Battle Born review by The Killers

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  • Released: Sep 18, 2012
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 7.9 (62 votes)
The Killers: Battle Born

Sound — 8
Do you like 80's-inspired desert rock? Do you like loose concept albums? If so, The Killers' new album "Battle Born" may just be for you. Much of the album takes on the pulsing, dream-like tone that can make the listener feel paradoxically warm and lonely. It is mostly an album of singles, yet the sound comes alive most when listened to in full. The concept of the album is driven partially by the subjects love and loss, but arguably more by the wide palette of emotions showcased by taking these themes and turning them into a 12-sided die, examining the effects of the death and creation of relationships. While the genre of the album may be somewhat limited, it is explored in depth, which makes for an excellent listen.

Lyrics — 7
Dealing with themes of love and loss, The Killers are certainly not on new ground. The lyrics are - well, nice. They fit the tone of the sound very well, and while they might be considered repetitive to some, that's sort of what ties the album together. Every love is like the last in a way, yet every love is something new, as well. The vocals are very well executed throughout, with Flowers really exploring his upper range throughout most of the album, which becomes more lyrically diverse as the tracks progress. For some, this album will be lyrically repetitive and uninteresting, but for others, the cohesion will be compelling. Songs that diverge from the sort of sappy tone present on certain tracks are "The Rising Tide", "Heart Of A Girl" and "Battle Born", which are more inspirational, and they are a good break, even though they come toward the end of the album.

Overall Impression — 8
This album is going to be relatively hit or miss with listeners. The group draws from new influences, like Springsteen and 80's synth-pop for most of the tracks. If The Killers are your favorite band, you may end up disappointed, because "Battle Born" is a fairly big step away from their past material. Many Killers listeners however, old and new alike, will find this album fresh and compelling. My favorite tracks from my first two listens are the title track "Battle Born", "The Rising Tide", "Heart Of A Girl", and "The Way It Was". I will repeat, though, the album is much better as a cohesive work of art rather than individual tracks; the waves of emotion that are present throughout may very well leave the listener awash in awe of the sonic textures they have just experienced.

32 comments sorted by best / new / date

    "Grey-Mane or Battle-Born?"
    Friggin beat me to it. I'LL ASK AGAIN, THEN.
    The review by the UG Team is absolutely awful. Regardless of your feelings on the album, there was no real talk about the music. I just saw whining about the genre and production. The user review was much more professional, even though i would like to see more about the music and individual songs.
    "I really did not enjoy this album for the most part, and it was hard to pick a song and say I actually liked it." Yet you still rate the album a 6.3? It's like people are afraid to give anything below a 5 on here.
    Does anyone else hear the lead guitar line from Mr. Brightside at about 3:45 in the background of Miss Atomic Bomb?
    It's supposed to be there. Miss Atomic Bomb is a "prequel" of sorts to Mr. Brightside. Miss Atomic Bomb is the female "character" in Mr. Brightside.
    Vic Magnetic
    This album is what you'd call a grower....You listen to it over and over and each time it gets better with each listen....think later Tragically Hip albums or even more lately Blue Octobers "Any Man In America". Concept album anyone?
    I've only listened to it 2-3 times, but I'm really enjoying it so far. My favorites are probably Matter of Time and Miss Atomic Bomb.
    I love desert rock and themes of love and loss. Sounds like this is gonna be a hit for me!
    I never log in to comment, but the UG Team review is probably the worst I have ever seen on here.
    I made an account just to say that UT's review is terrible. I'm going to avoid this album just because I don't want to be reminded of this review.
    Haven't listened to it, but The Killers always seem to know what they're doing. Woot.
    Joshua Garcia
    Really could not get into it. I liked The Killers that brought me Smile Like You Mean It and Shadowplay. Not this. And to think I waited 16 months for this album. =(
    Wow. Some of the worst reviews I have ever seen on anything. Please know what you are talking about before you write a review. Most of the negative things highlighted in these reviews are what makes The Killers unique. The album is fantastic, as is all their previous ones. That is all. Thanks