The Killers should have plenty of room to play
Article Launched: 09/14/2007 12:00:00 AM MDT
The Killers guitarist Dave Keuning remembers the band's first show in El Paso all too well.
The show took place in July 2004 at the now-defunct T-Lounge on Texas Street just as The Killers were embarking on their quick rise to fame. Many of those lucky enough to be at the show remember it as a good show in a tiny venue.
"It was a great crowd, but it was put together in, like, a high-school gym, and it was really hot," Keuning recalled during a telephone interview from Belfast, Northern Ireland, where the band was performing last month. "We have good memories of El Paso the first time around, and we've been wanting to come back to that area ever since."
The band makes its triumphant return to the Sun City on Monday at the Abraham Chavez Theatre. That's a venue much more suited for a band like The Killers, said fan Valerie Muņoz of Central El Paso.
"We saw them when they played at the T-Lounge and really enjoyed them, even if they acted too cool for school playing at a small venue," Muņoz said. "I'm looking forward to seeing them again. They put on a good show, and now they're playing at the appropriate venue."
This summer, the band has been busy playing summer festivals in Europe, something Keuning said can be a better experience than playing theaters and arenas.
"I can't complain -- we have really good fans who come to our shows -- but festivals are usually a little bit better because of the atmosphere," Keuning said. At festivals, "people have planned camping out and getting drunk or high. Shows are sometimes better than festivals. Non-festival shows are a little more intimate because the people there are there just to see us."
The Killers were formed in 2002 in Las Vegas by Keuning, singer-keyboardist Brandon Flowers, bassist Mark Stoermer and drummer Ronnie Vannucci Jr. Their 2004 debut, "Hot Fuss," was met with almost immediate success. The band's albums -- including followup effort "Sam's Town," which was released in October -- have sold more than 8.75 million copies.
Although the band's debut album brought comparisons to new wave and British pop, "Sam's Town" marked a different direction. Keuning said the sound on the second album was a conscious effort by the band to step away from the sound of the first, but also showed how the band is evolving.
"We didn't really say, 'Let's be different in this way.' We wanted to make it a little different," Keuning said. "There was a lot of different stuff that we never ended up recording that people may never hear. It's admittedly easier for a lot of people to point out the differences, but we were trying to make the best album we can."
Keuning said the band is hardly ever short on song ideas, but there's no way of telling what the next album may sound like.
"Sometimes (the ideas) come from playing your instrument on your free time, whether it's Brandon on the keyboards or me on the guitar," Keuning said. "We'll come up with some ideas and try and practice, and sometimes we'll have an idea that we spend a whole practice on, and sometimes something may stick. Everybody tries to figure out whether there's some kind of recipe, but it could be us in sound check and somebody plays a riff on accident and it turns into a song."