Lead singer Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney of The Black Keys took to the Rishon Lezion Live Park stage on Monday night with intense energy and spirit for their first show in Israel.
“Tel Aviv, how you doing?” asked Auerbach as he came onstage. “Thank you so much for hanging out with us this evening. It’s so incredible to be here for our first time.”
The audience in the Rishon Lezion amphitheater — sorry Dan, it’s not exactly Tel Aviv — was thrilled to greet them. This was a crowd of Israeli rock ‘n roll fans, sipping their beers and whistling loudly for Auerbach and Carney, raising their hands and cellphones, and dancing throughout the show.
And while not all 15,000 spots at the outdoor venue were filled for this inaugural Israel performance by the Nashville, Tennessee-based band, those present knew nearly every word of each song throughout the 90-minute show.
Even audience members less familiar with The Black Keys and their garage rock sound could boogie down to Auerbach and Carney’s tunes, inspired by the blues and other rock classics. There are notes of David Bowie, country, and honkey tonk, too, that have crept into their repertoire.
It was a song list that pleased fans, starting off with “I Got Mine,” “Gold on the Ceiling,” “Your Touch” and “Your Team is Looking Good,” swinging soon into “Crawling King Snake, “Have Love Will Travel,” “Everlasting Light” and “Next Girl.
They also played “Fever,” “Weight of Love,” “Heavy Soul,” some honky tonk licks in “Lo/Hi,” and a few songs later the concert ended with “Wild Child” and”She’s Long Gone” with encores of “Little Black Submarines” and “Lonely Boy.”
“We’re honored that you guys came out to hang out with us,” repeated Auerbach several times. Carney stayed quiet, making all the noise he wanted with his drums, front and center on stage.
The Israel performance was the last for The Black Keys on their European tour.
The show opened with the folk-funk rock from local band Boom Pam, followed by Ninet Tayeb, belting out each and every song of her short set.
But the crowd was waiting for The Black Keys, and now that Auerbach and Carney have gotten a taste of their Israeli fandom, maybe they’ll be back next year.
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