Kings are subject to hatred from many an indie kid about town these days. Is this the price they pay for becoming the biggest band in the world? Have they sold out or has becoming mainstream changed them? I say yes it has, massively. of Leon
Their new single Radioactive sounds more like Bruce Springsteen than the horse screeching rock’n’roll noise the Tennessee four piece used to belt out. It holds a gospel Sunday morning church sing-along vibe that in no way can be cool for a band who started out so differently, imagine this being their first single, first video. Follow their career, when they first came upon us sporting 70’s style porn tash’s, tight clothes and cool haircuts they looked and sounded cooler than cool. Now as the albums have progressed and took the band to huge international success, they have moved more away from their roots and have become a rock band for the world. It annoys me that KOL take influence from the record label, dress in matching white suits, shave their beards and style their hair like the back street boys (Jared).
Radioactive does have Caleb’s signature vocal all over it and it rocks along to an melodic feel good beat but come on, it is wrong. This is not the Kings of Leon I remember or want to listen to. The lyrics are pretty weak, one thing which has been consistently cool through past albums. Going back to the video it seems like they are reaching out to people to be holier than holy, some sort of new Bob Geldof saving the children.
Kings of Leon were once a great band, their first two albums are belters, especially considering how quickly aha shake heartbreak came after the debut youth and young manhood. The third and fourth hold songs that are great but the direction they took suited the bigger venues to reach the wider audience. They have sold out. Radioactive get a big thumbs down.
Bring back the good stuff…