The Killers- Cardiff Barfly - March 12, 2004

There's a palpable buzz in the air of a packed out Cardiff Barfly, because tonight, perhaps the hottest American band around "the Killers" are headlining. Hailing from LA they mix the sassiest eighties electro buzzes, with cutting edge bass and guitar rhythms and top it all off with excellently passionate vocalising from front man Brandon Flowers.

In an excellent opening the killers launch into songs like "Smile like you mean it" with its pleading arch chorus, then onto the spinning eighties retro of "Jenny."

On stage "the Killers" are magnetic, Flowers is an enthralling watch, singing and constantly straining every sinew to push his hands in the air in an act of fey Morrissey like stagecraft. He is flanked by the ice cool charm of the rest of the group, the shaggy haired David Keuning on guitars and Mike Stoermer on electric bass.

The highlight comes with "Mr Brightside" the EP of the same name is now sold out and its not hard to see why, a constantly whirring melody is pushed to the limit by emotive lyricism "Coming out of my cage/and I've been doing just fine/ gotta be down/ because I want it all," and strident building guitars. Then onto new single "Somebody told me" with its sublime Duran Duran esque sound it cant help but get the crowd moving. Sometimes the lyrics do let “The Killers” down for instance “Indie rock n roll's” chorus line of "its indie rock and roll for me, indie rock n' roll Is all I need" is plain poor, and well below their best.

But overall tonight the impression is of a band on the up, a band that can encompass beautiful eighties retro rhythms and stylishly weld them to modern sounding keyboards and crafty guitar shapes. Watch out for the Killers their time is now. (BillCummings).

Mini Interview:

How did you enjoy touring with Stellastarr* recently?
Brandon Flowers: We really enjoyed it we've been all over the country.

What do you have planned for the year?
BF: Well we're going back to America for a while now to put some hard work in over there. But we will be back in the summer to do the festivals and promote our new album that's released on the 7th of June.

Would you like to play at Morrissey's Meltdown festival?
Brandon Flowers: I'd Love to play with Morrisey (smile across his face) but we will see.

Do you feel it’s important to make music you enjoy firstly? Not to pander to the hyper machine around you? Also how do you think your sound has changed?
David Keuning: Oh yeah we would never pander to anyone else, we make music we like, and well we've had a real good reception in this country so far.

How do you think your sound has changed?
DK: Our sound keeps changing people try to pigeon hole you but we keep changing we've done all kind of different tracks in our time. We've even thrown stuff away that didn't fit in with our sound.
Brandon Flowers: Yeah there's got to be some kind of continuity to our sound at the moment as people are just getting to know us. We want to do a great first album, then the second album will be a little bit different and the third will be a total change. People may think they know our sound but it changes constantly, each song is different.

Many thanks to the band for answering these informal questions.