Meh. Thats my honest opinion. It's not quite great, it's not quite bad either. There was a time when I hated The Killers. I was more snobbish than usual, despised their bland jock-rock sound and unfairly lumped them in with the vile, disease-ridden Kaiser Chiefs in a bucket of musical fail. However, reappraisal came a couple of years ago when I found myself liking a couple of songs here and there, particularly the rocking "When You Were Young". The Killers were saved from the bucket and dried off. "You're ok" I told them. I listened again to "Hot Fuss" and decided I had been a fool to dismiss them so easily.
However, I honestly and unbiasedly didnt like their new single "Human" when I heard it. Over time though, it grew on me. Its quite endearing in an 80s new-wave way. Even the much debated lyrics: "Are we human?/Or are we dancer?" didnt bother me as it seemingly has bothered the rest of their fanbase.
Disappointment spread like a dropped ice-cream at Disneyland when I listened to "Day And Age". Its just...meh. "Human" is undoubtedly the strongest track which is worrisome considering that it took so long to grow on me. The other tracks are instantly forgettable if not bad enough to make me condemn this album outright. I quite liked "A Dustland Fairytale" but maybe it stood out so much because the previous track "Joy Ride" was so mind-numbingly awful, it's space-reggae sounding like an even worse version of Dexys Midnight Runners' "Come On Eileen".
But look! REDEMPTION! Somehow, the final track on the album (well, if you don't count the now-mandatory bonus tracks) "Goodnight, Travel Well" manages to break out of the blandness and is genuinely as beautiful as it is brilliant. It's slow and gloomy, dripping with despair and angst. It certainly made me smile after sitting through so many sub-par tracks.
As for the aforementioned Bonus Tracks, they are better than most of the main album songs. "Forget About What I Said" in particular is quite good. In conclusion, its a disappointing album but maybe it will grow on me in time. For now though, its their worst album so far. Please inject some emotionality into the music guys. "Goodnight..." is so good because it has genuine emotional punch, like their early material. Its just vacuous stadium pop now.
For the iPod playlist: "Human", "Goodnight, Travel Well."
Verdict: ** (2/5)