When The Killers released their latest album, 2017’s Wonderful Wonderful, it featured the song “Run For Cover” which shouted out “fake news” in a moment of rare political rhetoric from the Las Vegas band. The cycle included interviews with bandleader Brandon Flowers speaking out about President Trump, saying that his typically apolitical presence changed by pure necessity. In an interview with NME at the time, Flowers said:
“You cannot say you’re not affected by politics, it’s seeped its way through. It seems inconceivable that Trump is gonna accomplish all of it and it’s a bunch of bullsh*t for lack of a better word. It sounds terrible that this person was elected but I got to believe that he’s either gonna get impeached or in three years he’ll be replaced by someone better. He’s not going to build a wall in three years.”
But even with Trump as a talking point for the last album cycle, the band’s first bit of new music in 2019 is surprising. “Land Of The Free” is a soaring ballad complete with choral backing, but lyrically, it’s the most directly political that the band has ever been. Flowers sings about border walls and gun violence, telling Zane Lowe today for the song’s premiere that the country’s violence toward people of color, the push for the wall, and the repeated mass shootings made it impossible for him to remain silent and to hold this song in. “I would start the song and then I would put it away and I’d say, ‘I’m not the guy to do this,’” Flowers said, “or I’d feel inadequate, waiting, somebody’s going to write this song. Then it just piled up … Las Vegas, Orlando, Parkland, and it just kept coming and I was just like, I have to get this out.”
Check out The Killers’ “Land Of The Free” above. Revisit why the band’s career keeps getting better with age here.
Update: The Killers have also released a video for “Land Of The Free,” directed by Spike Lee. Check that out above.