Contact theSOPAbout theSOPSupport theSOPWritersEditorsManaging Editors
theSOP logo
Published:December 12th, 2006 08:05 EST
The Killers Release Sophomore Effort

The Killers Release Sophomore Effort

By Jessica Baird

If you’ve been keeping up with Brandon Flowers and company since their debut smash Hot Fuss two years ago, then you know how Flowers views their second effort Sam’s Town.

"It’s the best record of the past 25 years," Flowers would say while checking in with journalists and Web sites. Well, I hate to spoil the party, but the best record in a quarter-century it is not. A decent follow up to an album that was nearly impossible to improve upon-it most certainly is.

Trading in Morrissey for Springsteen, and rock clubs for arenas, The Killers attempt to make a statement for the ‘every man’ that lives away from the glare of the Vegas strip. Songs about the open road, running with the devil and heartbreak bog down the album and cause the listener to skip over several tracks-an unimaginable thought while listening to Hot Fuss.

Even though the Vegas-bred quartet have achieved the unattainable notion of selling millions while still being favorites among indie rockers and jaded music critics, they are still nowhere near Bono or Boss status.

Listeners want a rockin’ dance record from The Killers, not songs about the quest for the American dream.

When the opening notes of lead-off track "Sam’s Town" begin, the listener immediately knows The Killers have set off on making their epic statement, complete with sweeping guitars and a shout-out to "Grandma Dixie."

The album is just a quest for the Springsteen grail, disguised as a concept piece for the small town where The Killers now call home. Sam’s Town is, in fact, the name of a casino away from the notorious Vegas strip.

A short track called "Enterlude" follows at No.2, and Flowers and company, "hope you enjoy your stay." This stay in Sam’s Town includes several tracks that seem to bleed into one. "Bling (Confessions of a King)" "For Reasons Unknown" and "Read My Mind" although they are similar to the fast-driving, glam rock fueled formula The Killers perfected on Hot Fuss, they don’t produce the same intensity.

However, there are a few tracks showing off what The Killers do best, such as the windows down, hair blowing anthem "When You Were Young" and the equally thrilling track "Bones."

But all in all, Sam’s Town just isn’t nearly as much to fuss about.