You're forgiven if Kings of Leon's backstory, wherein the three brothers Followill used rock 'n' roll as a means to rebel against the conservative Christian values instilled by their preacher father and somehow landed a major-label deal, seems too much like a fairy-tale beginning. Given that the family band—the trio of Tennessee-based siblings are also joined by cousin Matt Followill—is now living the rock 'n' roll dream, conquering massive festival stages worldwide and headlining summer amphitheater shows stateside, the whole thing seems ripe for a stirring, inspirational biopic. Surely if such a film were ever to come to pass, the evolution of the Kings' music would echo the story, with the schmaltz of their glossy, cavernous arena rock obscuring the promise of what was once an excitable, roots-rooted garage rock unit filled with soulful Southern spirit.
The Black Keys, on the other hand, showed a new maturity with this year's Brothers, which ranks among the year's best records and is assuredly the Keys' most diverse. From the start, singer/ guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney have been an inarguably talented but limited bare-bones blues-rock act with a fondness for distorted riffs, primitive percussion and howled moans. Brothers, however, finds the Keys exploring infinitely more textures while coming to terms with their pop sensibilities. Turns out they're quite good at working with both, producing a wealth of well-written rock tunes that shift away from the template of their preceding albums while unmistakably remaining The Black Keys.
The Whigs, an amorphous Athens rock trio, opens at 7:30 p.m. —Spencer Griffith