Kings Of Leon | Because Of The Times
The brothers from southern mothers return with a third album that carries nary a hint of their heartland sound. Leaning hard on heady, proggy arrangements pays off with lengthy opener "Knocked Up," a tune that exemplifies drummer Nathan Followill's Harp mag quote about brother Caleb's penchant for transforming inner demons into melodic poetry. "On Call" works the same subtle magic as 2005's "The Bucket." The melody takes its time to burrow into your memory, strengthening its staying power. With echoes of Springsteen, the panoramically soundscaped "Arizona" should have been titled "Nebraska." - Eric Shea

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