I just saw the Killers in Atlantic City and it was EPIC. Say what you will my cute little indie snobs, but they put on an incredible show. Not only that but every song makes me feel something and I LIKE THAT. It got me thinking about the band and how envious I am of the constant inspiration Brandon Flowers seems to siphon from that beautiful city of nighttime lights and seediness: Las Vegas.
Anyway, the Killers have a few continuous themes in their songs (family, reclaiming past awesomeness, wanting to breathe that fire again), but they also seem to have a crystal cut vision for every aspect of their brand/image. Brandon Flowers is a front man in the truest sense—not only does he provide the epic voice and dreamy looks, he writes most of the songs and constantly reinvents himself, almost to the point of foppishness, with every new album.
See: the clean cut, baby faced, Hot Fuss era Flowers in fitted black suits morph into the mustachioed yet still dapper (even in a lariat) Sam’s Town Brandon. He takes it down a notch for Sawdust: it’s grittier and simpler, but then in Day & Age he re-emerges in full metro “Spaceman” force, hiding that photo-ready mug behind sleek yet absurd costumes. Finally, for their latest album Battle Born, he keeps it real and possibly ready for actual street fighting with moto jackets and a pretty sweet side-shave haircut. (Can you tell I love this man?)
It can get a little hard to keep track of, and some might argue that it detracts from the authenticity of the music, brah, but who gives a shit? I love it. It’s part of his inspiration; he’s a showman and a performer AND a musician. This blogger wrote a little something I came across in my “research” that I thought was pretty cool:
“I am sure there are some people who would dismiss him as a David Bowie wannabe or something, but to me, he was amazing – a show-off who wasn’t an asshole, a clotheshorse who taught me how to overdress for any/every occasion. If I could make a Faustian bargain and become him, I would give it some serious thought… and then I’d definitely do it and not look back, even for a second.”
I think it’s incredible how he takes the whole sound, look, and experience and packages it. He takes Vegas and throws it at us. It takes balls and clarity of vision. And that is what’s so inspiring about Brandon Flowers and the Killers. I hope he realizes that the simple fact of him gleaning inspiration is inspirational itself, and we can all continue to make sure that merry still goes round…