Michelle Branch had some advice for The Black Keys when it came to their upcoming album, Dropout Boogie.
In an interview with Billboard, drummer Patrick Carney, who's married to Branch, reveals what the "All You Wanted" artist thought of the record when she first heard it.
"I played the record for [Branch] in its original sequence," Carney recalls. "And she was like, 'If you want my honest opinion, I would take these couple songs off, they don't really flow.'"
Carney and frontman Dan Auerbach ended up doing just that, turning Dropout Boogie into a tight collection of 10 songs.
Leading off that sequence is lead single "Wild Child," which also received some outside input. The often insular duo ended up recruiting Greg Cartwright of the band Reigning Sound, and frequent Kings of Leon collaborator Angelo Petraglia, to co-write the song.
"Now we're comfortable enough with ourselves that we can open up to people like [Cartwright and Petraglia]," Auerbach says. "We didn't used to feel like we could do that."
Meanwhile, the dynamic between Carney and Auerbach, the drummer says, is at Brothers levels.
"[Dropout Boogie] is just us feeling for the first time in a while, maybe since Brothers, really being in the groove together," Carney says. "To the point where we've been continuing to record even after this record is done, we've been in the studio working."
Dropout Boogie will be released May 13. The Black Keys will launch a U.S. tour in support of the album in July.