Brandon Flowers WayHome Stage, Oro-Medonte ON, July 26

Brandon Flowers WayHome Stage, Oro-Medonte ON, July 26
Photo: Geoff Fitzgerald
Even without three quarters of the Killers, lead singer Brandon Flowers fully embodied the band's Las Vegas-channelling vibe of glamour, grit and everything in between. Promoting his newest LP, The Desired Effect, Flowers proved that he still has the chops that his band boasted a decade ago when they burst onto the scene with Hot Fuss.
Harnessing the album's momentum by faithfully recreating its one-two punch opening of "Dreams Come True" and glitzy lead single "Can't Deny My Love," Flowers and his eight-piece backing band grooved as they expertly recreated the sounds of the '80s, with twinkling synths and honking horns for a full-bodied sound. Even "Crossfire," the lead single from his middling debut solo venture Flamingo, landed with the crowd where it may not have when it was first released in 2010.
Flowers' hometown of Las Vegas has always played a large role in his music and aesthetic, and the city's penchant for overindulgence was present as well, in the form of a handful of covers. His new take on Killers hit "Jenny Was a Friend of Mine" featured a slower, twangier arrangement that breathed new life into the tune, but back-to-back covers of Killers track "Read My Mind" and Robert Palmer's "Simply Irresistible" rarely strayed from the originals.
Regardless, it showcased his band's skill for painstakingly recreating the arrangements, and still wasn't enough to overshadow Flowers' bombastic presence. Flowers has always felt like the centre of attention, but having his name in proverbial lights has never felt more fitting.