The Black Keys Slam Michael Jackson Album 'Xscape'

Patrick Carney says LA Reid "needed a new boat" after release of unheard MJ tunes.

Ultimate Guitar

The Black Keys' Patrick Carney doesn't approve of the posthumous Michael Jackson album "Xscape" - in fact, he's called it "f--king bullsh-t."

"Xscape" was released on May 13, the same day as the Black Keys' new LP "Turn Blue," and Carney is extremely sceptical about the nature of its release. Speaking to Rolling Stone (via Gigwise), the drummer stormed: "[It's] some f--king bullsh-t that sucks so bad that it took them three years after he died to make it listenable ... Like he had to be dead for three years for it to be released."

Carney then specifically turned his attention to Epic Records boss LA Reid, who helmed the project, saying "Xscape" has only been released because the record executive "needed a new boat."

Carney isn't the only person to express his disapproval of "Xscape" - Michael Jackson's brother Jermaine recently said he thought his family should have been more involved in the project, whilst Michael's nephew TJ previously told the Sun he had "mixed emotions" about the record.

"Xscape" features 8 unreleased tracks from Jackson's extensive archive that have been reworked by producers Timbaland, Stargate and Rodney Jerkins. The LP features "Chicago" and the Justin Timberlake-assisted "Love Never Felt So Good."

