Kings Of Leon – Come Around Sundown (RCA/Sony) CD Review

I blame the arena. No matter what a band sounds like, after a few tours playing to huge crowds, their music turns to sludge. [Not that I have any problems with sludge-music when it’s done well, but you know what I mean…]

If you listen hard to Come Around Sundown, you can hear the Southern boogie band at their core. There are worse things than Southern boogie blown up out of all proportion, distended grotesquely, bent out of shape, pompous and arena-bloated; there’s Jefferson Starship, and REO Speedwagon, for example.

Probably the worst thing about this endeavor is its earnestness. They could at least admit to having a bit of fun now that they’re millionaires.

Sounding for all the world like a Kentucky fried U2, there’s a missionary zeal here that would probably appeal to their congregation back home. It’s clichéd, dated stuff with loads of dreary filler, and the big-sounding production can’t disguise that.

The production is immense. While the vocals are mixed a little bit lean, the rest of it is chunky, gutsy, and reasonably detailed. Unfortunately, the songs are mundane, mono-dimensional and drab. GARY STEEL

Sound = 4

Music = 2.5

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