Review: The Killers – Pressure Machine

“I never really gave up on breaking out of this two-star town.”

When Brandon Flowers sang those words back in 2006, he completed a rock ‘n’ roll rite of passage: that of penning a great escapist anthem. The album he was working on at the time, the sophomore Killers LP Sam’s Town, was in part an homage to Bruce Springsteen, so it made sense for there to be a song like “Read My Mind” that channeled some of the pulling-out-of-here-to-win energy of Born to Run. When Flowers sang that song, you could hear in his voice the yearning to get out and find something better. You didn’t know where he was going, but you felt like he was probably never coming back.

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Review: The Killers – Imploding the Mirage

The Killers - Imploding the Mirage

Did The Killers just make their best record?

Conventional wisdom about The Killers—at least in the critical community—is that they peaked on their first record, delivered a few iconic hits and a bunch of filler, and then went off on an ill-advised journey to become this generation’s U2 (if this generation’s U2 were fronted by Bruce Springsteen, that is). People adored the glitzy, hedonistic pop tunes on 2004’s Hot Fuss because they were undeniable. They still are: there’s a reason “Mr. Brightside” kills at every wedding you’ve ever been to. But go forward in this band’s catalog and you’ll find fewer and fewer champions for each of their ensuing albums. 2006’s Sam’s Town, at least, is regarded as something of a lost classic. 2008’s Day & Age also has a generally positive reputation for its playful, all-over-the-place vibe—though its ardent fans are fewer and farther between than Sam’s Town’s. 2012’s ultra-bombastic Battle Born has its defenders (including yours truly), but also tends to get written off by music critics, casual fans, and Brandon Flowers himself. And Wonderful Wonderful is regarded by most as something of a dud (also not by me).

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The Killers Talk With NME

The Killers

The Killers talked with NME about their latest album and what’s next:

“You know when someone makes a record and they say that they have 50 songs and they’re going to release another record? Well, we really are!” laughs Flowers. “We’re going to release another one in about 10 months. We’ve already gone back into the studio with Rado and Shawn. I’m excited. It might be better than this one.”

The Killers Talk With USA Today

The Killers

The Killers talked with USA Today, and guitarist Dave Keuning will be returning to the band.

”Mirage” marks the first Killers album without guitarist/co-founder Dave Keuning, who left the band in 2017 to pursue a solo career. But drummer Ronnie Vannucci Jr. insists there is no ill will, and says they’ll be reuniting with Keuning in the studio this month. 

”The tides might be changing a little bit for the better. The four horsemen ride again,” Vannucci says. “We’ll see what happens. As we get older, priorities change and people need to do life things that don’t include playing in a rock band. I totally get that. I think we’ll look back and say that was a much-needed respite for everybody.”