If you had to quickly match an album to a fashion aesthetic, it would be Kings Of Leon‘s When You See Yourself to Cottagecore – it’s so soft but also funky, so loud while being so quiet, it’s practically the musical equivalent of being an edgy young adult dreaming of life surrounded by nothing but baby’s breath and apple trees. Overflowing with a level of intensity that is easily received through phenomenal storytelling and gentle delivery, the band’s eighth studio album is a total hit without even trying to be.
If you’re a fan of that resonating “echo” sound that’s been a staple in the music of the English rock band The Smiths, then you’ll enjoy this album, as it eludes a similar charm. When you hear the album’s opener, until the 30-second mark of “When You See Yourself, Are You Far Away” you might not think much of it. Then that easygoing, subtle bassline hits you and that familiar, consistently cozy voice of Caleb Followill comes in and you feel right at home (at this point, Followill could sing the most gruesome song in existence and it would still somehow be relaxing).
Throughout the entire album, every song has a perfect balance between the music and the lyrics – “The Bandit” has a very quick, “on the run” sort of feeling, which is very thematic with what one might think a bandit’s personal soundtrack might sound like. “Golden Restless Age” is no different in that it’s almost as if the music itself could tell the story on its own – it simply feels, well, restless. Songs like “Supermarket” and “Claire and Eddie” will give off the illusion of watching an indie film while songs like “Stormy Weather” act as a sort of palate cleanser, preparing you for whatever is next. As a general statement, When You See Yourself is just fun to listen to and requires very little effort to find amusement within. It is storytelling at its most harmonious state with its music counterpart.
When You See Yourself is a great album, the kind of “great album” that really requires no further explanation. You’ve just got to listen to it, that’s all. See for yourself! Oh, and the track “100,000 People?” Stellar, simply stellar.