• Record Label: RCA
  • Release Date: Oct 14, 2016
Metascore
62

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 23
  2. Negative: 1 out of 23
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  1. Magnet
    Nov 16, 2016
    85
    Walls could be their portal to lingering greatness. [No. 137, p.57]
  2. 83
    The result is their richest, most textured effort yet.
  3. Oct 13, 2016
    80
    Ultimately, with WALLS, Kings of Leon have struck a nice balance between the garage band passion of their early work, and the large scale bombast that made them stars.
  4. 80
    Here they sound more focused and alive than they have for a while.
  5. Oct 12, 2016
    67
    Musically, WALLS isn’t some adventurous left turn towards krautrock or no wave. Rather, it’s KOL’s most unified, solid, and direct album since Aha Shake Heartbreak, its arc owing to time-tested AOR more than anything else.
  6. Nov 7, 2016
    60
    Although this album does replicate almost everything they’ve created it has that sense of maturity about it, showing that over the sixteen years they’ve moved on from their rebellious teen stage.
  7. Mojo
    Oct 28, 2016
    60
    Walls is not a lovable album but if Kings Of Leon would rather be taken seriously these days, instead of simply being adored, they have put down a solid foundation. [Dec 2016, p.89]
  8. Uncut
    Oct 25, 2016
    60
    The absence of imagination here is a tad dispiriting. [Dec 2016, p.30]
  9. Q Magazine
    Oct 19, 2016
    60
    Having survived some rough patches, they've made adjustments and becomes as warm, robust and satisfying as a cuddle in front of the TV. [Dec 2016, p.111]
  10. Oct 18, 2016
    60
    For Kings of Leon to remain interesting and relevant, they need to stop trying to be the band the music business seems to want them to be and start following Caleb Followill’s muse wherever it leads.
  11. Oct 17, 2016
    60
    It’s not perfect, but it does point towards promising a future.
  12. Oct 17, 2016
    60
    This, then, is a big, expansive, commercial album, its hair shorn and occasionally gelled into directional styles, but one keen to bare its soul.
  13. Oct 14, 2016
    60
    Producer Markus Dravs (Coldplay, Mumford & Sons) does an admirable job of translating Followill's signature slurred delivery and the band's muscular jangle into thicker arrangements, though the result can feel generic.
  14. Oct 13, 2016
    60
    No wheels are being reinvented here, but while much of Walls marks a return to the Kings sound of eight years ago, there is some experimentation.
  15. 60
    Alas, by front-loading the album with the kind of numbers U2 would be proud of--witness Reverend--Walls grinds to a halt in tedious balladry, rather than scaling new heights.
  16. Oct 14, 2016
    50
    WALLS sounds safe and comfortable. The songs coast along with a mellow fluidity that serves to establish a decidedly mature, if complacent, sound.
  17. Oct 20, 2016
    45
    Sadly, they seem content for the kind of mediocrity that designates you as the headliner Firefly and Bonnaroo call when someone else isn’t available.
  18. Oct 13, 2016
    45
    The Tennessee boys that used to hang on your back, shouting in your ear with whiskey on their breath have grown up, and now preach wound-down wisdom with an arm around your shoulder. But the charm wears thin over the course of a full record.
  19. 42
    Nobody’s asking Kings of Leon to reinvent the wheel here, but they could at least make their hubcaps a bit flashier.
  20. Oct 18, 2016
    40
    You really can’t get het up one way or another about a song like ‘Waste a Moment’, which might as well be called ‘Lead Single’, nor can you muster up anything other than a yawn as ‘Conversation Piece’ stretches out like a cat in front of a fire on a cold winter night.
  21. 40
    Lyrics have never been the band’s strongest suit, and WALLS is no exception, with the blandest of emotional expressions occasionally punctuated by simple stupidity.
  22. Oct 12, 2016
    40
    It lacks the immediate bombast of either that last LP or 2010’s ‘Come Around Sundown’, but neither is it straight-up boring.
  23. Oct 12, 2016
    30
    Even by the standards of the arena-pop hit-chasers they've become, and not the down-and-dirty guitar band they once were, WALLS is a grating, overly slick disappointment.
User Score
6.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 94 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 59 out of 94
  2. Negative: 18 out of 94
  1. Oct 14, 2016
    8
    While not a complete reinvention of their style, WALLS finds a much more consistent and focused Kings of Leon than we have seen before, theWhile not a complete reinvention of their style, WALLS finds a much more consistent and focused Kings of Leon than we have seen before, the result of which is their most mature album yet.

    In recruiting producer Markus Dravs, the album finds a much glossier production than we are accustomed to seeing from the Kings. This extra layer of sound both enhances and detracts from the band, certain to ruffle the feathers of some loyal listeners, but where Dravs has really succeed is in pushing the band to find the heart of every song. Each song has its own purpose, its own sound, something that is even more impressive when you notice the surprising amount of cohesion in the album. WALLS flows from beginning to end, hitting its high peaks and emotional valleys with a sense of ease. While their past two efforts have seen the band on autopilot, here we find them climbing into the driver's seat and taking us for a journey.

    WALLS isn't going to change the face of music or galvanize its listeners like earlier efforts from the Kings, but if this is the first step in a new era for the band, as they claim it is, then we can expect great things to come.
    Full Review »
  2. Oct 14, 2016
    10
    Após três anos se passarem desde Mechanical Bull, os agora adultos de Nashville estão mais que prontos para retornar com o peito inflado eApós três anos se passarem desde Mechanical Bull, os agora adultos de Nashville estão mais que prontos para retornar com o peito inflado e cantar sobre o amor. Em se tratando de gênero e estilo adotado na obra, WALLS se parece muito com a jovialidade apresentada no álbum de 2013, que somente o amor pode proporcionar, mas ao mesmo tempo se distancia por ter uma temática bem distinta. WALLS não é um álbum tradicional de rock, e nem foi feito pra ser dessa forma, tampouco não é um álbum que irá permanecer na mídia por longos tempos, WALLS é simplesmente um álbum para ser escutado em horas mais oportunas. Algumas melodias soam velhas e ao mesmo tempo atuais, essa contradição gerada e estabelecida pelo álbum é a parte que muito impressiona no conjunto. Full Review »
  3. Oct 17, 2016
    0
    I once used to love this band, and also bought every album from the very beginning, but... since the release of Come around sundown, theyI once used to love this band, and also bought every album from the very beginning, but... since the release of Come around sundown, they changed the way of their sound and the way they perform as a band, I couldn't get used to it at first. While come around sundown was at least ok, since there were only 4 or 5 good songs on it, their upcoming album "mechanical bull" was a waste of money and time. And WALLS sounds like a **** B-Side of Mechanical bull. Almost the same synths, just boring songs, overproduced and without any memorable message or refrain or anything else. That's sad... not a single band I used to hear for decades has **** up that much in 2016 as KoL did with this one. Not even Biffy Clyro, and their last "masterpiece" is also as boring as not memorable.
    Just buy this, if you are a hardcore fan. For me the greatest disappointment in 2016 so far. :(
    Full Review »