Kings of Leon rock the BOK Center
BY JENNIFER CHANCELLOR World Scene Writer
Friday, April 08, 2011
6/01/12 at 7:29 AM
Related story: Band proud of Okie ties.
Welcome back, Kings of Leon.
The band rocked the BOK Center on Friday night with a homecoming show of sorts, kicked off with an induction into the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame. But the family members and musicmen wasted no time getting to the point of their visit.
They came to rock.
"We have a lot of friends here tonight, so we're going to have a few drinks and try to have a good time tonight!" yelled frontman Caleb Followill. "I love you guys! You're a great crowd!"
"It's always good to be back in Oklahoma. We actually went to school not too far from here."
More than 15,000 people sang in time to tight and emotive rockers, including “Sex on Fire,” “Radioactive,” “Taper Jean Girl,” “On Call,” “Use Somebody,” "Birthday,” "Back Down South,” “Fans,” “No Money,” “Black Thumbnail,” “Closer,” “4 Kicks” and “Knocked Up.” The energetic crowd cried and swayed, hands raised.
The fact that the band has made itself so popular with so little mainstream airplay is no small feat. Kings of Leons fans are dedicated and fervid, and there’s a good reason for that.
The band is tight, talented and can make any gig seem like an intimate exchange. They’re preaching the gospel of the singer-songwriter: Spill your soul.
It was a stripped-down, well-lit stage set, giving an open feel to the crowd. The music was anthemic, all-American, with pyrotechnic power chords.
Caleb Followill thanked his fans multiple times throughout the night, with the crowd erupting in gratitude each time.
"Until next time, God bless you all,” he said in parting.
The band isn’t new to show business. It had three full-length releases before the breakthrough 2008 “Only by the Night.”
None of its members could have imagined the rise to superstardom that has carried them to the top, selling out stadiums of 60,000 or more.
Band of Horses opened the night with bright guitar riffs and epic 3-guitar throttle, heavy drum syncopation and four-part harmonies. The lead singer's Perry Ferrell-meets-Neil Young vocals layered warmly over the epic music-making, emotive and soulful. They even covered Tulsa Sound icon J.J. Cale's "Thirteen Days."
It was the band's first night on the road with Kings of Leon.
To see all of the Tulsa World slide shows, go to tulsaworld.com/photos.
Caleb Followill of the Kings of Leon performs during the band's performance at the BOK Center in Tulsa on Friday night. ADAM WISNESKI/Tulsa World
Fans crowd the stage for the Kings of Leon at the BOK Center on Friday night. ADAM WISNESKI/Tulsa World