercial free simulcast. 

Photographers were given the instructions to stay on either side of the stage while shooting and to never be in the middle unless we were crossing sides in between songs.  For the first song I was in the pit I chose stage right near Patrick Carney on the drums.  Not since the last EDM show I shot have I felt that kind of bass literally penetrating my body and rattling my internal organs.  If that experience doesn't wake you up, nothing will!  It really is cool to have the drums right at the front of the stage.  It's impossible to miss the massive amount of energy he puts into his performance with the drums up front and in your face.

For the 2nd and 3rd songs I was allowed to photograph I moved over to stage left near Dan Auerbach.  Watching him jam through hit after hit you can see that "cool" oozes through every pore.  More important than being cool however, you can tell he is really enjoying himself up there.  As a result, the experience was enhanced for everyone in the room and listening on the radio and we were treated to an awesome concert!

Mat Hayward
I've posted many more photos from the show on my Facebook page:  HERE