The Killers' Wonderful, Wonderful: What You Need To Know
It has been five years since The Killers released their fourth album Battle Born, during which time the band's members have taken some time out to each pursue side-projects of their own, including a second solo album from frontman Brandon Flowers, released in 2015.
This week though they reunite to unleash their fifth LP together. It's called Wonderful, Wonderful and here's everything you need to know about it...
A little background...
After taking a much-needed break to scratch various creative itches, word that a fifth album was underway began to emerge in October 2015, when it was revealed that the band had begun recording sessions with One Republic mainman Ryan Tedder. However, it later transpired that the band had switched producer on the recommendation of none other than U2 frontman Bono, who put the band in touch with Jacknife Lee.
The first new music from those session emerged in June this year with the release of lead-off single 'The Man, shortly followed by the unveiling of a title and release date for the band's fifth full-length offering.
Who''s producing it?
This time around the bulk of the production work is being handled by Jacknife Lee, but there are a couple of other contributors - namely Stuart Price, who co-produced 'Out Of My Mind', and Erol Alkan, who did the same on 'The Man'.
Any special guests?
The only guest appearance in terms of performers here is a rather unlikely one from Dire Straits guitarist Mark Knopfler, who contributes guitar parts to the album's parting shot 'Have All The Songs Been Written?'
There are however a few extra songwriting credits from the likes of Ryan Tedder, who co-wrote 'Life to Come', and a few samples borrowed from songs by the likes of Bob Marley, Brian Eno and Kool & The Gang.
What does it sound like?
Although it often feels like there are a broad range of influences at work on any Killers album, that seems to have ramped up here on an album with a lot of stylistic variety. The already-released single 'The Man', based around a Kool & The Gang sample, is as funky and danceable as you'd expect from a track co-produced by Erol Alkan, while 'Life to Come' begins as a downtempo balled before gradually escalating to a chorus that channels Joshua Tree-era U2.
'Out Of My Mind' is a lush slice of 80s-influenced pop, while the frenetic 'Tyson vs Douglas' features a lyric that recalls one of the boxing world's most famously unlikely results, set to a tune whose verse sounds like something Public Service Broadcasting might produce before taking a swerve into Killers territory with a huge, anthemic chorus.
At the other end of the tempo scale are songs like the swirling dreampop of 'Some Kind of Love' and the album's lush closing lament, 'Have All The Songs Been Written?', to which Mark Knopfler's unmistakable guitar licks add a touch of class.
Does it deliver?
While there's plenty of range on offer here, Wonderful, Wonderful manages to refine the winning Killers formula while still branching out into new territory here and there. After the many solo and side projects that the band's various have been involved with in recent years, here they sound like they're really enjoying getting the band back together and doing what they do best.
Wonderful, Wonderful is avilable in hmv stores now - you can also find it here in our online store.