Kings of Leon’s fans — who include Taylor Swift and Cara Delevingne — were thrilled to hear that the group would be releasing WALLS on Oct. 14, but they’ll be even more delighted once they hear what Kings of Leon has to offer on their seventh album. Check out our review right here!
After a band releases an album that delivers instant classics like “Use Somebody” and “Sex On Fire,” it’s hard for even that group to top their own tunes. That’s the challenge that Kings of Leon created for themselves after 2008’s Only By The Night, setting the bar high for future endeavors. Even the band members admitted that they lost touch of their musical forte as they continued to release music in the years after that, which ultimately resulted in increasing delays in putting out albums (and even a hiatus in 2011). But during their most recent gap between albums, the band took time to find the magic they delivered eight years ago, and they certainly did so — but with the knowledge and maturity of the men they’ve become.
The “we’re back” declaration began with “Waste A Moment,” the first single from WALLS that’s reminiscent of the stadium-filling power Kings of Leon brought with their biggest tracks. That same feel continues throughout the next three songs on the album (“Reverend,” “Around The World,” and “Find Me”), but with enough variety in the rhythm and vocal range that Kings avoids sounding like mainstream sellouts and more the skillful musicians they are.
There’s still a tinge of the classic Kings vibe within the rest of WALLS, with haunting guitar riffs on tracks like “Wild” and “Over.” The group always manages to maintain the Southern rock edge their Nashville roots engrained in them, though, which is especially true for “Eyes On You.” Yet they also take risks, trying out an infusion of mariachi with the cha-cha styled “Muchacho” and bringing in symphonic sounds on “Conversation Piece.” If there’s one thing WALLS as a whole tells fans, it’s that Kings of Leon knows how to push boundaries while still holding true to the rock band they’ve been since their start 16 years ago.
While it’s not exactly typical for a rock band to close out an album with their slowest tune, finishing WALLS with the heart-wrenching balladic title track was exactly the way to top off such a masterful collection of music. “Walls” completes the album in a beautiful way melodically, but also lyrically, displaying their growth as a group and as men over the years. Fortunately for Taylor, Cara, and the rest of the Kings of Leon fans in the world, the walls have come down for the band — and they aren’t going back up anytime soon.
HollywoodLifers, what do you think of WALLS? What’s your favorite song? Tell us below!