Hope for a new album from The Killers seemed futile for a while around 2010, when the band gave up some tour dates due to lead Brandon Flowers’ mother dying of cancer. For a time afterward, the band was on a hiatus that could have become permanent, but after getting it together, The Killers announced Battle Born which will be officially released on September 18 by Island Records. Battle Born will be the band’s fourth studio album, and, just in case anyone was getting worried the album would never drop, today, The Killers’ Youtube channel leaked the first single from the album.

I’d expect a peppy single for the band’s first track off any new album, but “Runaways” begins far more gently, using minimal music and only Flowers’ voice to tell us a summer story about a teenage couple and a night where nearly anything seemed possible. The song eventually picks up musically, but there is something very eighties in the synth and the sort of story Bruce Springsteen loves to tell that totally pops up all over the “Runaways” track. I’m sure we’ll get a video in the coming weeks, but for now, the music tells the story in and of itself.

Often, bands come up with less throwaways if they spend a little extra time between albums, but that isn’t always the case. I find “Runaways” to be a solid song, but it doesn’t make me think the band has topped some of their bigger singles like “Somebody Told Me” or “Mr. Brightside.” I guess we’ll have to wait and see what kind of traction the lead single off of Battle Born gains.

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