Kings Of Leon back in 2003, shortly after the release of their debut EP, ‘Holy Roller Novocaine’. The disc contained the likes of ‘Molly’s Chambers’, ‘Wasted Time’ and ‘California Waiting’ and set a precedent for the quality of the tracks to come.
An early NME shoot in 2003 shows the boys at their beardiest. They released ‘Youth And Young Manhood’ in August that year and we awarded it a rare 9/10.
We called their 2003 effort “one of the best debuts of the last ten years”. It was recorded in California with producer Ethan Johns, son of the Rolling Stones and Eagles producer Glyn Johns.
The frenzied response to their debut album ‘Youth And Young Manhood’ led to the Kings being booked as support act for the likes of The Strokes and U2, which served to accelerate their ascent into the big league.
The shaggy-haired Kings Of Leon in a photographer’s studio in 2003. The band actually formed in 1999 after their strict Pentecostal preacher father resigned from the church and they were free to pursue rock and roll.
Killing time on the tourbus in 2003. For the full story of Kings Of Leon’s triumphant Hyde Park show, including an interview with the band, grab this week’s NME magazine.
The Followill clan tied up for NME in 2003, the year they released their critically-acclaimed album ‘Youth And Young Manhood’. The title of the LP was actually taken from the inside cover of one of their father’s Pentecostal bibles.
Some lucky punters catch an early club show in 2003. Their recent gigs saw 60,000 fans cram into Hyde Park to see the band headline above the likes of The Black Keys and The Drums.
Kings Of Leon in festival attire in 2003. The band used their recent Hyde Park shows to debut four new songs, with one track employing almost metal-esque guitars.
Chris Martin, Gwyneth Paltrow, Howard Donald and Fearne Cotton were among the celebs at this week’s Hyde Park show.
The band put on a special barbecue for all the other bands playing after their Hyde Park show, but didn’t stay around to celebrate. They headed straight to their hotel after the gig. Get the full lowdown in this week’s NME.
2004 saw the Kings somewhat less hairy but still on the hirsute side of life. It was also the year they released ‘Aha Shake Heartbreak’.
By 2007, they’d released ‘Because Of The Times’ and were a fully-fledged enormo-band, playing to huge crowds in the UK and Europe, although massive fame in the US still somewhat eluded them.
‘Because Of The Times’ received somewhat mixed reviews. While NME awarded the LP 8/10, Pitchfork were less generous, marking it 5.4/10.
Kings Of Leon played the main stage at the Reading Festival in 2007, just below headliners Razorlight.
Kings Of Leon backstage at Brixton Academy in 2008.
Another exclusive backstage shot from Brixton Academy. The band played the venue shortly before their appearances at the V Festival and a few months after headlining Glastonbury.
Kings Of Leon (now sporting 50% less hair) make friends with a vulture for an NME shoot in 2008. They released their fourth studio album ‘Only By The Night’ in September that year.
A 2010 NME cover, around the group’s massive Hyde Park show.