As U2 comparisons pile up with the arrival of their slick new Only by the Night, Kings of Leon brought exactly what a heaving Webster Hall seemed to clamor for last night at the record-release show: the arena, downsized. Rolling out most of the new disc, Family Followill punched holes in the roof with jumbo choruses and riffs. The single “Sex on Fire” and “Use Somebody” also set the floorboards rumbling more intensely than they would at any other point in the night. While the band did indulge some applause (leading into the new wailer “Revelry,” for instance), it was just another designer-duds day at the office for the boys: Caleb let loose with a barrage of leonine, pelvic love pumps that sent women (and men) into hormonal fits; drummer Nathan sneaked sips of Michelob Ultra between poker-faced snare hits, blowing bubbles with his gum all the while. Rock gods? Nah — but serious rock dudes.
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