- 05 Mar 21
Return of the Kings.
Having recently announced to the world – via the unusual means of mailing exclusive t-shirts to select fans and letting the social media bushfire do the rest – the release of their eighth studio album, When You See Yourself finds Kings of Leon in robustly dependable form.
Lead single ‘The Bandit’ is a rousing indication of what is to follow, with its skipping beat and chiming guitars. Spoiled only, for this listener in any case, by the gremlin in my head that insists on singing Robert Palmer’s ‘Johnny And Mary’ over the verse section. I assure you if it attempts such subversion again it will be shot.
There’s something in the filial bond that makes for a certain cohesion. Perhaps that unspoken understanding creates a telepathic connection that allows them, in a musical sense, to avoid stepping on each other’s toes. The rhythm section of our alt-rock Brady Bunch keeps things sparsely interlocked, before next door neighbour – guitarist Matthew Followil – pops in to fill in the gaps.
The album abounds with ‘seize the moment’ imagery. From ‘Golden Restless Age’ to the sabre-rattling cavalry charge of ‘Echoing’, there’s an abiding sense of Carpe Diem for Memento Mori. Don’t worry, it’s not as grim as it sounds.
It’s with very good reason that Kings of Leon have, for almost 20 years, been able to consistently bother the upper limits of the charts. I see no reason for that trend not to continue.
Listen to/order When You See Yourself here.