Tuesday, 25 September 2012

The Killers' 'Battle Born'

I wasn't sure what to expect from The Killers' 4th album. I have to say I don't think there's been THAT much coverage in anticipation of the new material (apart from a few live events and the odd mention in a tabloid...) but aside from that they haven't been overly excelling themselves on the media front.

After the debut- 'Hot Fuss' which included many a hit and thereafter, the awesome 'Sam's Town' which included 'When You Were Young' and 'Bones' and then most recently, 'Day and Age' which contains the storming single 'Human' the four piece had a lot to live up to.

Most significantly, they've stayed true to their roots and loyal to their usual style. 'Battle Born' continues with the American rock genre. Everything from the artwork of the front cover featuring an American 50s car driving through what looks like the Grand Canyon to the phrasing of content "In this transient town/ waiters and dealers trying to get their foot in the door" - Heart of a Girl, The Killers have nailed what they do best.

This does, however to a certain extent make me wonder whether they're capable of branching out at all. The similarity of their tracks including 'Flesh and Bone' is a little too much like 'Human', whilst 'The Way it Was' although very reminiscent lacks imagination.

 However, 'Runaways' is obviously a strong choice for a single release. 'Flesh and Bone' is a natural second release from the album with such a strong vocal line, curious intro and indulgence in instrumentation, including the use of more electronic drumming, strings, a choir and more production than perhaps their earlier stuff. Other tracks which encourage me to give the album a chance include 'A Matter of Time', 'Battle Born' and 'Heart of a Girl' - a soft ballad that strips everything down to a hypnotizing, wandering tune. Overall the sound is much more mature and perhaps slightly reminiscent of a more 80s feel than anything as modern as Day and Age. Perhaps more of an album for the Dad ( or for those Dads that love Brucey Springsteen).

Like the Killers? Then why not try Alabama Shakes or Jack White?

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