On this day in 2008, "Sex On Fire" debuted at number one on the UK singles chart, and now everyone hates Kings of Leon. Why?
Kings of Leon have taken a lot of (arguably well-earned) flack over the years, but criticism aside, the Nashville family quartet was modern rock's last great act.
On this day in 2008, "Sex On Fire" debuted at number one on the UK singles chart, where the band had reigned supreme long before receiving any stateside recognition. But soon that would all change. "Sex On Fire" and "Use Somebody" off Only by The Night catapulted the band to stardom. Both tracks' howling choruses and rhythmic garage rock aesthetic placed them along the other kitschy indie hits that defined 2008, such as The Killers's "Mr. Brightside" and Arctic Monkeys's "I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor."
The band was already an indie commercial darling, but Only by the Night mutated Kings of Leon into a different kind of beast. With their "whoa-oh" singalongs and sleek production, the band purposefully trimmed their garage hedges in favor of a more crisp and refined aesthetic. They had chosen to be a pop crossover hit in a deliberately calculated way.
The rock band prepares for two months of international touring in support of their new No. 1 album, Walls.
Kings of Leon have announced the dates and locations for their 2017 world arena tour in support of their new album, Walls. Their seventh album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard chart, finally becoming their first to reach the top of the chart. It features the thrilling opener, "Waste A Moment," a stadium-ready tribute to living wild and forgetting about the consequences once in awhile.
The band from Nashville, comprised of brothers Caleb (lead vocals), Nathan (drums) and Jared Followill (bass), with their cousin Matthew Followill on lead guitar, has become one of the biggest stadium rock bands in the world. They formed in 2000, after their Evangelist father's prohibition of rock music ended with his resignation from the church, and signed with RCA Records in 2001. Their second album, Aha Shake Heartbreak, brought them fame in the U.K. and led to a U.S. tour opening for U2.
Since 2009's Only By The Night, every album has broken the top ten on the Billboard 200. In 2010, their platinum hit, "Use Somebody," won Grammys for Record of the Year and Best Rock Song. With Walls already at No. 1, there's a pretty good chance it will earn even more gold and platinum sales for the Followill quartet.
Their recent performance of "Waste A Moment" on Jimmy Fallon added two supporting musicians to the lineup and showed a band ready for huge arena sound and plenty of "oo-woAH-Oh-ohhhhhhs" for the crowd to sing along with them.
Kings of Leon perform "Waste A Moment" on The Tonight Show
Tickets are on sale now! The tour starts in Maryland in January and moves to the west coast before heading to Germany in February. Let's hope they come back with lots more U.S. dates in the months after!
Full tour dates:
1/12: National Harbor – National Harbor, Maryland
1/13: TD Garden – Boston, Massachusetts
1/16: Air Canada Centre – Toronto, Ontario, Canada
1/19: Wells Fargo Center – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
1/20: Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
1/22: Fox Theatre – Detroit, Michigan
1/23: United Center – Chicago, Illinois
1/25: 1st Bank Center – Broomfield, Colorado
1/27: Bill Graham Civic Auditorium – San Francisco, California
1/28: The Forum – Los Angeles, California
2/15: Lanxess Arena – Cologne, Germany
2/16: Barclaycard Arena – Hamburg, Germany
2/19: First Direct Arena – Leeds, United Kingdom
2/20: Genting Arena – Birmingham, United Kingdom
2/24: Metro Radio Arena – Newcastle, United Kingdom
2/25: Echo Arena – Liverpool, United Kingdom
2/27: The SSE Hydro – Glasgow, United Kingdom
Alt-rock brothers stick to their guns on emotive new record.
WALLS, Kings of Leon's seventh record, is an acronym: "We Are Like Love Songs." The album itself is a love letter to casual and die-hard fans, with the band returning to the sound that made them famous back in 2008 (don't even try to pretend you don't know the lyrics to "Use Somebody").
The band, who announced a short tour in support of the album today, have mastered a wall-of-sound technique, and their music has gotten even more emotional in the process. Moody "Eyes On You" is the perfect example of this, with Caleb Followill singing "Everyone says you should get away / Fast as you can, but I know you'll stay" with an angsty, energetic fervor. The song is made more bombastic by the use of chugging guitar, and high-paced drums.
Despite aiming to keep the energy of an arena show going throughout the record ("Around the World" and bass-heavy "Find Me" come to mind), the quiet moments seem to be the strongest. "Muchacho," which comes about halfway through the record, transitions the band from high-energy to a softer guitar, and the sound of drumsticks clacking against each other. It's energetic as the rest of the tracks, but keeps everything grounded in reflection without the drama. The second half of the record is by far the best, dominated by slow, balanced tracks (the outstanding "Conversation Piece" and the electroacoustic title track, which closes the record) as much as their typical alt-rock fare ("Wild").
Riding the waves of conflict and calm, with music that feels at home in both stadiums and silences, Kings of Leon's newest record is a welcome return to form, and by far one of their best.
WALLS is out now. Watch the video for "Waste A Moment" below.