I have to admit I didn’t really give The Killers a chance when they first came out. Went I originally heard Somebody Told Me, I just clumped the band with the other pretentious bands that emanated from New York whom all seem to start the band with “The.” Then when Mr. Brightside came out, again, I really wasn’t feeling it, although I did give the song a chance due to the video featuring Eric Roberts and a Kate Bosworth look-a-like. Eventually the song grew on me, and so did the absurdity of the chorus of Somebody Told Me. And I absolutely love All These Things I’ve Done when I first heard it. Eventually I had the urge to buy their album Hot Fuss. But hear in lies the problem, after dropping $2.97 for those songs on iTunes, I didn’t want to spend another $15 to get the whole album. But this week, the band re-released the album with three additional tracks. Normally I would ream the record companies for such practices like I have in the past (Record People Are Shady I, II, III, IV), but once this worked in my favor. As I strolled to my local Best Buy to pick up the album for $9.99, I noticed you could actually pick up the original release for $13.99. For those keeping track at home, that’s four more dollars for three less song. Thus again proving my assumption the music industry is the worst run business ever.
Hot Fuss, if you haven’t been able to tell by the singles already, is an 80’s synth-pop influenced album, accompanied by mostly absurd lyrics and catchy wordplay like my personal favorite, “I got soul, but I’m not a soldier.” The album starts off with the seriously Jenny Was a Friend of Mine, a song about a lost love, “We had a fight on the promenade out in the rain. She said she loved me, but she had somewhere to go.” This then transitions into the big hit, the upbeat sounding Mr. Brightside. Smile Like You Mean It sounds like something that should be in a Cure tribute album. But the lyrics are more clever than Robert Smith could devise such as, “Save some face, you know you've only got one.”
The wordplay don’t get more absurd than the chorus to the Somebody Told Me, “Well somebody told me you had a boyfriend who looked like a girlfriend that I had in February of last year.” It fun to sing along to, but once to realize what you saying it seems creepy. Who want a girlfriend that looked like some chick’s boyfriend? But anyways. For how weird the chorus to All These Things I’ve Done is, the song of itself is a poignant song about redemption, “Over and in, last call for sin. While everyone's lost, the battle is won with all these things that I've done.”
The band goes for over the top bombast with Andy You’re a Star which deals with the popularity of high school as, “Andy, you're a star in nobody's eyes but mine.” The also slow things down for the original album closer Everything Will Be All Right. There was sort of a feud the band had with The Bravery that I never got until I heard Change Your Mind. Brandon Flowers, lead singer of The Killers, has a point for calling the other band copy cats because The Bravery totally ripped off their sound from this song.
As for the new songs the best is Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll which sounds nothing like anything else on the album. The band borrow the crunching guitars from a Coldplay song, but Flowers approaches the singing like that of a British punk band from the late 80’s. The Ballad of Michael Valentine follows the life of a professional gambler around the country but the name has been changed to protect the innocent. Under the Gun goes faster than most of their songs and sort of features the bands mantra in the chorus “Kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, kill me now, again and again.” This song makes a better finish than the original one and is probably a killer when performed live. (Yes the bad pun was intended)
Song to Download – All These Things I’ve Done
Hot Fuss: Limited Edition gets a on my Terror Alert Scale.