Although The Killers are sharply dressed hipsters from Las Vegas, they are far from the typical lounge act.
The Killers’ June 2004 debut album release, Hot Fuss, is a fusion of indie rock and synth beats which create a dark, dance-pop sound reminiscent of ’80s chart-toppers, Duran Duran. Sounding like Interpol on a heavy dose of Zoloft, The Killers create dance rock accepted by the masses. Hot Fuss mixes heavy guitar riffs, energetic rhythms and the raspy hollers of singer Brandon Flowers’ vocals.
The music of The Killers is so enthralling that the lyrics seem secondary. Filled with themes of jealousy and paranoia, contrast the catchy melodies.
The band’s first single, “Somebody Told Me,” is a tale of an androgynous girlfriend. Flowers sings, “Somebody told me that you had a boyfriend/ Who looked like a girlfriend/ That I had in February of last year.”
“Mr. Brightside” is the standout track of the album. The Killers take what could be a bland pop song and produce a panicked tempo. Flowers’ desperate howls match the rushed pace.
“Jealousy, turning saints into the sea/ Swimming through sick lullabies/ Choking on your alibis/ But it’s just the price I pay/ Destiny is calling me/ Open up my eager eyes/ ‘Cause I’m Mr. Brightside.”
The Killers have recently paired with director Sophie Muller to direct the U.S. version of the “Mr. Brightside” music video. Muller is known for her innovative video ideas for bands such as No Doubt. The video should be released after Thanksgiving.
Flowers and guitarist David Keuning originally came together over a mutual appreciation of the band Oasis and have used such influences to create a fresh sound. New Order’s music video for “Crystal,” in which New Order plays a fictitious band called The Killers, was the inspiration for the name. With bassist Mark Stomermer and drummer Ronnie Vannucci, The Killers create music as glittery as their Sin City roots.
The Killers first gained popularity overseas and began touring in London with the bands British Sea Power and Stellastar. In October 2003, Island Def Jam Music Group signed The Killers, and they began to gain attention in the United States as well.
The Killers have been nominated for several awards, including MTV’s Best Emerging Artist Award and the Shortlist Music Prize for Artists Achievement in Music.
The Killers will performing at Masquerade on Saturday at 8 p.m. Tickets are $12 in advance.