Retro Rock – a series part one

So around the early 2000s a trend started to emerge where bands monikered with the definite article “the”, plus some retro groovy name, would break into the mainstream and sound similar but charm irregardless of the fact that, it has all been done before.  I was completely on the hook for this craze and I thought in an effort to update more frequently and combat writers block I would start a series explaining just why I thought these bands were so great.  Up first, Las Vegas Synth rock extraordinaire The Killers.

Now the Killers have been around and prominent since 2004 but I thought I would go back to their beginnings and highlight the album that I first fell in love with “Hot Fuss”

This particular album holds special prominence for me as it played in heavy rotation during my high school graduation/first semester of college.  I absolutely adore this record, from the early on set with “Jenny was a friend of mine” this band demonstrates something special.  Heavy synthesizers are displayed throughout the presentation and according to lead vocalist and front man Brandon Flowers were once all that the Killers were about… until he realized that his music needed crunchy guitars and the rest was history.  “Jenny” is a moving story that really captures the Killers’ flair.  The synth breakdown and the unrelenting drumming never disappoint.  Moving on the song “Mr. Brightside” holds a special place in my heart as one of my favorite songs of all time.  The story told along with the wink and nudge lyrics will get you.  Most of you readers will probably have heard this song from the heavy rotation it garnered from the radio, but the genius behind the melody is that the song captures an ephemeral flair.  All at once the synths and the instrumentation present Las Vegas as only a future stadium rock band could.  I love this song.  Another great song to check out would be “smile like you mean it” a great song that has a undeniably catchy hook.  The hook is repeated and changed and played with but overall the song is a lesson in how to change up but enjoy repetition. I want to highlight one more track which thankfully also became a single and made it into heavy rotation on the radio.  “all these things I have done” is a perfect pop song.  The hook and the guitars are great, but the breakdown really takes the cake.  “I have got soul, but I am not a soldier” is just such a perfect lyric and sung so carelessly it warms the heart and steals the show on a stellar first effort album.





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