“Mr. Brightside” may live on in karaoke bars until the end of time, but Brandon Flowers is ready to leave that phase of his band behind: In a new profile with The Times UK, The Killers frontman said that halfway into recording what was supposed to be their next album, they scrapped the project entirely.
“Halfway through recording I realized, ‘I can’t do this,’” Flowers said. “This isn’t the kind of record… I think this will be the… I don’t think you’ll see us making this type of music anymore.”
Presumably, “this type of music” is in reference to the ’80s new wave sheen of The Killers’ early albums like their 2004 debut Hot Fuss and its follow-up Sam’s Town. They seemed to tap back into that aesthetic on last Friday’s new single “Your Side of Town,” but Flowers says that these days, he’s more “fulfilled” by the acoustic-leaning Americana he made on the band’s 2021 album Pressure Machine.
“This is the crisis I’m in,” Flowers added. “I found a side of myself writing [Pressure Machine] that was strong. This was the guy I’d been looking for! I’m as proud of Hot Fuss as you can be for something you did when you were 20, but I’m not 20. So I’m thinking about the next phase of my life.”
Though Flowers acknowledges that The Killers’ hits “fill seats,” he’s more interested in pared-down sets and smaller venues in the foreseeable future: “It is just, well, at what point do I make that change?” he pondered. “Who in the band wants to do that too? No matter what, there will always be people who look at me and just think of ‘Somebody Told Me.’ And I get that. But I’m interested in evolving.”
Elsewhere, Flowers reflected on a recent incident in which The Killers brought a Russian fan onstage to perform drums during a show in Georgia, sparking a swarm of backlash motivated by the two post-Soviet countries’ contentious political history: “I had to calm an impossible situation,” he told The Times. “We want our concerts to be communal and I had no idea words I was taught my entire life to represent a unity of the human family could be taken as being pro-Russian occupation. We’re sad how this played out.”
New album or not, The Killers are currently on tour, and will return to the United States next month for a string of headlining dates including festival appearances at Sea.Hear.Now and Life Is Beautiful. Grab your tickets here.