Although the new single from the Cold War Kids is called “Louder Than Ever,” their new album is anything but that. In fact, many of the highly melodic songs on “Mine Is Yours” are devoid of the angst that first propelled the band to popularity with the song “Hang Me Up To Dry” in 2007.
Singer Nathan Willett says he just has less to be angsty about these days.
“I mean, I’ve gotten married,” he says. “And this was kind of the first time we’d had a long stretch of being home, reconnecting with our friends and getting back to a normal state of living.”
Willett also credits this normal state of living with a shift in his lyric writing.
“You kind of get the real life story back in, which I felt really was missing on the second record,” he says. “I got to spend a lot more time creating something more cohesive, and I feel like this is in some ways the first thing that we’ve done that just fits together.”
Willett says some of the credit for the band’s polished new sound goes to producer Jacquire King, who is best known for bringing the Kings of Leon to a wider audience.
“Definitely I think it flattened a lot of the kind of spastic and jerky rhythms and things that we do,” says Willett.
Cold War Kids
House of Blues
15 Lansdowne St., Boston
Other hot tickets
Friday, 8 p.m.
Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory
Gainsborough St., Boston
Free, (617) 585-1100
You know that Phoenix song, “Lisztomania”? It’s about 19th century Hungarian pianist Franz Liszt, who was a bona fide rock star. Combining flashy style with serious skill, he set a bar for fame and discipline that few have matched since. This is the first in a series of concerts celebrating Liszt’s 200th birthday, all of which will feature students paying tribute to the King.
Saturday, 7 p.m.
246 Tremont St., Boston
This satirical singer/songwriter got his start on YouTube; but unlike so many accidental successes from that site, he was talented enough to leverage his sudden fame into a legit career. His experience with fame has darkened his edge a bit: One newer song, “Art is Dead,” wonders if his whole generation isn’t just a bunch of attention whores. –Matthew Dinaro