Dave Keuning, lead guitarist and founding member of The Killers has made an attempt to step out of the shadow of his former band with solo effort Prismism.
Born out of the frustration of his song ideas for The Killers always being pushed to the bottom of the pile, Prismism is Keuning’s first attempt at anything separate from the band.
On the whole, the album is a decent solo effort. Sonically it is a departure from The Killers but there are elements that fans of the Las Vegas band will recognise. Synths and guitars are prevalent, and the guitar-heavy songs are generally the strongest on the record but go-figure for a lead guitarist.
The album gives Keuning the chance to showcase his musical talents. In The Killers he was limited to playing the guitar – by no means a slight on him, he’s responsible for some of the most iconic riffs and the soundtrack to my life, ‘Mr Brightside’ – but Prismism gave him the opportunity to play the keyboard and do his own vocals.
The album opens with ‘Boat Accident’ and begins with a synth intro. The guitar riff takes over and then you hear Keuning’s vocals for the very first time. It’s a catchy track, and the first of many on the album that deals with the topic of relationships and love.
Lead single ‘Restless Legs’ is the strongest on the record. The guitar-driven track is an upbeat one with synth overlays and a catchy chorus.
The title track is a bit of a let down. It’s fair to say that Keuning’s lack of vocal variety holds the album back at times, especially when any variety usually comes in the form of distortion effects which take away from the song. This track follows the same beat and tempo through and to be honest it’s a bit of a chore to stick with it, which is a shame as lyrically it seems to go beyond surface level.
‘Gimme Your Heart’ is an acoustic number that misses the mark. An opportunity to showcase Keuning’s range of skills it has the same pitfalls as the title track: it keeps the same tempo throughout.
Album closer ‘Hope and Safety’ is a really pleasant acoustic track, and though far from the strongest on the record is a really nice way to close the album. Prismism is at times promising, at others bloated. Accepting it for what it is, this album is The Killers B-Sides.
Give Prismism a listen right here.