106 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Y'know, as good as their stuff is, it's getting increasingly difficult for me to listen to the Black Keys because when I do, all I can think about is how much they hate everyone that isn't them.
    It's always Patrick Carney running his mouth, I like Dan Auerbach but Carney ruins it for me.
    These guys used to make some bare bones bluesy rock music that was good. Their new album is not that at all. Too much synth and other bullshit going on. And they always seem to be complaining about something...
    I like the black key's music but I find they're kinda douchey in interviews.
    It's not even so much that they're douchey, it's that these "slams" on other artists are so unwarranted. It's like, why do you even need to say anything? Who cares?
    Any post mortem work is a piece of cash grabbing bullshnitzell. From what I've heard MJ is quite the perfectionist and I bet there will be stuff in it he wouldn't like. Still not as horrible as when they mixed 2Pac and Biggie on one song though.
    Has this guy EVER said anything positive? I'm not having a go at him but every article seems to be this guy having a sook about another artist
    I watched their interview with Colbert, and this dude is the most awkward man I've ever seen. At one point, Colbert starts making fun of him because of the awkward silence. Fuck this guy
    More and more the black keys come across as the nerds who just want to be cool.
    First time I listened to Black Keys i'd imagine them to be like people with a beard. You know? Like Lemmy. Unfortunately, they come out as frail hipsters that look like they survived a famine.
    Screw them. Hipster rubbish.
    I think you're missing the point. Regardless of whether or not you like their music, The Black Keys hit the nail on the head. The point is not that they're better than Michael Jackson but that Xscape is a piece of shit cash grab purely designed to line the executives' pockets and I for one agree completely. And how exactly are The Black Keys "hipster rubbish"? Do you even know what a hipster is, or what constitutes hipster music?
    Let's get real here. They are only pissed off because MJ's album took the spotlight away from them, because like everything else with this band, if it isn't about them, then it's "shit". If the album had been released next month instead of the same day as their album, we wouldn't have heard a word about it.
    Fair, but The Black Keys' ego issues don't make the fundamental point any less valid. Maybe they are coming out and saying it for the wrong reasons but every word of it is true nonetheless.
    I don't really believe that. As much as the Micheal album is talked a bout, they still outsold Micheal on the Itunes charts and the Billboard will most likely show the same. Its not a bout them saying that they are better, because they aren't saying that at all. All they are saying is that it was all a bout the money with this release, not a bout Micheals legacy. Im a Micheal fan but have to agree this is a WEAK release.
    They got famous for ripping off blues riffs and putting a hipster spin on it. I'll agree than Dan is a good guitar player, but it is hipster rubbish.
    Dude, they're a blues band. You could argue that every blues musician since Robert Johnson got famous for ripping off the blues and putting a spin on it but in reality, The Keys just took the music they love and have been influenced by and brought it up to date. LIKE EVERY BAND EVER. Nothing hipster about it, unless synths and pop melodies are now somehow an exclusively hipster invention.
    What's hipster about them is their pretentiousness and intense ego. Just two traits commonly shared by many hipsters, which is imo mostly because of stigmas, etc.Good chance that if Dave Grohl slammed the executives everyone would dead-on agree, no discussion no nothing, because Dave is cool, unlike The Black Keys. EDIT: that last statement being my opinion, obvs.
    Led Zeppelin also became famous for "ripping off blues riffs" and no one here complains. It's part of blues tradition to copy other blues musicians. That's just part of the genre. It's like bashing ballerina's for doing pirouettes because they are copying other dancers. It's part of ballet to do those moves, just like it is part of blues to use blues riffs and licks from other great blues players. Also, the hipster label has become meaningless. It's like saying emo crap or any other generic label that means literally nothing now. It is just a way of attacking someones character without using any evidence. Being arrogant by itself does not make you a hipster, or else Lil' Wayne and Justin Bieber would be hipsters, by that definition.
    Remember that time he bashed Nickelback for being a bunch sellouts, and this was like, last year... LAWL these guys piss me off.
    I thought he bashed the world (yes, the world) for making a band like Nickelback the biggest band in the world. Shame on us for making the Black Keys one too, I guess. When will we learn?
    Great... now that the black keys released an album, patrick carney has to go and slam (haha) everything for the next few months in order to get attention. That being said I agree with him.
    Although I hate when others profit on other artists work - this guy from the Black Keys needs to shut his ****ing mouth.
    If only the world cared about what this pair of soon-to-be-forgotten hipsters has to say. If only they had 5% of his talent. At least his songs don't sound like the same song.
    I'm sorry, but the black keyes do not even compare to the greatness of the worst song ever released by MJ and "Xscape" actually sounds amazing. If I wanna hear something that sounds like bullshit I'll listen to el camino.
    If anyone in here had taken the time to read the article they would realize he isn't slamming michael Jackson. He is slamming the people who released this cd of songs that michael clearly didn't want released. Its a cash grab. Nothing more.
    Thank you and while I agree Michael Jackson is better than the Black Keys, that's hardly the basis of his criticism for this release. He's probably being all too accurate when he said it's for the record executive's "new boat"
    "some f--king bullsh-t that sucks so bad that it took them three years after he died to make it listenable ..." I think this is basically slamming because any demo by MJ is still better than anything by the black keyes ever. Any demo by MJ is listenable.
    "black keyes do not even compare to the greatness of the worst song ever released by MJ" Agreed.
    How can they keep releaing new material when the guy is dead for years now?
    They resurrected him. The studio now has a Franken-Jackson pumping out songs for new posthumous releases.
    Drummers are special!
    Even though I agree that the reasons for releasing Xscape were mostly based on money, I have no doubt in my mind that Carney is only pissed because it was released the same day as the new Black Keys album.
    He's back. Love the Keys, but he should just stop trolling. People are starting to hate his band because of that.
    Who cares what the Black Keys think? It's their opinion, but I really enjoyed the new MJ album. Wasn't impressed with the new Black Keys.
    Although I agree with Patrick, he needs to cool it with bashing everyone in the music world who's not him. It just makes him look unprofessional.
    does anyone else think that the drummer looks like he could be in the proclaimers?
    I hear a lot of slamming the new Keys album here.... Am I the only one who thinks its the best damn record they've ever put out? I can't stop listening to it
    he's just pissed that they came out the same week and will be overshadowed because people will buy it/talk about it just because it's Michael.
    I hope all of you realize that he kinda wants you to have the reactions that this is getting. He lives to **** with people and I love him for it. Someone out there will always be butt hurt.
    .Michael Jackson is Dead
    This is what I think of Michael Jackson and those of you who "love" him
    Yeah.. The Black Keys are better they can make unlistenable stuff whilst still alive... SLAM that..
    Michael Jackson is just another dead pedophile. Good riddance to him and his music
    Okay, I wasn't a fan of MJ, but why so harsh dude?
    Harsh!?!?!?!?!?! He fvcked little boys and ruined their lives forever
    What did you do, gather your information from Twitter? And you do know that UG has a built in spell-check in their comments, right? Pathetic.
    All of the above suck big ones...
    In sort honestly what he's saying is it's a obvious cash grab and more than likely an attempt to not only be a obvious cash grab but to cash in on someone's passing it's like why couldn't they release that material when he was alive? Because like the saying goes nobody cares about you till you die ...
    The Thing is they didn't take 3 years to make this album good... the songs they used were mostly good the way michael left them. they only needed minor tweaking but they decided to rework most of it anyway and you know what? it's still amazing. Jermaine is bitter they didn't ask him to work on the album. This Black KEys dude is bitter MJ is outdoing him without even having to try. yeah L.A. reid is a jerkoff but the xscape album is great despite his involvement
    This sums up what I think of Michael Jackson and those of you who "love" him
    Does anyone else notice how it's only the poor, untalented, or washed up Jacksons that say they should be " a part" of stuff like this? You never hear about Janet Jackson whining about this sort of crap. As for the black keys bitching about nonsense: Good thing they're still relatively hipster and can get away with talking out of their asses about shit they shouldn't even bother being concerned about. Besides, right now Tupac is making another post-humous album probably and laughing about this article.
    Dear lord everyone is so judgemental here. Take it at face value and it looks like Patrick is slamming MJ. He was literally making the point that this was a record released solely to make money. Patrick probably didn't work it correctly. He's not out to talk shit or say he's better than MJ, he's just saying that the record was for profit only.
    We get what he is saying. We're just tired of his loud hipster mouth. It's like his only reason to live is to criticize everything and everyone that is not The Black Keys.
    I think it's really brave that a band like the Black Keys is willing to get by on their name alone and continue putting out music that sells entirely because they used to be good.
    So the Black Keys didn't slam MJ, Patrick Carney did. Big difference.
    One more try. I don't know how to embed a video here so here is a link.
    This sums up what I think of Michael Jackson and those of you who "love" him
    Gonna have to check out the track with the JT feature. Him and MJ are two of my favorite white R&B/Pop singers.
    regardless of who's making money off of it now, Michaels art and presence in the music world should live on, and for that to happen we need something to get exited about every now and then. we need things on tv about it to win over more fans. ya'll don't know how much us MJ fans have been through over the past 20 years. it's been tough and we deserve to be able to enjoy something. there really are some great songs on this album. I promise.