<%-- Page Title--%> Pop Beat <%-- End Page Title--%>

<%-- Volume Number --%> Vol 1 Num 114 <%-- End Volume Number --%>

July 18, 2003

<%-- Navigation Bar--%>
<%-- Navigation Bar--%>
<%-- 5% Text Table--%>

Wallpaper for the Soul...

CD Review

Kings of Leon
Youth and Young Manhood

Sons of a preacher man and disciples of punk, the Kings of Leon are Tennessee boys who rejected their religious roots in favour of sex, drugs and old-fashioned rock'n'roll. Clinging to their retro influences with a toddler's tenacity, their debut is a Kerouac-styled, lust-propelled journey into emergent adulthood.
Using and abusing passionate gospel, country sweetness and filthy guitar licks, the Kings of Leon are the kind of authentic, hairy rebels the Rolling Stones longed to be.
Driving, fuzzy rhythms grind under Dylan-esque phrasing, with singer Caleb Followill's whiskey-woozy voice and good-time attitude never obscuring his obvious fears.
Above a piercing lead guitar that never strays far from the Chuck Berry template, he tears into Red Morning Light and makes the White Stripes sound about as bluesy as Wham!
The energy and enthusiasm never falter: California Waiting is utopian and desperate, while the hedonism of Joe's Head is almost claustrophobic. By the time the slightly shambolic singalong of Dusty sweeps over you, you'll be smitten.

Tahiti 80
Wallpaper for the Soul

Once we are past midsummer, long summer days take on the slight sadness of knowing that the season is edging to a close. This notion is grasped perfectly by French quartet Tahiti 80.
Their second album blends Style Council bouncing beats, Isley Brothers guitar solos, swirling orchestrations (courtesy of the Urban Soul Orchestra), horns and ever-changing Moogs, together with a childlike wonderment reminiscent of endless school holidays and jugs of real lemonade by the beach.
However, submerged beneath the teasing dance invitations of tracks like 1,000 Times, there is the same tinge of melancholy that makes the Beach Boys' records so enduring.
Singer and main songwriter Xavier Boyer's vocals are almost disturbingly wistful, and there is a nagging dread and tension in lines like Get Yourself Together's "Make things happen while there's still time".
An album for hot afternoons and pensive showery days, the perfect July-September soundtrack for us weather-ruled Brits.

The Billboard Top Ten Albums
1. Beyonce, Dangerously In Love
2. Michelle Branch, Hotel Paper
3. Luther Vandross, Dance With My Father
4. Three 6 Mafia, Da Unbreakables
5. Metallica, St. Anger
6. 50 Cent, Get Rich Or Die Tryin'
7. Monica, After The Storm
8. Evanescence, Fallen
9. Norah Jones, Come Away With Me
10. Annie Lennox, Bare Top Ten Independent Albums

Top Ten Independent Albums
1. Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz, Kings Of Crunk
2. Twiztid, The Green Book
3. Mannheim Steamroller/C.W. McCall, American Spirit
4. Various Artists, Vans Warped Tour 2003 Compilation
5. Dwight Yoakam, Population: Me
6. Me First And The Gimme Gimmes, Take A Break
7. Craig Morgan, I Love It
8. Louie DeVito, Louie DeVito's Dance Factory Level
9. Alkaline Trio, Good Mourning
10. Dropkick Murphys, Blackout

Top Ten R&B/Hip-Hop Albums
1. Ashanti, Chapter II
2. Beyonce, Dangerously In Love
3. Luther Vandross, Dance With My Father
4. Monica, After The Storm
5. Three 6 Mafia, Da Unbreakables
6. 50 Cent, Get Rich Or Die Tryin'
7. Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz, Kings Of Crunk
8. R. Kelly, Chocolate Factory
9. Gang Starr, The Ownerz
10. Soundtrack, 2 Fast 2 Furious


(C) Copyright The Daily Star. The Daily Star Internet Edition, is jointly published by the Daily Star with the technical assistance provided by Onirban.