Thursday, 5 August 2010

Seen It>> Kings of Leon at Hyde Park - 30/06/10

Followills Matthew, Caleb, Nathan and Jared rock out to the Hyde Park audience.

Their first trip back across the pond since their embarrasing and disastrous Reading headline performance last year, Kings of Leon seemed determined to put that behind them, opening their biggest ever concert in high tempo.

The 65,000 concert sold out within minutes, when it went on sale, and the Followill clan received a warm reception with opener Crawl, from 2008's Only By The Night. The entire crowd greeted the opening bass riff in hysterics and everyone seemed to yell the lyrics back at the band. However the collosus crowd is somewhat relaxed when Aha Shake Heartbreak's Taper Jean Girl begins playing, perhaps suggesting many of the crowd are unaware of their older guard.

The next biggest cheer comes 7 songs later with Closer, another of superstar-breakthrough album Only By The Night's crowd favourites. However older songs, Wasted Time, Molly's Chambers (both from debut album Youth and Young Manhood), Four Kicks and The Bucket, show off why the band's early efforts gave them their 'Southern Strokes' title.

"We've been away for a while," frontman Caleb tells the crowd, "but since we've last seen you guys, we made another record." The band launch into new album songs, Immortals, Mary, Radioactive and Southband. However it's not long till Caleb tells the crowd, "don't worry the song you're waiting for is coming." Then cousin Matthew begins the two-note riff of Sex On Fire, leaving the entire crowd in raptures, suggesting perhaps some had only come along for this song.

A cover of Pixies' Where Is My Mind and Youth and Young Manhood's Trani, ends the first session. The band returning for their encore with the seven minute rendition of Because of the Times' Knocked Up, greeted by "oh woahs" from the crowd, before the secong biggest cheer of the night comes via Use Somebody. Their set is ended on Because of the Times song Black Thumbnail.

Almost one year on from their last set in the capital, it seems Kings of Leon have learned to accept that their fame and crowd appeal remains with their newer radio-friendly songs from Only By The Night, suggesting why there was a lack of older songs missing from the set.


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