what I’m actually listening to: Kings of Leon’s Because of the Times

I try not to put on airs on this blog. I’ll try to talk about the stuff that I’m actually listening to and enjoying. If something is slipping through the cracks, I might try to readjust things with a “what I’m actually listening to” column.

I was on the fence, but I ended up buying it. We were in Amoeba while my friend Dave was in town. I was undecided and on Dave’s recommendation, I got King of Leon’s (myspace) Because of the Times. (not remembering that he’s sometimes an unreliable[1] recommender).

I’m not a hardcore fan of the Kings of Leon, having first heard them shortly after Aha Shake Heartbreak came out and I was reviewing it for the station (though I had heard of them: they had a signed photo in my favorite pizza parlor in Boston going back to probably 2001 or 2002). I didn’t know enough about them to know that I shouldn’t, as a friend put it, like that record, so I just listened in ignorance, enjoying the catchy music.

Similar to the way I’m not a hardcore fan of the band, I wasn’t blown away by this record, but the one thing I will tell you: in the three weeks I’ve had it in my 6-CD changer in my car, I’ve found myself pressing the button for this CD more than any other. I just keep going back to it. It’s just good music to listen to. On the rougher days, I blame it on needing comfort music, but on other days, I just enjoy the catchiness, the interesting vocals and the riffs. In some ways, I think of these guys in the same camp as the Hold Steady: bands unashamed of using big riffs and other ‘classic rock’ strongholds.

“Knocked Up” is the 7 minute lead-off track to this album. I like the way the instrumentation comes in: drums, then bass, then harmonics on the guitar, then another guitar—the full palate of them making a nice bed for the story of a guy, well, knocking up his girlfriend.

Kings of Leon – Knocked Up (mp3)

Because of the Times is available from insound.

[1] Seriously, he just recommended the new Clientele—I’ve listened to 3 of the last 4 Clientele albums and at least one of their 7″s all multiple times and not enjoyed any of them.



3 Responses to “what I’m actually listening to: Kings of Leon’s Because of the Times

  1. dave says:

    ouch. thanks man.

    “i dig the new clientele album.” doesn’t necessarily mean, “go out and buy this record.” i just enjoyed it. sorry if our tastes vary a bit.

    yikes.

  2. kevin says:

    well, I love the new Clientele. Almost as much as the last. And KOL are pretty good. They were the best show I saw last year (Great American Music Hall).

  3. [...] Kings of Leon – Because of the Times (original post) I’m not going to be able to issue a big list of why this album is good intellectually or why this is good art (though, that’s not to say someone else couldn’t), but I just like listening to this album. It spent a huge portion of the year–months–in my car’s 6-disc CD changer and despite a rotating cast of other albums to choose from, I kept coming back to this one anyhow. [...]

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