The Killers: Battle Born

14 Nov

I want so badly to loathe Battle Born. The Killers blew up in 2004 following the release of Hot Fuss and everything seemed to suggest that the band were on a mission to make very fresh, edgy and raw music, but successive albums have been on a downward slide toward irrelevance primarily due to Flowers’ ego and increasingly trite writing.

It’s true that Flowers’ writing is no fresher here than it was on Sam’s Town or Day & Age, using the same forced emotional palette that lacks any sense of authenticity and connection, but Battle Born is irritatingly undeniably perfect in every other way. Taking stylistic cues from every facet of 80s music, the album is remarkably cohesive, strident, and above all else catchy which is no mean feat given that the band had to work with 5 different producers due to scheduling issues. First single Runaways is a prime example, hiding Flowers emotional stagnation beneath a layer of fine storytelling, the song is a ballsy Springsteenesque pop rock confection that will reingratiate the band with its many disillusioned fans. While Here With Me is a beautiful synthy power ballad borrowing tried and tested hooks and accents (Bryan Adams anyone?) that guarantee the song’s success.

All in all, Battle Born is a promising release from the band signalling a return to better days, an outstanding album.

 

Ed.

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