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Direct Hits

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Album Review

Almost ten years after "Mr. Brightside" helped turn the Killers into new millennial rock sensations, the time has come for a hits collection. Calling the compilation Direct Hits — a punning title that feels timeless but has rarely been used before, a nifty encapsulation of the group's style and attributes — the Killers cannily use the singles-centric conceit to showcase the band at their overblown best, emphasizing their arena-sized neo-new wave just slightly over their Springsteenisms. Both are on display on the two new songs — "Shot at the Night" and "Just Another Girl," songs that sound as if U2, Springsteen, and the Cars created a supergroup in 1988 — but the main benefit of Direct Hits, especially for those listeners who have always doubted the skills of the Killers, is how the operatic ambitions of Sam's Town feel not so extravagant when bookended by selections from Day & Age and Battle Born. All three of the albums — which are represented by three cuts a piece — sound strong here but what really has lasted are those singles from 2004's Hot Fuss, especially the initial breakthroughs "Mr. Brightside" and "All These Things That I've Done," which now seem to capture a particular moment in time and yet also transcend it.

Biography

Formed: 2002 in Las Vegas, NV

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Few bands in the early 2000s rose so quickly to the forefront of pop music as the Killers. With a mix of '80s-styled synth pop and fashionista charm, the band's street-smart debut, Hot Fuss, became one of 2004's biggest releases, spawning four singles and catapulting the group — particularly their dandyish, 22-year-old frontman, Brandon Flowers — into the international spotlight. Hot Fuss reveled in the garish glitz of the band's native Las Vegas, spinning tales of androgynous girlfriends...
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Direct Hits, The Killers
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