By Brandon Specktor
The Killers gave us a taste of Battle Born, their first new album in four years, with the self-explanatory propulsion of “Runaways.” The new track is sparkly and nostalgic, and, like any taste of something sweet, left us hungry for more. Now, we’ve got more, thanks to some fan footage of the band’s tour-opening set in Asheville, North Carolina last night, where they debuted three brand new songs!
As with any bootleg, the sound here is a little murky, but clear enough to provide us a promising sip of the Battle Born brew. “Miss Atomic Bomb” rockets from that signature Killers slow-bleed opening into a hand-clapping, bass-kicking triumph that shows Brandon Flowers trying on his best Springsteen swag to reminisce about love amid Nevada nuke tests.
We’ve already gotten a taste of “Flesh and Bones’” baroque synth blippery in the Battle Born album trailer, but the track quickly builds into the Killers’ most infectious new chorus—at least, infectious enough that everyone in Asheville already seems to know the words without a proper track existing yet.
And finally we get to dip our toes into the “Rising Tide,” the most consistently upbeat of these three new offerings, whose dancey ebullience even makes room for a few “hallelujahs” as the stage lights go fittingly supernova overhead.
Battle Born is due out September 18 on Island. If you didn’t snag tix to one of The Killers’ sold-out East Coast gigs, there’s still time to catch them at Delaware’s Firefly Festival before they ship off to Europe for a minute.
Check out “Rising Tide” below.