led The Killers to be known as “best British band from America,” which turned out to be a wakeup call for Brandon Flowers. He began to consider his family and who he really was. The result was a new album, Sam’s Town
(2006), and the beginning work that’s based on Flowers’ own life and beliefs.
was met with mixed reviews; critics wondered what it was really about and what Flowers was reaching for. He says there’s no shrouded meaning: “Sam's Town
wasn't some love letter to America or overreaching mythic thing. It was about me,” he explains bluntly."I sang about Grandma Dixie and my brother being born on the Fourth of July. Guess what? My grandma's name is Dixie, and my brother was born on the Fourth of July, 1969. The album is very real. I was being honest.”
, The Killers’ most recent album, released this September, is perhaps the most heavily based on Flowers’ life. References to his hometown of Las Vegas are frequent and clear. The song Deadlines and Commitments was inspired by comedian Jimmy Carr’s (somewhat joking) comment
that the next big album would be about America’s economic woes. Miss Atomic Bomb
darkly refers to the nuclear tests conducted outside of Vegas that grew into a tourist attraction in the 50s (Flowers’ mother, who died of cancer in 2010, witnessed many of these explosions). Even the album’s name holds personal importance for Flowers. “[Battle Born] stems from the Nevada State flag,” Flowers explained in an interview with Richard Dawkins
. “We’re from Nevada. ‘Battle Born’ is written on the flag. Nevada became a State out of the Civil War. But that’s not what the record is about. It’s just a part of our heritage, a part of our growing up, seeing that flag everyday.”