SCOTIABANK SADDLEDOME, APRIL 1, 2014
Disappointed: the first word that comes to mind when thinking of how this Kings of Leon fan felt after leaving the show on Tuesday. Being an avid listener that has followed their career through all six album releases, this was a show that I had been anticipating for months. Maybe my expectations were too high or maybe the palpable crush I have on all four band members is too intense. Whatever the case may be I left feeling like a tiny light inside of me died.
Local Natives opened, which was a great addition to the bill considering the two bands have a cohesive sound and appeal to the same type of music fan. They successfully kicked off the night with their buoyant indie-rock songs, leaving the crowd engaged and ready for Kings to take the stage.
Opening with the gritty ”Charmer” and performing behind a huge, barely-transparent curtain, Kings of Leon started on a high note. They sound just as good – if not better – than they do on the record, which is always refreshing, but isn’t enough to make a great show on its own.
When the curtain fell, I expected to see a band that was as intense and enthralling as their music. Instead I saw four bored, dare I say washed-up, rock stars.
It felt like they were just going through the motions, dishing out hits, but with a lack of passion and intention. No fun was being had and not even a sliver of genuine appreciation was seen. They are undoubtedly seasoned performers who are incredibly talented, but they seemed to be indifferent towards the crowd and the show.
The only real highlight of the night was the set. Beautifully laid out with bits and pieces from every album played in a sequence that was enhanced by a perfectly time light show.
Maybe the vast majority of audience members would argue that it was an incredible show, filled with great music and performances, but after looking into their eyes it was completely evident that the band members were physically in the building, but their minds, their passion and their hearts were not.
Words and photos by Kayla Beattie