Kings of Leon: Mechanical Bull

Kings of Leon: Mechanical Bull

(RCA, 9/24/13)

"Supersoaker"

Kings of Leon received some undeserved flack for its mainstream breakthrough in 2008. Some dismissed the band as “mommy rock,” citing the ubiquity of tracks like “Sex on Fire” and “Use Somebody.” However, the band’s pedigree, going back nine years and three albums, should have spoken for itself. Its new album, Mechanical Bull, stands up on its amp, throws up the horns, and then flails away at the strings of classic rock with a verve seldom seen since the 1980s.

If opener “Supersoaker” doesn’t apprise you of the fact that you’re in for old-school rock, second track “Rock City” is here to remind you. Opening with some of the smoothest grooves around and enthused “woos!” from band members, it is ridiculous fun that is utterly unashamed.

And that is what the album is. From the opening riff to the final fade-out of Southern rocker “On the Chin,” the band clearly is having a blast. The sense of fun is infectious. Just like the imposing metal-and-leather bovine in the corner of your local Western bar, give this Mechanical Bull a chance.