The Black Keys’ Record Store Day Surprise 2010

This past Saturday April 17th, 2010, marked the 3rd annual independent record store celebration known as “Record Store Day”. The Black Keys continued their streak of yearly participation and support with another great vinyl offering.

Back in 2008 (for the 1st annual Record Store Day), the ‘Keys put out a 7” single featuring “Strange Times” and the unreleased track “Something On Your Mind”. In 2009, they did a split 7” record on sea-green colored vinyl featuring The Flaming Lips covering Madonna’s “Borderline”, and The Black Keys with a larger-than-life version of Captain Beefheart’s “Her Eyes Are A Blue Million Miles”.

For Record Store Day 2010 the ‘Keys put out a limited (50,000 units) 12” single featuring two tracks from their upcoming (Brothers) album – the Gary-Glitter-esque “Howlin’ For You” and the Danger-Mouse-produced “Tighten Up”. Only this year, Dan & Pat decided to up the ante.

On the morning of this year’s Record Store Day at 8:21am (Akron time), The Black Keys posted a somewhat-cryptic update on their Facebook page which stated- “It’s record store day. Go buy some stuff. We have a new 12″ single out today and there is a surprise inside.” Later that morning, fan responses to their Facebook post seemed to indicate the surprise was a hoax – however, if one looked closely enough at the “dead wax” on each side of the record, the words “DEVO / THE BLACK KEYS” could be seen etched on the record, followed by an email address AKRONSPLIT7@WARNERBROSRECORDS.COM

The dead wax etching:

As it turned out, the first 200 fans to send an email to the address etched into the vinyl would receive an extremely limited free/bonus 7” split in the mail featuring Devo’s “Human Rocket” from their upcoming album, and the Black Keys track “Ohio” (a Brothers bonus track, available on/after May 18th exclusively through iTunes).

Within an hour of sending an email to the address on the record, I received a reply from Warner Bros with a link/code/instructions to claim my prize, as well as the following message:

Hello Lucky Fan!
Thanks for checkin’ the dead wax on either the Devo or The Black Keys spiffy Record Store Day 12″!!!!  Well, at least we hope you did.
Anyways, congrats on being one of 200 super fans to receive an incredibly limited Akron Split 7″ featuring Devo’s “Human Rocket” and The Black Keys’ “Ohio.”  These will not be for sale so please don’t ebay it…after all, the price will just keep going up!!!!! Happy listening.

So if you were lucky enough to be one of the first 200 to find the hidden message, congrats! Luckily (thanks for the guidance, Brandy) I made the cut and am anxiously waiting for my bonus record to arrive.

An update with more pics will follow once the 7″ is delivered. Until then happy listening,  indeed.

Tighten Up / Howling For You 12″ Vinyl cover art: