By Associated Press, Three years after the Kings of Leons last record, the edgy, gravely rock foursome return in top shape with Mechanical Bull. The album takes the bands unique sound the recognizable longing guitars and Caleb Followills growl and adds a hint of melancholy and a stillness that gives the songs an aura of contentment. Looking for things to do? Select one or more criteria to search Kid-friendly Get ideas Nervy desire and wildness is still present in their music, most prominently in Tonight, with its sexy vibes of earlier hits that hinted at mad tumbling into lust, and in the obsessive strummings of Wait for Me. The playful notes of the first single, Supersoaker, set the tone, adding a sense of giddiness to the proceedings. Dont Matter goes full-on rock in the beginning but is gradually imbued with a hint of Billy Joel. Temple starts out noisily and morphs into the confident stage presence of a rock star. Beautiful War rounds up the sound with a heartfelt ballad that showcases Calebs voice. And Family Tree sounds like an old man trying to give advice to the young, who think they know better than everyone else. Despite tackling the familiar themes of drunken nights and tentative love, the songs weave the story of a man who knows the meaning of being lost and who has finally been found. Mechanical Bull isnt the anguished edgy ride youd expect from Kings of Leon but a fun, stirring experience you dont want to end. ____ Follow Cristina Jaleru on Twitter: http://twitter.com/cristinelle7 Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Music Review: Kings of Leon tame themselves in 6th studio album, ‘Mechanical Bull’
Natives of French-speaking Canada, Finland, Italy, Croatia, Germany, Poland, Ireland and Hungary perform the songs, which represent 10 languages. John and Alan Lomax’s archives at the library’s American Folklife Center encompass 10,000 sound recordings and 6,000 graphic images, documenting creative expression by cultural groups around the world. Most famous were the field recordings made in the South, including those of Leadbelly, Muddy Waters and Son House. “This fills in a big chunk of the top half of the middle section of the country,” says Laurie Sommers, an ethnomusicologist who serves as Michigan’s program coordinator for the Lomax project. “Now you have the stories and the sounds of sailors, miners and lumberjacks, ethnic communities who came to work … and brought their traditions with them.” One example is Exilia Bellaire, a woman from the Upper Peninsula community of Baraga who recorded “I Went to Marquette.” It’s sung in a mixture of French and English, and Harvey said the song is one of many that “captures (what) occurs when cultures interact with one another.” Lomax’s Michigan research proved to be challenging. Thieves twice broke into his car and stole equipment and films, and performers would hound him for money or liquor in exchange for recording them. He frequently requested more money from headquarters, in part, he wrote, because “songs in (Michigan) absolutely require beer.” The recordings weren’t released at the time, in part because the late 1930s were a time of growing suspicion of non-English speaking immigrants in the United States, said Sommers. Now, the library is releasing a podcast and an e-book, and the University of Wisconsin is releasing a multi-CD set. A traveling exhibit with live concerts will begin Sept. 30 in Mount Pleasant, about 120 miles northwest of Detroit.