It couldn’t start on a duller or more self-important note. The Killers are in preachy form on the title track for Wonderful Wonderful, loudly lamenting the “motherless child” over some by-the-numbers guitar work. It befits neither their talent as a band (which have been waning since album one) nor their stature, and we don’t know about motherless children but if some mothers chose to remain childless then our ears might have been spared this nonsense.
The Killers feel like a band for the alt-right this time round. The Man is one of those songs that can be appropriated by any quarter, but more likely to be taken sans irony by anti-feminists – it’s chorus opines the virtues of being “the man”, which apparently entails having gas in the tank and money in the bank. Even if it’s supposed to be tongue-in-cheek with its glam-rock production, it fails miserably; where Tame Impala succeeded with a subversive tone, the audience for The Killers is highly likely to skip any soul-searching and most likely wank off to this in front of a mirror instead.
It’s rather fitting that the next song they offer is one called Rut. There’s no doubting that this is exactly what The Killers are stuck in, unable to break out into the anthemic sound they aspire to, nor the pop crossover Brandon Flowers managed rather well in his solo effort, or indeed becoming anything other than a U2-lite for Generation Y. In fact, Flowers goes full Bono on the straight-road of Life To Come, even going as far as recommending we ‘dropkick the shame’. We’ll tell you what we’d like to dropkick, Brandon, and it isn’t shame. Well, not ours anyway.
It is without question that this is a horrendously boring album, which even the Editors-like guitar of Run For Cover can’t raise from its muscle-bro flatline (“he did her dirty but no one died” – oh right, cool, that makes it ok then). The Killers’ name seems appropriate in that they’ve assassinated their own sense of credibility, and just when you think they’re about to gain some lustre on Some Kind Of Love, out pops the line “you’ve got the soul of a truck on a long distance haul”. If anything, it’s The Killers that are like an 18-wheeler at the moment, all boorish and imposing as they jackknife into this fuming mess. Wonderful Wonderful? We think the fuck not, lads.