The Arcs, Mariachi Flor de Toloache | The Vic | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

The Arcs, Mariachi Flor de Toloache Recommended 18+ Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Image

When: Dec. 2-3, 8 p.m. 2015

For his new collaborative project Dan Auerbach doesn’t travel far from the path of his main band, the Black Keys. His voice—both as a singer and aesthetic force—dominates the Arcs’ debut, Yours, Dreamily (Nonesuch), where he’s joined by an assortment of musicians who either tour as a member of the Keys (like bassist Richard Swift) or pursue iterations of postmodern old-school soul (like Sharon Jones’s drummer Homer Steinweiss and multi-instrumentalist Leon Michels of neosoul production crew Truth & Soul). On Yours Auerbach luxuriates in an instrumental setting that’s more lush than what he’s developed elsewhere, to say nothing of the hip-hop and psychedelic production flourishes. While his confessional lyrics are utterly forgettable, the melodies and arrangements are impressive: fuzzed-out guitar leads snake through loping grooves during the dubbed-out throb of “Everything You Do (You Do for You)” and the lilting psych-soul of “Stay in My Corner,” with Auerbach affecting a creamy Curtis Mayfield falsetto on the latter. Yet despite the fact that the Arcs are a band and not a group of session musicians, the record still feels like a studio project without much shelf life—it sounds great, but it doesn’t seem built for the ages.

Peter Margasak

Price: $38.50

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