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Music: The Killers

The Killers are a rock band from Las Vegas, made up of Brandon Flowers (lead vocals, keyboard), Dave Keuning (guitar, backing vocals), Mark Stoermer (bass, backing vocals), and Ronnie Vannucci (drums/percussion, backing vocals). To date they have released the following albums:

  • Hot Fuss (2004)
  • Sam's Town (2006)
  • Sawdust (2007; a compilation of B-sides)
  • Day & Age (2008)
  • Battle Born (2012)
  • Direct Hits (2013; contains two new songs)

For an indie-rock outfit, they've been quite successful, selling 15 million albums worldwide (and with Sam's Town and Sawdust hitting UK number one).

Their sound has been (very accurately) described as "more Eighties than The Eighties." All their albums save Sam's Town have been essentially synth-driven indie-rock, with the influence of New Wave, particularly Duran Duran, painfully obvious. Sam's Town was different, but also very much Eighties, being Heartland Rock/Americana In The Style Of The Boss, with some more synth.

The band took a break after years of touring, during which time both frontman Brandon Flowers and drummer Ronnie Vannuci, unwilling to slow down, released their own solo albums entitled Flamingo and Big Talk respectively. Most of the reviews agree that Flamingo was So Okay, It's Average, while Big Talk was better received.

The band released Battle Born in September 2012, nearly four years after their last album as a group.


Their music include examples of:

  • Album Title Drop: Inverted with Day & Age. The songs were written before the album was named, and the name was chosen in part because the band realized they'd used that phrase in two songs ("Neon Tiger" and "The World We Live In").
    • Also present in "Flesh and Bone" and "Battle Born", on Battle Born.
  • Alien Abduction: "Spaceman". Amusingly, in an article about The Killers, Q Magazine had an interview with an expert on alleged real-world alien abductions, who was quite pissed that the song bore so little resemblance to the common alien-abduction claim.
    • An alternative interpretation is that it is actually talking about an attempted suicide, with the alien abduction being simply due to ambiguity on the part of the one telling the story (who is implied to be somewhat delusional).
      • One of the more widely accepted interpretations is that the whole song is about their meteoric rise to fame and the distance that puts between them and their loved ones.
      • Or about the conflict between religion and science...
  • Badass Mustache: Drummer Ronnie Vannuchi usually had one of these, as seen in the page picture.
    • Flowers on occasions. Opinions differ on whether it makes him badass.
    • Dianna Agron
  • Bad Santa: The videos "Don't Shoot Me, Santa" and "I Feel It In My Bones".
  • Ballad of X: "The Ballad of Michael Valentine".
  • Broken Record: "I got soul, but I'm not a soldier, I got soul, but I'm not a soldier..."
    • "It was only a kiss/How did it end up like this?/It was only a kiss, It was only a kiss!"
  • Careful With That Axe: Brandon's scream before the solo in their Joy Division cover, "Shadowplay".
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Drunk Dave.
  • Creepy Child: The children singing "kick the can, kick the can, skipping, blackjack" in "Tranquilize".
  • Christmas Songs: One of the band's traditions is that, every year since 2006, they write and record a Christmas song for Product Red. This being The Killers, many of these songs are Crowning Music of Awesome.
  • Crowd Song: The chorus of "All These Things That I've Done."
  • Dem Bones: The music video for "Bones".
  • Fading into the Next Song: From Sam's Town, "This River Is Wild" -> "Why Do I Keep Counting?" -> "Exitlude". Sweet heavens.
  • Gentle Giant: Bassist Mark Stoermer could be labeled as one.
  • Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Guitarist Dave Keuning is a male example, if that popular video is anything to go by.
  • Heavy Meta: "Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll".
  • Incompatible Orientation: The reason behind the narrator's unrequited love for the Jerk Jock in "Andy You're a Star", although an Alternate Character Interpretation is that Andy is equally in love but, with High School being what it is, he's dating The Beard. Considering that "Andy" is sometimes a nickname for "Andrea" (or similar), the incompatibility could even be going the other way.
  • Lyrics/Video Mismatch: "All These Things That I've Done" appears to be about the band trying to run out on their girlfriends... while wearing cowboy outfits... and then the women pursue them with boomerangs. And something about a trailer park. The UK version, on the other hand, is pure Sweet Dreams Fuel.
    • It's actually about the band (in cowboy outfits) stealing a marquee sign from what appears to be a Russ Meyer-esque burlesque troupe (or something like that), only to find out that said burlesque girls can and do thoroughly kick their asses. The video is put together very out-of-order, though, and since that's not clear at first glance, you can be forgiven for having absolutely no idea what the hell is going on.
  • Madness Mantra: From the afflicted lover in "Under The Gun": "Kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now..."
  • Murder Ballad: The "Murder Trilogy": "Leave the Bourbon on the Shelf", "Midnight Show", and "Jenny Was a Friend of Mine" (released in the reverse order, but clearly telling the story of an angry break-up, murder, and being questioned by the police).
  • Prequel: The new song "Miss Atomic Bomb" is a prequel to "Mr. Brightside".
  • Recycled IN SPACE!: The band have stated that Day & Age is "like watching Sam's Town from outer space".
  • Refrain from Assuming: "All These Things That I've Done" is frequently known as "I Got Soul", and has even been covered using this title.
  • Sanity Slippage Song: "Losing Touch" seems to be this, although, for the most part, it's a fairly calm song compared to other examples of the trope.
  • Shout-Out: At their performance of "Human" at the EMA Awards, Brandon added in some lyrics from "Bring on the Dancing Horses" by Echo and the Bunnymen.
    Bring on the new Messiah
    Wherever he may roam
    First I'm gonna make it
    Then I'm gonna break it
    Till it falls apart
    Hating all the faking
    Shaking while I'm breaking
    Your brittle heart
    • The name of the band itself is a shout out to New Order. The video to New Order's 2001 single "Crystal" had the song mimed by a group of actors instead of the actual band; going by the logo painted on the drum set, this Fake Band was called The Killers.
    • Battle Born is a shout out to their home state of Nevada, nicknamed "the Battle Born state" (because it was admitted to the Union in 1864, during The American Civil War).
  • Silent Bob: Mark Stoermer is known as one of these—he's the quietest of the band, usually speaking just a few words in their interviews.
  • Stalker with a Crush: "Andy, You're a Star".
  • Studio Chatter: An indecipherable bit of this at the beginning of "Leave The Bourbon On The Shelf", maybe Brandon talking to Dave.
    • You can catch some more at the end of "Sam's Town" (the song, not the album itself), which is similarly hard-to-understand.
  • Subverted Rhyme Every Occasion: "Mr. Brightside".
    Now they're going to bed
    And my stomach is sick
    And it's all in my head
    But she's touching his chest now
  • Surreal Music Video: "Spaceman" and "Read My Mind" in particular.
  • Tim Burton: Directed the Music Video of "Bones" and "Here With Me".
  • X Meets Y: Brandon Flowers described "Human" as Johnny Cash meets the Pet Shop Boys, and an interview in the UK Observer stated it was a cross between New Order and Bruce Springsteen.

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Kings Of LeonAlternative IndieKilling Joke

alternative title(s): The Killers
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