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The Killers - Sawdust: B-sides & Rarities

2008-01-02 13:33
Opener "Tranquilize" has lead singer Brandon Flowers trading philosophies with no less a legend than Lou Reed over some super-sized arena rock riffs last munched on by Meatloaf while a kiddies choir chimes out a chorus that could be an interlude from Queen’s "Flash Gordon". It’s so bad it’s brilliant.

As is their mascara splashed makeover of "Shadowplay" which guts the Joy Division classic of all its post punk paranoia by translating it into a pretty vacant little indie-disco ass shaker that Love & Rockets might’ve written. And then there’s "Romeo and Juliet" which sounds like John Cougar Mellencamp giving Mark Knopfler’s corpse a karaoke-d up kiss of life.
Fabulous. But what about the other 14 'rarities'? "Sawdust". Yes, all of them. Only Killers sycophants will want to hail Hot Fuss leftovers like "Show You How" and "Under the Gun" as ironic ballroom blitzes or unreleased cut "Leave the Bourbon on the Shelf" as a gleefully blank garage glam groove. Ditto the desire to read an 'Abbey Road' version of the "Sam's Town" title track as some sort of Beatles deconstruction. It’s just a banal piano ballad.

And as for Jacques Lucont’s "Thin White Duke" remix of "Mr. Brightside"…no, there’s nothing Bowie about it. Toss in a half-baked Americana jam-o-rama ("The Ballad of Michael Valentine") and a colour-by-numbers country rock cover ("Ruby, Don't Take Your Love to Town") with a premature synth-pop ejaculation ("Where The White Boys Dance") and you’ve got proof that this is one "Glamorous Indie Rock and Roll" band waiting for their major label contract to expire before really going indie.

- Miles Keylock

Once you remember that The Killers is a Las Vegas band then this lucky packet of B-sides and binned album outtakes almost starts to make sense.

What to read next: Kalahari

david 2008/01/09 4:10 PM
lou reed the lou reed single rocks.
Mike 2008/01/16 11:24 AM
What...?!? [no bad language or hate speech, please] How is this possible when the review sucks so much...? Why are there so many crap reviews on the web about such a good album???
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