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The Killers - Hot Fuss


Review: Jack Foley

IF YOU'RE looking to gamble on one of the breakthrough bands of the moment, then Las Vegas indie rockers, The Killers, would be a pretty safe bet for value-for-money.

Their eagerly-anticipated debut album, Hot Fuss, looks destined to become one of the year's best releases, thanks to its gritty mix of 80s laced rock anthems, and 90s orientated indie-pop records.

Recent single, Mr Brightside, is typical of what to expect - a ridiculously infectious record, that sounded like a band having fun for a change.

It may have contained elements of the sound coming out of New York right now, but there was something a little fresher about it, courtesy of mixed-up lyrics such as 'it was only a kiss, it was only a kiss'.

The rest of the album follows suit, only occasionally drifting into mundane territory. Indeed, if anything, it delights all the more for its willingness to broaden its horizons.

The band may cite references such as Psychedelic Furs, Interpol, Duran Duran, The Cure and Blondie, but they're not content to merely copy the sound, or even make it sound contemporary.

Yes, there are elements of StellaStarr* in some of Brandon Flowers' powerhouse vocals, and David Kuening's occasionally edgy guitars, but there is a whole lot more besides.

All These Things That I've Done, for example, throws in some gospel, courtesy of a choir, which realises one of Flowers' long-held ambitions, while final track, Everything Will Be Alright, sounds like The Cure's Robert Smith on prozac.

Both are notable for changing the pace and focus of the album - you're aware that you're listening to something a little bit different with each new track that arrives.

And Hot Fuss gets off to a stonker, with Jenny Was A Friend of Mine, a glorious Psychedelic Furs throwback which finds the band at its most StellaStarr* sounding, not to mention The Rapture (courtesy of the synths).

Heck, StellaStarr* even recorded a track called Jenny themselves, so it surely can't be a coincidence that The Killers recently supported them on their UK tour.

Of 11 tracks, there are probably eight which hit home straight away, which makes this an undeniable classic in the making.

While the UK basks in the glory of Franz Ferdinand and Razorlight, they should keep an eye on their US counterparts - for The Killers are no less exciting and listeners may just find they've hit the musical jackpot!

Track listing:
1. Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine
2. Mr Brightside
3. Smile Like You Mean It
4. Somebody Told Me
5. All These Things That I’ve Done
6. Andy, You’re A Star
7. On Top
8. Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll
9. Believe Me Natalie
10. Midnight Show
11. Everything Will Be Alright

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