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Kings of Leon

Initially embraced as "the Southern Strokes" for their resurrection and reinvention of Dixie-styled rock & roll, Kings of Leon steadilymorphed themselves into an experimental rock outfit during the 2000s. The Tennessee-bred quartet debuted in 2003 with the Holy RollerNovocaine EP, whose blend of raw, unpolished boogie rock was further explored on their debut full-length, Youth & Young Manhood. Suchrevivalist music was matched by a similarly revivalist appearance -- including long hair, mustaches, and tight-fitting denim -- and Kings ofLeon experienced immediate popularity in the U.K. (where th ...read more

Initially embraced as "the Southern Strokes" for their resurrection and reinvention of Dixie-styled rock & roll, Kings of Leon steadilymorphed themselves into an experimental rock outfit during the 2000s. The Tennessee-bred quartet debuted in 2003 with the Holy RollerNovocaine EP, whose blend of raw, unpolished boogie rock was further explored on their debut full-length, Youth & Young Manhood. Suchrevivalist music was matched by a similarly revivalist appearance -- including long hair, mustaches, and tight-fitting denim -- and Kings ofLeon experienced immediate popularity in the U.K. (where they would later enjoy platinum album sales, despite an initially lukewarmreception at home). As the band explored different sonic textures with subsequent releases, most notably on 2007's Because of the Timesand 2008's Only by the Night, those tenuous links to the Strokes were finally dissolved.

Comprised of three Followill brothers -- Caleb (guitar), Nathan (drums), and Jared (bass) -- as well as first cousin Matthew Followill (guitar),Kings of Leon formed in 2000. The Followill siblings had spent their youth traveling across America's heartland with their evangelist father,decamping at Pentecostal churches and tent revivals for several days at a time before moving onward. When their father resigned from thechurch and divorced his wife in 1997, the boys relocated to Nashville and embraced the rock music (not to mention the accompanyinglifestyle) they'd previously been denied. Cousin Matthew was added to the lineup, and a Southern garage rock sound quickly emerged. RCAtook note, signing the band in 2001 and facilitating a partnership with Nashville-based producer Angelo Petraglia, who furthered the band'srock & roll education and co-wrote the material for 2003's Holy Roller Novocaine EP.

Tours across North America and the U.K. coincided with the release of the band's full-length debut, Youth & Young Manhood, that samesummer. Thanks to the popular single "Molly's Chambers," the album found moderately success in the U.K. However, it was their sophomoreeffort, 2004's Aha Shake Heartbreak, that made them European stars, with three songs cracking the U.K. charts. The album saw anAmerican release in February 2005, and Kings of Leon toured the country alongside U2 before retreating to work on their third effort. Thedarker, expansive Because of the Times followed in 2007. Featuring production from Ethan Johns (who had helmed the band's previousreleases as well), the album proved to be the band's biggest release to date, debuting at number 25 on the U.S. Billboard 200 and toppingthe album charts in the U.K., Ireland, and New Zealand.

Kings of Leon returned one year later with Only by the Night, a colossally popular album whose lead single, "Sex on Fire," gave the band itsfirst number one hit in the U.K. The album itself fared similarly well, topping the U.K. charts upon its release and debuting at number four inAmerica. It eventually gained platinum status in eight countries, including America, and its success allowed the band to tour heavilythroughout much of 2008 and 2009. Live at the O2 was released at the tail end of 2009, capturing one of the band's midsummerperformances in London. Kings of Leon briefly holed up in Manhattan's Avatar Studios to work on a fifth record, but they returned to the roadduring the summer of 2010, taking the opportunity to play some of their new material in concert. By the time the tour wrapped up inSeptember, the group's newest single, "Radioactive," had already been released. The accompanying album, Come Around Sundown, followedin October. « hide

Similar Bands: The Strokes, The Libertines, The Raconteurs, The Cribs

LPs
Mechanical Bull
09/24/2013

3.2
114 Votes
Come Around Sundown
2010

3.3
417 Votes
Only By The Night
2008

3.4
964 Votes
Because Of The Times
2007

3.7
597 Votes
Aha Shake Heartbreak
2005

3.7
533 Votes
Youth and Young Manhood
2003

3.5
387 Votes
EPs
Day Old Belgian Blues
2006

3.2
10 Votes
What I Saw
2003

2.5
6 Votes
Holy Roller Novocaine EP
2003

3.7
22 Votes
Live Albums
Live at the O2 London, England
2009

3.7
21 Votes

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