This River Is Wild
Label: Island Records
Emboldened by a '04-'05 run that rendered them one of the biggest bands on the planet, the Killers drop their follow-up to Hot Fuss like a water balloon from the ninth floor -- splash! Sam's Town is a concept record, concerning the lives of down-on-their-luck folks itching -- at times dying for -- a little break. Often it's the music that picks them up: brash horns, whizzing synths and hooks as bright and eerie as the lights of the Vegas strip. This LP doesn't nail that mix of U2/Springsteen/Stones like its predecessor, losing some steam because of limp lyrics. But it's still quite a ride.