Kings Of Leon on the first time they heard ‘Sex On Fire’ on the radio

Aprilia Rine

Kings Of Leon on the first time they heard ‘Sex On Fire’ on the radio

Kings Of Leon have opened up about the first time they heard their track ‘Sex On Fire’ on the radio.

  • READ MORE: The NME Big Read – Kings Of Leon: “We’re happy and we love each other”

While appearing in a new interview with USA Today‘s Ralphie Aversa in support of their latest track ‘Mustang’ and their forthcoming album ‘Can We Please Have Fun’, Kings Of Leon – comprised of Caleb, Jared, Nathan and Matthew Followill – opened up about their 2008 hit ‘Sex On Fire’.

“I remember I was at a Mexican restaurant with my wife, we were having like a tortilla soup and margaritas, and I think Andy our manager called me and said ‘Hey, there’s an interview we need you to do like right now’,” recalled Caleb.

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He continued: “I picked up the phone and it was Zane Lowe and he was debuting ‘Sex On Fire’. When he introduced the song, even like hearing it over the phone, I was like ‘Oh man, this does feel different’. So we got shots to go with our margaritas.”

‘Sex On Fire’ was the lead single from Kings Of Leon’s fourth album ‘Only By The Night’. The track earned the band their first Number One single in Australia, Finland, Ireland, and the United Kingdom, charting at the top spot on digital downloads alone in the latter country, before its physical release.

On September 2009, the song became Britain’s second most-downloaded digital single ever. It landed the Number One spot on the US Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart and Number 56 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it the band’s second highest-charting song there on the former chart.

The band earned their first Grammy nominations in 2008 with the track in the categories for Best Rock Song and Best Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group, with the group winning the latter. ‘Only By The Night’ was also nominated for Best Rock Album.

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Caleb previously voiced his dislike for the song, telling NME back in 2008: “I just had this melody and I didn’t know what to say. Then one day I just sang “This sex is on fire” and I laughed. I thought it was terrible, but the rest of the band were like, ‘It’s good, it’s got a hook.’ I was like, ‘Fuck off!’ but I ended up writing it.”

In an 2021 interview with NME as part of The Big Read, Caleb re-evaluated his comments on ‘Sex on Fire’, softening his stance and admitting that the track allowed the band to transform from rock outsiders to stadium mainstays.

“There comes a point when you can either be proud of what you’ve accomplished or you can still sit back and be sour over it,” he said.

He continued: “My sour side was never because of the music itself, it was because I thought we should have gotten that kind of recognition earlier on in our career.”

Reflecting on the huge success of ‘Only By The Night’, he added: “When lighting strikes, it strikes. There’s no way you can recreate it or bottle it up. Without that album, who knows if we’d still be making records today.”

The band’s ninth full length album, ‘Can We Please Have Fun’ is set for release on May 10 and is available for pre-save/pre-order here. The upcoming LP will mark the band’s ninth full-length studio album, and comes as the follow-up to 2021’s ‘When You See Yourself’.

Elsewhere, Caleb recently revealed that he feels “completely fulfilled” by the band’s forthcoming album ‘Can We Please Have Fun’.

They are also set to kick off a massive world tour later this year in support of the LP. Visit here for more information and visit here to buy tickets.

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