“Radioactive”, the new single off of Kings Of Leon’s fifth album, Come Around Sundown, will be the only track you’ll remember. I’m not sure if the band is going through a very early mid-life crisis or if they’ve made a conscience choice to keep every track as mellow as possible. Where are the rockers we love so much? Songs such as “Black Thumbnail”, “Molly’s Chambers”, and “Four Kicks” seem a thing of the past. Earlier releases such as Youth And Young Manhood and Aha Shake Heartbreak feature a young band bringing fierce, southern swing backed with sexiness and a cool, sassy flirtatiousness that Come Around Sundown lacks in it’s entirety.
For the single “Radioactive”, track two on the album, Kings Of Leon swing in and the build up is quick with singer Caleb Followill exclaiming, “It’s in the water, it’s in the story, it’s where you came from, the sons and daughters in all their glory”. The track rises higher and higher and will leave you singing along after one listen, as well as days later. The most riveting and uplifting aspect of the song is the addition of the West Angeles Mass Choir. This is the ironic “saving grace”.
The remaining 10 tracks are a disappointment. A bit of the album is upbeat, but simply borders on the edge only to keep slipping back into the tone-downed instrumentation that is a token part of the Kings Of Leon sound. But please, this doesn’t need to happen for every second of every song on the entire album. Again, “Radioactive” is the single, and it stands alone among the boring two or three minutes of every other track on this Come Around Sundown. If you’re an old, die-hard Kings Of Leon fan Come Around Sundown will upset you. Keep what you love about this band close to your heart and ignore this album, you’ll thank yourself in the end.