Bob Brainen of WFMU reviewed two NRBQ shows in April 2011:
Well, like the Q of old, there is never a bad show w/ ~this~ NRBQ. Just some shows are more inspired than others.
Friday: A band that hadn't played together in over 2 months and had 1 rehearsal.
It was a real good if loose show. As someone said: The machine is starting up.
Saturday: I expected a more together show and a more rehearsed band. What we got was one of the best, most satisfying shows to match any NRBQ show (I've seen around 100 or so, I'd guess?) Hell, to match any show by any band that I have ever seen!
Terry's voice was shot from talking on and off the phone constantly for the last 2 weeks, and he did very little singing Fri. He sounded better and sang more on Sat, but Scott, Pete, and Conrad did the lion's share of the singing. Actually, that's probably a similar % to the Q of old, with the exception that Conrad is also a real good singer. He even sang some verses.
Klem sang 2 songs and the energy went through the roof. He also blew sax, and chromatic harmonica on the beautiful Snowfall.
Tommy sat in on between a 1/3 and 1/2 of the songs and I told him afterwards that he and Conrad sounded "like a choir of drummers." That phrase just tumbled out and I'm coining it! P.J. came up and sang a song from his new album, and the magic and mystery continues with this band. How do they play sporadically at best and know and remember dozens and dozens of songs? Hell, Terry played on PJ s album. I have no idea when the others learned this song.
My friend asked me about how many songs were repeated from the night before. Keep in mind that both shows were about 5 hours of music total. I answered, "maybe 15-20%." How many songs is that, and what fraction of their entire song list is that?
There were even songs that, like the Q of old, you are hearing for the first time and can't figure out if they are new originals, standards from 80 years ago, or something somewhere in between.
Holy f*ck, I don't know how this band does it, but I have never had any doubts they were "the new NRBQ" and I can't see how anyone who witnesses this band live would feel different. Hey, it took me 3-4 shows to start to get to know the 3 strangers from late 2007 on. I've seen the band maybe 15 times and like I said on my show yesterday, after 3 or 4 shows, I felt like: "The circus is back in town!"
Bearsville is an especially cool place. It's amazing to see people dancing from, literally, little kids to seniors who look like they're in their 70's but are dancing like they are young again, and during a Q show, everyone feels young. There is no greater gift.
I pray this band gets to work more steadily. The world needs it.
The Albany Times-Union reviewed the third show of that April weekend:
" the current incarnation lived up to the legacy. They reclaimed not only the vast NRBQ catalog of songs and loose-as-a-goose sound, but also the band's wildly unpredictable spirit on stage . . . their willingness to step way out on a limb has always been one of NRBQ's most endearing qualities, and in the contemporary world of pre-packaged, cookie-cutter pop stars, it's sure great to have them back."
Terry Anderson reviewed a show in Raleigh NC a few months before:
They are now their own brand of art, their own cartoon. [The Quartet] is now a band that reminds you of why you go see bands and why you always wanted to be part of one...especially one like this.
When it was all over, people were hugging and walking around in a daze like there had been an earthquake or something. We were all asking around, checking each other's pulse, making sure everyone was alright.
Oh yeah, we were alright.
Much MORE than alright.
What about the new CD, Keep This Love Goin'?
"Not to sound all cornball, but if anything embodies the spirit of rock 'n' roll, this music does. Check it out."
"The spirit of the Q remains strong. The trademark wry humor remains, the ability to groove like no other band on the face of the planet, the ability to move from jazz-inflected rock and pop-inflected jazz and who-knows-what-else does too. Yes, Terry, please do keep this love goin'. Thanks."
"I didn't believe in miracles, but I am now sure about reincarnation. When we all thought that NRBQ had its best days behind them they make a roaring comeback with Keep This Love Goin'. Wonderfully tuneful love songs, hard driving rock 'n' roll, Terry Adams's still so inventive piano playing, one more song about zydeco-legend Boozoo Chavis and a humorous tribute to all animals. The best album so far this year."
- Mats Olsson, Expressen (Sweden)
"Adams has proven it's the passion inside a sound that matters as much as who is playing the instruments . . . Terry Adams doesn't call this new aggregation NRBQ lightly, and knows the bar is set up near the ceiling for any group using that tag. The mind flips, though, for how much fun all involved sound like they're having, and the way they take right up where the original quartet left off. When the songs are flowing and Adams and his musical buddies are rolling, they let the pride in one of America's all-time great bands fly high."
- The Morton Report
"The band sounds fresh, joyous, and energized as it certainly does keep this love of rock, and its myriad styles, goin'. One of this year's top rock releases."
- Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk, VA)
"Keep This Love Goin' not only sounds like a real NRBQ album, it may be the best one in about 20 years. The pop songs sparkle, the rockers are loose and lively, and there's plenty of freewheeling spirit . . . "
- Sound & Vision
"All the hallmarks of a classic Q album . . . the standard mix of quirky humor, unabashed romance and good ol' rock and roll good-timin' saturates Keep This Love Goin'. Chalk it up to the end of an era, but thankfully not the end of NRBQ."
"The joy that underlies every NRBQ record is present on Keep This Love Goin' and nowadays that joy comes from a real-world place."
- Providence Journal
"Happily, the new quartet has captured the eclectic mix that made the original band so intoxicating . . . [Fans] will find spontaneity, humor, breadth, and musical know-how."
- No Depression
"A super record."
- Pittsburgh Daily News
"A peachy comeback."
- Philadelphia Daily News
"Music no one can make anymore."
- Detroit Metro-Times