Gold on the Ceiling

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"Gold on the Ceiling"
Single by The Black Keys
from the album El Camino
Released February 25, 2012
Format Digital download
Recorded 2011 at Easy Eye Sound studio in Nashville, Tennessee
Genre Garage rock, blues rock, glam rock
Length 3:44
Label Nonesuch Records
Writer(s) Dan Auerbach, Patrick Carney, Brian Burton
Producer(s) Danger Mouse, The Black Keys
Certification Gold
The Black Keys singles chronology
"Lonely Boy"
"Gold on the Ceiling"
"Little Black Submarines"
Music video
"Gold on the Ceiling" on YouTube

"Gold on the Ceiling" is a song by American rock band The Black Keys. It is the third track from their seventh studio album, El Camino, and was released as the record's second single on February 25, 2012. The song was certified platinum in Australia and Canada.[1]

Music videos[edit]

Two videos were shot for the song. The first, directed by Reid Long, features footage from the band's concerts, as well as candid shots of them on tour.

A second music video, directed by Harmony Korine, was shot prior to the single release, but was not released until May 2012. The video features the band members wearing Baby Björns and being carried by giant doppelgängers of theirs, played by two Belmont Bruins men's basketball players.[2]


Will Hermes of Rolling Stone called the song's keyboards "a serrated organ growl backed up with a SWAT team of hand claps" and cited it as an example of Danger Mouse's prowess as a producer and co-writer. Summarizing the song, Hermes wrote, "It's Sixties bubblegum garage pop writ large, with T. Rex swagger and a guitar freakout that perfectly mirrors the lyrics, a paranoid rant that makes you shiver while you shimmy."[3] John Soeder of The Plain Dealer labeled it one of the album's finest and said that it sounded like a hybrid of Norman Greenbaum's "Spirit in the Sky" and Gary Glitter's "Rock and Roll Part 2".[4] Harley Brown of Consequence of Sound called the song "bombastic, slightly sleazy" and said that it "best sums up The Black Keys' almost unbelievably consistent musicianship and success".[5] Melissa Maerz of Entertainment Weekly said that the song, "with its swarm-of-bees organs and acid-trip gospel harmonies, could be a lost Nuggets gem".[6] Randall Roberts of the Los Angeles Times, writing about the song's retro stylings, said that it "sounds as if it's existed forever".[7] Sam Richards of NME said that the song's "brilliantly demented cowboy glam holler... is boosted by the band's new trio of female backing singers wailing for all they're worth".[8]

Use in popular media[edit]

  • "Gold on the Ceiling" was used in a prominent television advertising campaign for the 2012 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament nicknamed "Brackets Everywhere" on Turner Sports and CBS Sports networks. Along with being featured in commercials for the tournament, the song was featured during in-game coverage of the games.[9]
  • A mix of the song is also used in a 2012 United Kingdom advert for the Indian beer Cobra.[10]
  • The Sweet (with guitarist Andy Scott as the only original member) covered this song on their 2012 album New York Connection.
  • It was also released as downloadable content for the video game Rocksmith.
  • The first few seconds of the song as well as the end of the song was heard at the beginning of the NCIS season 9 episode, "The Good Son".
  • It is used in the advertisements for the TV series Veep.
  • It is featured on the video game MLB 12: The Show.
  • It is also used in the second half of the theatrical trailer for The Campaign, which stars Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis.
  • The song can be heard on an episode of Workaholics entitled, "To Kill a Chupacabra".
  • The song was also performed live at the 2012 MTV Movie Awards by the band, accompanied on guitar by Johnny Depp.[11]
  • NBC Sports has made video montages with "Gold on the Ceiling" during the 2012 Summer Olympics honoring the Olympic athletes who had won gold medals.
  • Currently, the song is the theme song for NASCAR: Race Day on SPEED.
  • The song was also used on the Suits episode "All In".
  • The song is also heard in the soccer scene of the movie Battleship.
  • The Vancouver Canucks use this song as their goal song when a player scores a goal.
  • The Nashville Predators, whose colors scheme includes gold, experimented with Gold on the Ceiling as its new goal song during the summer of 2014.[12]

Single cover[edit]

The cover art for the single features a picture of an abandoned, dilapidated building. It is actually an entrance to the former Rolling Acres Mall in Akron, Ohio.




  1. ^
  2. ^ Phillips, Amy (2012-05-31). "Watch: New Black Keys Video for "Gold on the Ceiling" Directed by Harmony Korine". Pitchfork Media. Pitchfork. Retrieved 2012-06-04. 
  3. ^ Hermes, Will (2011-12-22). "The Keys Turn Their Blues-Rock Beater into a Sleek, Shiny Muscle Car". Rolling Stone (1146/1147): 85–86. Retrieved 2012-02-03. 
  4. ^ Soeder, John (2011-12-10). "Black Keys take their 'El Camino' for a spin in the pursuit of pop: Review". Cleveland Live LLC. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  5. ^ Brown, Harley (2011-12-06). "Album Review: The Black Keys – El Camino". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  6. ^ Maerz, Melissa (2011-12-09). "El Camino (2011): The Black Keys". Entertainment Weekly (1184): 72. Retrieved 2011-12-08. 
  7. ^ Roberts, Randall (2011-12-05). "Album review: The Black Keys' ‘El Camino’". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-12-05. 
  8. ^ Richards, Sam (2011-12-02). "Album Review: The Black Keys - 'El Camino'". NME. Retrieved 2011-12-05. 
  9. ^ "Turner, CBS: ‘Brackets Everywhere’". National Collegiate Athletic Association. Turner Sports Interactive. 2012-02-29. Retrieved 2012-03-07. 
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Johnny Depp plays guitar with The Black Keys at MTV Movie Awards". 4 June 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ " – The Black Keys – Gold on the Ceiling". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  14. ^ " – The Black Keys – Gold on the Ceiling" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
  15. ^ " – The Black Keys – Gold on the Ceiling" (in French). Ultratip.
  16. ^ a b c d e "Gold on the Ceiling - The Black Keys". Billboard. Retrieved February 21, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Canadian Active Rock & Alt Rock Chart Archive: Active Rock - April 17, 2012". America's Music Charts. Retrieved April 17, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Canadian Active Rock & Alt Rock Chart Archive: Alternative Rock - March 13, 2012". America's Music Charts. Retrieved March 13, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Chart Track: Week 13, 2012". Irish Singles Chart.
  20. ^ "Artists: Black Keys". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 2012-09-06. 
  21. ^ "The Black Keys – Chart history: Adult Alternative Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved June 4, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Best of 2012 - Rock Songs 1-10". Retrieved January 16, 2013. 
  23. ^ "Best of 2012 - Alternative Songs 1-10". Retrieved January 16, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Italian single certifications – The Black Keys" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter The Black Keys in the field Filtra. The certification will load automatically