Kings Of Leon Rule Jones Beach, NY 8-1-17

Kings Of Leon Rule Jones Beach, NY 8-1-17

Summertime concerts are always nicer when you can enjoy your favorite band outdoors under the stars. This all in mind, on the warm summer evening of Tuesday August 1, 2017, music lovers flocked to the Northwell Health at Jones Beach theater on the south shore of Long Island, New York to get their fix of Kings Of Leon on their summer 2017 WALLS Tour. Being their first visit to the venue since supporting their Mechanical Bull album back in 2014, a buzz filled the air awaiting the shows beginning. 

This band of brothers, Caleb (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Jared (bass, backing vocals), and Nathan Followill (drums, backing vocals) as well as their cousin Matthew Followill (lead guitar, backing vocals) have been making music together since 1999. Having an interesting childhood, seeing their father was a traveling preacher, they spent most of their youth on the road throughout the bible belt of the southern United States. As they got older, and started to grow into their own lives, music became their focus. Finding themselves in Nashville, Tennessee to work together on music, since that time they have honed their own unique sound, winning a total of four Grammy Awards while releasing one top selling album after another, including the 2016 number # 1 hit album WALLS

As mentioned, a beautiful summer’s evening, many arrived to the grounds of the theaters early to tailgate, barbequing, tossing frisbies, and having a great time. Then when the time came for doors to open, the venue filled up quickly as everyone took their seats ready to enjoy Kings of Leon tourmates Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats.

Hailing from Colorado, playing for the first hour, the Americana influenced band led by Rateliff played a set which included “Look It Here,” “Out on the Weekend,” “I Need Never Get Old” and “S.O.B.” Overall a feel good mix of well-written Folk songs, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats was a delightful opener well-worth showing up early for the rest of the tour. 

During intermission, more and more people found their seats as the sun set behind them and day turned to night. With the sound of a heartbeat being amplified over the sound system, a burst of cheering broke out, everyone knew the curtains would soon rise and the moment they were waiting for would begin. With anticipation high, the curtains rose and the Kings Of Leon began the night with “Conversation Piece.” A good way to break the ice, they then brought fans back a ways with two songs from 2005’s Aha Shake Heartbreak in the form of “Taper Jean Girl” and “The Bucket.”

Quite enthusiastic through the first few tracks, after playing 2010’s “Mary” they rewound to the beginning with “California Waiting,” a song that appeared on their 2003 debut EP, Holly Roller Novocaine, as well as their debut album, Youth & Young Manhood. Keeping the music coming and having the audience enjoying themselves, everyone swayed to the beat of “Notion” and “Fans,” but from the first note of “Use Somebody,” the otherwise darkness over the audience turned to light as cell phones rose high in the air to catch a video as everyone sang along. 

As soon as “Use Somebody” came to an end, crushed red velvet curtains fell from the rafters leaving only Caleb visible at the front of the stage. In the spotlight he began the song “Milk” with only an acoustic guitar, but not before long he was joined by the rest of the band, all forming a line with acoustic instruments playing to the pumped up audience. Continuing acoustic for the next song, “Talihina Sky,” the band left Caleb alone once more for the beginning of “WALLS.” With Caleb all by himself for the crowd to see with only an acoustic guitar, a full band of music could still be heard playing and once the curtains lifted near the end of the song, it revealed the entire band which was accompanied by their friends Liam O’Neil on piano and Timothy Deaux on rhythm guitar. 

A wonderful surprise, they soon continued with WALLS’ “Find Me” before “On Call” and three straight songs from 2010’s Come Around Sundown – “Radioactive,” “Back Down South,” and “The Immortals.” Covering all bases, they also included 2013’s “Family Tree” and crowd favorite “Knocked Up” igniting more singing along before “Crawl” and “Cold Desert” heated things up with “Pyro.”

Enjoying “Reverend,” the band soon bathed the audience with “Supersoaker” before the chart-topping hit “Sex on Fire” where Caleb was happy to let everyone assist in singing along and even giving them the spotlight during one of the chorus. At this point the band had paid a rather extensive set and expressed sincere gratitude before fittingly closing out with “Waste a Moment.”

All in all it was a beautiful night under the stars, but in the eyes of these concertgoers the biggest stars were Kings Of Leon. With their strong melodic groove, Caleb’s sultry voice, intriguing stage lighting and effects, the show was a real crowd-pleaser that had all eyes locked on the stage. 

For those who missed this show, Kings of Leon’s WALLS Tour 2017 continues throughout the United States and Canada through the end of October, and fans in Mexico will see them for two consecutive dates in November. With so many dates left on their itinerary there are plenty of chances to go out and see this exciting Rock band live, so be sure to grab tickets and enjoy a show near you. 

 

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Diane Woodcheke
Diane Woodcheke
dwoodcheke@gmail.com

Diane has had her eye on a camera viewfinder since she was very young. She specializes in Fine Art, Event, and Concert Photography. She is also a writer of concert and album reviews, as well as contributing various online publications such as CrypticRock.

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