Rollingstone Magazine(Spain) November 2008-Thanks to Domerry

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"I am Christian and it imports a shit to nobody, they all speak of Brandon" Dave Keuning (guitar)

Brandon's Flowers band wants to eat the world, but their own country, USA, resist to they. They try it disguising as cowboys in their second album. And it don't work.Did they get it with "Day and Age" and without need to dress up?

An hotel room untidy, it also smells like tiger. A guitar out of it's cover. It's owner, with a white shirt tight and curled hair as Morrison, is lying, something away and barefoot. This is Dave Keuning (Iowa, 1976), U.S. guitarist of the band The Killers. Acting like a typical rock star until he calls to the roon service and he asked for a Sprite light. No alcohol or sweet (sugary) drinks, increasingly subversive in this society obsessed by weight. Sprite light. Were rockers allowed to drink soft drinks, low in calories? This detail summarized perfectly The Killers boys. They want it all. A rock and roll life that does not harm health. Sequined dress and touch the hearts of the average American. The drunk without a hangover. After all, they want the promised American dream.

Their next attempt to conquer the world comes in the form of third disc, called "Day and Age". After a time in their Vegas' studio, they finalize details of the album in London with yhe producer Stuart price (Les Rythmes Digitales), responsible to the Mdonna's transformation of Disco Empress with the album "Confessions in the dance Floor". Price and The Killers connection began with his Mr Brightside remix and producing a few of Bsides for Sawdust album. Then they realized that they had found what they were looking for when they saw the Brian's Eno and David's Bowie posters on the producer' studio.
When one asks Keuning about how it was work with Price, the answer, like the rest of the conversation, it's laconic: "Great. We rely on his opinions. Is intelligent and quick at what he does." Something that, apparently, does not have price when you record with Brandon Flowers, The Killers' singer, that as Keuning comments, is not very decisive: "Brandon leaves everything to the last minute. It's not that he is vague, is undecided. He improvises lyrics while we play.We think they are definitive, because that sound good, but he insite not worth it. He relaxes easily, So he needs locked in a room with paper and pencil to finish it."
The fact of that he has been in London recording with the British Price can be taken as a hint to think that with "Day and Age" The Killers have left the ode to North America of their second album, Sam's Town, and back to the "anglofilia" (Admiration or sharm towards English) of Hot Fuss. Some people have indicated the influence in this album of Bowie, which would substitute Bruce Springsteen presence of the previous one.
Keuning is not totally agree: " I don't see it like this, He has not influenced us more than the rest of our careers. All our albums has something of Bowie. I think people say that because we name one of our songs Spaceman, and it sound like Starman. But this album is a celebration of diferent things, some of our songs are more Pop, other more Rock and others something like island rock or tropical" one of his fauvorite songs is "Goodnight, Travel Well": "It's so sad, dark, but beautifoul at the same time". Flowers stated that it's dedicated to Keunings' mother, that pased away recently. For the first time, The Killers writed the album separately. They gave each other six months in order that each one was returning to their houses and was sending ideas via email. That works and in less than a year tey accumulated 40 sons. Finally they choose "the best 10". We will publique the others with legal downloads or B-sides, or Bonus tracks, like this people will buy singles too."
According to Keuning, while they compose the album they still listen the same artist that inspire they since the beginning: "U2, Smashing Pumpkins, Talking Heads and Genesis with Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins. We like the 2 and also their works in solitarily."

Day and Age will be launched in a complicated period, at the same tima that U2, Oasis, Kaiser Chiefs and Keane news works: "There are good albums with which to share this year; it will not be easy", says the guitarist. In addition, they share Price as producer. Are you concerned about you sound like? "I don't care Keane" snort "They can do what they want".

The Killers admit their new album is the most ambitious of their career. It doesn’t have the glam glitz of Hot Fuss or the stadium epic of Sam’s Town, but the band members assure that it’s the most risky and experimental. “This album is very important to us. We see it as an opportunity to grow”, explains Keuning. “We want to be more recognized in the US. We’re doing good in Europe, but we could be bigger in our country. We would like to be like U2”.

As a response to their admiration, the Irish band invited them to share stage during a concert in Las Vegas, plus, when they perform in Dublin, they send them a box or Guinness beer. Miraculously, they also managed to escape from the Gallagher’s sharp tongue. “ One of the reasons we got together as a group is because we were fans of Oasis. We liked them when we first met (with Oasis). Maybe they liked us too”. Who knows. At the same time, The Killers have earned a large list of enemies. Brandon Flowers criticized Green Day because the song American Idiot, offended his patriotism . Advised Thom Yorke, from Radiohead, he should compose songs because he was wasting his talent. And said that emos “Were dangerous” and he wanted to “beat those bands to death”. “We’re not starting a fight with emos. Some of them like what we do.”, says Keuning. “My Chemical Romance is a good band. But others, I’m not going to say which ones, sound all the same. And they are whiners”.

Keuning sustains that for Day & Age, they will no longer continue with the cowboy look that they show in Sam’s Town. “We started with the cowboy thing in the All These Things That I’ve Done video, directed by Anton Corbjin. The look was fun and we carried it for 9 months. During the tour we came back to be ourselves because we were a little bored with it. Anyway, I didn’t have a moustache like Brandon. I shaved. I chose freedom.”

I’m sure the will maintain their taste for the less discrete outfits. Like the gold lamé suit Flowers wore at Glastonbury Festival: “That suit was too much, it was incredible!”. It was tailor made for Brandon. We like to dress well. Brandon Flowers a peculiar artist. The front man of The Killers combine his inclinations for eyeliner and eccentric outfits with a conservative ideology. Is a defender of guns and sympathizes with George W. Bush. He’s a patriot and a believer, a Mormon as a matter of fact. When we asked Keuning if Flowers pester them with the Bible, the guitarist immediately woke up from his drowsiness. “What do you mean?” Asks very serious. Well, Is Brandon’s faith influencing the band. “Brandon never talks about religion, the rest of the band are not Mormons. He’s the lead singer, I don’t think it’s fair the amount of attention he dedicates to his religion. It’s clear that is unusual and that makes him an interesting story. But I’m Christian and no one gives a shit. The band has two members who are believers, but everyone speaks about Brandon. And no, he doesn’t bugs us with the Bible, no more than my parents did.

Change of subject: How do you live in Las Vegas?
You can find neighborhoods were you can live a normal live. The rest, to be honest, it’s very weird.

Will you make live recordings like Elvis, there?
We thought about it. Maybe in ten years. We also talked about having a residence in a casino.
Would you like to build your own casino?
My God… I don’t think so, really. Not even the Rat Pack had one! Las Vegas sets Keuning in a philosophical mood and when he speaks, he makes us think that maybe The Killers are living the true American dream: “I’m from Iowa. One day moved to Las Vegas, later on I went back home. But I constantly thought that I had to live in Las Vegas. I ended up doing it and then I met Brandon. We formed the band. It was destiny. I didn’t think it existed before, now I believe in it.


Their new album, Day & Age, will be released on November 25th, though Universal.


*** 1/2
The Killers
Day & Age
Universal

Tough record to finish the day, but it may work.

Got the impression that a certain insecurity surrounded the members of The Killers during the first listen of the record in front of the international press, not so much for the perception that they’ve made an irregular record, because it may be misunderstood. Divided opinions between the audience, but in general, surprise and a good vibe. With echoes of Bowie (not glam, funk) and Talking Heads, we can guarantee it will surprise you.

 

 

 

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