Kings of Leon was so much background noise to the rest of my weekend. They supposedly graduated to arena rock on the strength of their latest album Only by the Night and the radio hit Sex on Fire. It’s a catchy song, and along with their other single Use Somebody, those got the crowd roaring. But in between, there was a lot of generic noise, formless and indistinct dirty guitars and pounding drum beats. The songs relied too heavily on lead singer Caleb Followill’s vocals (who by the way, is unbelievably hot) to the convey the tune and then each song dropped off abruptly, not so much ending but just over as if someone had turned off the radio.
The 5-song encore was more energized and performed with more finesse than any songs that came before it, showing hints of possible future rock star cred. To be fair, the crowd seemed into it. But that’s what a crowd of mostly college students will get you, unbridled enthusiasm in the face of mediocrity. The performance at its best was average. Good for the guys to score a radio hit or two, now they need to work on their showmanship.