ONLY BY THE NIGHT by Kings of Leon

It's nice to be surprised by music. The Kings of Leon album Only by the Night is a rock album that delivers strong music from start to finish.

The sonic opening songs "Closer" and "Crawl" might make one expect nothing but loud electric guitars, but the Kings of Leon effortlessly move from romantic songs ("Use Somebody") to mellow melodies ("Manhattan"). Lead singer Caleb Followhill has a voice that isn't always smooth but is earnest and filled with passion -- everything Nickleback's lead singer isn't. Caleb's brothers Nathan and Jared, and his cousin Matthew, make up the rest of the band, matching vocals with excellent instrumentation.

If you're looking for a rock album that isn't either typical classic rock or generic top 40, pick up Only by the Night. Kings of Leon have made a great album with a really original sound.

Overall grade: A

Reviewed by James Lynch

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