Hot Fuss

Studio Album by released in 2004
Hot Fuss's tracklist:
Jenny Was A Friend Of Mine
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Smile Like You Mean It
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Somebody Told Me
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All These Things That I've Done
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Andy, You're A Star
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On Top
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Change Your Mind (Limited Edition Bonus Track)
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Belleve Me Natalie
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Midnight Show
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Everything Will Be Alright
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Glamorous Indie Rock & Roll
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The Ballad Of Michael Valentine (Limited Edition Bonus Track)
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Under The Gun (Limited Edition Bonus Track)
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Hot Fuss review

Las Vegas foursome The Killers introduce a perfectly tailored new wave-induced art rock sound on their debut, Hot Fuss. Sounding like the bastard child of Simon LeBon and Robert Smith, lead singer Brandon Flowers covers some lyrical ground including jealousy, paranoia, ambition, stalkers, AIDS victims, androgynous girlfriends, betrayed lovers, and murderers; the sex appeal and the boyish charm are perfectly in place as the rest of the band accents his rich, red-hotness just so.

This sparkling post-punk/synth-rock album opens with Dave Keuning’s rocking guitars and pounding drums on Jenny Was a Friend of Mine. Brandon Flowers recalls Robert Smith with his almost British, high, slightly off-kilter vocal style. The synthesizer lines are razor sharp, and The Cure’s influence drenches this opening winner without drowning it in imitation. Mr. Brightside is even more catchy than its predecessor, sounding like the perfect track for a reflective scene or the closing credits of a John Hughes film about 80s romance. Mr. Brightside has faster drumming and bass lines courtesy of Ronnie Vannucci and Mark Stoermer, who shift impressively from their massive beats on Jenny Was a Friend of Mine. For most of the public, The Killers’ calling card has been the frenetic Somebody Told Me. The chorus about androgyny and ex-lovers grabs listeners instantly. By contrast, All These Things That I’ve Done starts with Flowers singing quietly like John Lennon. Keuning and the rhythm section then take over and carry the song in the Scottish rock nature. Midway through the song, The Sweet Inspirations provide gospel vocals for a surprising, unique rock experience. If not for Flowers’ louder and more textured vocals (as compared to Bernard Sumner), On Top could easily be an early New Order song. Vannucci and Stoermer are a dynamite duo on rhythm, and the beat is consistently intense but never overwhelming.

Viva Las Vegas! We could have sworn nothing good ever came out of that town, well, except for gambling, strippers and high-tech magic shows. But now they've given us the best Britpop band that's not really from Britain. Just note that The Killers sound like a delicious puree of Blur, Pulp and The Cure, loading Hot Fuss with stylish synth-pop effects and big blazing choruses. On every track, Flowers sings with passion, sincerity, and high energy, making each song a fresh recording far from formulaic. Hot Fuss is a multi-faceted, consistently interesting and enjoyable synth-rock album with strengths across the songwriting, singing, and playing fields. The hooks are glorious and immediate, and the feet can’t stop moving. Missing out on The Killers’ debut album could be bad for your health.