“Mechanical Bull” has no heart

By BRADEN LAMMERS

It’s been three years since Kings of Leon have released a new album. And from the sound of the band’s first single, “Supersoaker,” which came out in July, the group was looking to reclaim some of its lost rock roots.

Since Kings of Leon released its first album in 2003, “Youth & Young Manhood” the dirty, Southern rock that help grab the group some attention has gotten progressively softer. More ballads replaced the three minute rock songs about, well, sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.

Record rating: 3.5 out of 10

Record rating: 3.5 out of 10

“Mechanical Bull” released in late-September starts off promisingly enough. “Supersoaker,” the first track and first single from the album, moves the group away from the overly processed pop-rock.

“Supersoaker,” at least touches the semblance of a rock song and gives a glimpse into the the Kings of Leon of albums past.

But after you get beyond track one, it’s back to the formula that has not delivered for the Tennessee-based four piece.

Just to remind you that they are a rock band there is an obligatory 30 second guitar solo tossed haphazardly into “Rock City,” the second track on “Mechanical Bull.” From the second song, it is apparent Kings of Leon have fallen back into the rock-pop mold that led them astray.

It doesn’t get better from there.

While the lyrics from Kings of Leon never really had a great flow, were a bit vapid and often didn’t make any sense, the band has reached a new low with songs like “Family Tree.”

“Family Tree” opines, “I see you sitting in your masquerade/ I love to pour you some of my lemonade … I am your family tree/ I know your A to Z/ this is a secret proposition lay your hands on me/ nothin’ to talk about darlin’/ it’s all make believe.”

And then the band goes into blatant recycle mode with a song called “Tonight.”

The rock edge is gone, long gone.

All that is left is a mismatched album hoping to reach a larger audience by blending the band’s sound into something palatable for top 40 pop radio masses. It is as contrived as it sounds and turns out to be something for none of the masses.

Record rating: 3.5 out of 10

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About hoosierhits
The music blog of the News and Tribune, Jeffersonville & New Albany, Ind.

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