The Killers Slay Their Uneven Dynamic by the Show's Finish

Brandon Flowers isn't much for between-song patter onstage.
Brandon Flowers isn't much for between-song patter onstage. (By Daniel Berehulak -- Getty Images For Mtv)
Saturday, April 28, 2007

Frenetic lights and lots of color -- the Killers have learned that if the performance alone doesn't have any momentum, bright shiny things help. The Las Vegas-based, Brit-influenced Killers stopped at the Patriot Center Thursday to support their second album, "Sam's Town," and during the 90-minute show proved they could more easily deliver discrete moments of brilliance than build up a thrilling evening as a whole.

The rock band's live act has improved, however, since its 2004 debut. Or, more specifically, frontman Brandon Flowers has. The singer-keyboardist has gotten more comfortable working the stage, roaming and dancing without the stiffness that dogged him early on. What Flowers hasn't developed is the ability to establish a rapport with the audience; his silence, combined with a lack of flow from one song to the next, resulted in awkward periods of nothingness between numbers that cooled the sold-out audience nearly every time things started warming up.

When the Killers trotted out monster hits such as "Somebody Told Me," "Mr. Brightside" and the new "Bones" -- all accompanied by arena-rock flamboyance -- this shortfall was quickly forgotten, though. And, strangely, it disappeared entirely during the band's first encore. High-energy tracks including an excellent cover of Joy Division's "Shadowplay" and the irresistible sing-along "All These Things That I've Done" streamed one into the other, culminating in a fabulous finish. Next time around, the Killers should get it just right.

-- Tricia Olszewski

© 2007 The Washington Post Company