Kings of Leon
Mechanical Bull (Deluxe Edition) Album Review
Released September 24, 2013
Genre: Alternative Rock, Southern Rock
I’m going to be completely honest here. I love rock. The distorted chords, menacing hooks, bombastic drums, grooving bass, squealing guitar solos, drum fills and the volume turned up to 11. I love how when a band has so much control over their sound that whatever they make is pure genius. They have perfect insight on what to bring and what to abandon, what to sing about and what styles to tackle. When it all comes together, it’s pure bliss and it just…rocks. All of these reasons embody the reasons why Mechanical Bull pays off.
Grammy Award Winning Southern Rock outfit Kings of Leon, smoothly come back with their sixth studio LP, Mechanical Bull. The band is known for its blend of southern rock with alternative rock, giving it a nice twist on the genre. On Mechanical Bull, they further show their dexterity with the style. The album flows with melodic chords, catchy hooks and relentless drumming that blast throughout the 42 min album. Each track overflows with exuberance, heart, and jovial ease. On this LP, Kings of Leon celebrate and capitulate the joys and emotion of youth in the most energetic way they possibly can.
The album opens up with the first single off of this LP, “Supersoaker”, which has a groovy bass line, melodic riffs, and dynamic blasts from drummer Nathan Followill all while lead singer Caleb Followill belts out “I don’t mind sentimental girls at times…” in his whiskey soaked voice. “Rock City” bursts with bluesy, southern rock riffs and is a little slowed down but makes up for it by its drive, groove and again the riffs. ” Don’t Matter” has tons of riffs to fill a packed arena and an amazing, energetic drive to get anyone moving.
“Beautiful War” is a slowed down tremendously but it allows us to breathe on this packed LP, it does however get a little redundant in the 5 minutes it consumes. “Temple” sounds a lot like The Strokes, if they had lived in Tennessee and drank whiskey while growing long beards. It is filled with lyricism about youth and risk and accompanies the energetic instrumentation very well, energetic like a teenager. Again, youth is a great theme on this LP.
“Wait For Me” is a great ballad where Caleb begs to be heard with melodic passion and conviction as reverberated guitars ring throughout and with this one you won’t mind it being slow, its beautiful. “Family Tree” revisits Southern Rock roots with a great bass line and pulsating, breezy drive. Other tracks like “Tonight” and “Coming Back Again” truly show the fun, youthful swagger that they have pulled off here. Well done Followills.
I was pretty content with this album. But if there’s one thing that I have to nick about, it’s the lack of any catchy tracks like their past hits (“Sex On Fire” and “Use Somebody”). Also towards the album’s end with tracks like “On The Chin” and “Last Mile Home”, the band’s energy begins to die, as if they used it all up and are now slowing down, not providing any worthwhile or fun closure to the album. The lyrics too aren’t really engaging or ambitious but more narrative, ” I was running through the dessert, I was looking for love” Caleb sings, but that’s as adventurous as it gets as he sings about the woman of Rock City even bragging about her validity and refuting any fabrication of his claim, “Everybody’s seen her, everyone believes me”.
However the band makes up for that with their melodic chords, energetic drumming, groovy bass lines and tireless energy ( I mean vigorous, dynamic energy) that really keeps the album going throughout its forty two minutes. In addition, stylistically the album is a bit predictable but in all honesty, its too fun to even care.
Kings of Leon really outdo themselves here, it’s strong, cohesive, focused and mature but still shines with passionate youth and energy. If there’s any album to listen to to get hyped, it’s this one. Once I get my hands on this album physically, the volume is going up to 11. That I guarantee you.
PRETTY NEAT MUSIC
FAV TRACKS: Supersoaker, Don’t Matter, Temple, Wait For Me, Coming Back Again
LEAST FAV TRACKS: On The Chin, Last Mile Home