Kings Of Leon
Mechanical Bull - RCA
FILTER Grade: 78%
By Daniel Kohn on September 27, 2013
A mechanical bull usually conjures up images of a wild bachelorette party. And the title seems apt for the Followills, for whom the past few years have been the proverbial wild ride. Between marriages, rehab and grappling with sudden, delayed Stateside fame, the Kings have had their fair share of pressures to deal since their breakthrough a half decade ago. The three-year layoff has served them well. Though they may have felt immense pressure to replicate the monster hits that have come to be expected of them, the band have struck proper middle ground between the jaggedy, bluesy Southern rock of their early years with more polished commercial anthems. Punchy first single “Supersoaker” and the anthemic “Temple” are rockers that will appeal to people familiar with the band’s rugged years, while the tender “Wait For Me” and “Walk A Mile” are at home as the not-too-distant relatives of 2008’s “Use Somebody.” Ten years after they first emerged, Kings of Leon seem to have weathered the pitfalls that come with rock megastardom and the energy harnessed in their reflective songwriting accurately reflects where they are as a band today, which is to say that they’re perhaps forever comfortable reaffirming their status as one of rock’s biggest bands.