Monday, 16 September 2013

Kings of Leon // Mechanical Bull - Review

A confident Caleb and co make the world a better place, and that they have. The new album instantly connects with classic fans with the very first three tracks. Everyone has spent weeks deciphering "Supersoaker" and why on earth he threw "sentimental" in a chorus. Because they're the kings, duh.

Now, "Don't Matter" is an absolute stomper of a song and will go down very well live. The repetitive rocky chord structure is an example of how to pull it off, versus Arctic Monkey's "I Want It All". Two different styles, but they share this similarity. The solos fly about and fun is definitely being had once more, since the breakup on tour.

"Beautiful War" is, well, beautiful. It builds, and builds with steady drums and guitar lines ringing left and right. The chorus doesn't explode, it instead blends in majestically. Musically, this album is more advanced in composition and structure. They said it, and they meant it. Structures are easy to find on their albums, but this one throws in a bit of creativity in that respect. Well played.

Perhaps naming a track "Rock City" is a bit arrogant, as well as irking a certain (Sir) Dave Grohl, but the lyric "I can shake like a woman" is most certainly screaming out to the world that the Kings are back. "Wait For Me" reveals them revelling in a new territory: have they gone... whisper it, indie? Well no, they are above that, as the album shows.

They're at their best. The first half of the album alone is enough to award top marks for this album. But it would be unfair to not talk about songs like "Family Tree", that revels in it's looseness like Pete Doherty with an XXL shirt. Bluesy, often clich├ęd Americana spills onto the album as a sudden very much witnessed car crash. "Woo" indeed, Caleb. This will be an anthem of the year, or at the least, their gigs and fandom.

Forget your preconceptions of KOL, and listen to this album with a fresh insight. Maybe the album is a bit safe, and yes I know that contradicts my "confident" statement earlier, but within their bigger boundaries, this is a bit safe.

It's as if the last two albums didn't happen. Commercialism has been kicked out, but the good vibrations and productions are here to stay.


H x

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