Exploding the mirage
27 August 2020-
It may be hard to believe, but 2020's Imploding the mirage is only The Killers' sixth studio album... While the band took their time to craft this new set of compositions, the result is rather worth the wait!
The Killers exploded onto the scene in the early 2000’s with their perfect own-two punch which were “Mr. Brightside” and “Somebody told me”, two singles which not only introduced the band to a worldwide audience, launched their 2004 debut Hot Fuss, but arguably created a new sub-genre in rock music, one that was both very melodic and quite electronic-sounding, a mixture of sorts between old New Wave stylings and the Indie rock sounds of the era (see: The Strokes).
The band never left audiences’ radar since, although their subsequent offerings did not always match the incredible success the received from the get-go. Nevertheless, they always came with solid work, all of their albums being well received by critics and commercially successful. All the while, they carved themselves — and singer Brandon Flowers — a bona fide musical niche, one that is both very timely and somewhat timeless, insofar as a Killers song stands out, no matter what type of music you place next to it.
Then comes Imploding the mirage, which only got released a few days ago. To no one’s surprise, the album builds on the band’s previous sound, offering a highly enjoyable set of songs that are both well crafted — and utterly consistent with each other. If anything, production here is more orchestral than it ever was, with Flowers showcasing all his vocal range, and rather slow paced, slowly building melodies giving him every opportunity to do so. Take “Caution”, the album’s first single, a perfect example of Killers sound: melodic, electronic, vocal, symphonic. Or “Imploding the mirage”, which nicely concludes the set list with a beautiful, if slightly nostalgic sounding track.
For perhaps the more distinctive aspect of this new release is that it is reminiscent of Bruce Springsteen’s work — circa 1988. Indeed, it creates nice scenery, telling stories that are both personal and touching. But what they also have in common is a feeling that the band is taking stock of life, where they stand in it, have reached a somewhat peaceful vantage point and sharing what they saw/see. K. D. Lang and especially Weyes Blood featurings admittedly add a refreshing perspective to “Lighting fields” and “My god” (respectively), but they very much insert themselves in the painting that was drawn by Flowers’ and his bandmates.
A very nice painting at that…