“The gods are smiling on us tonight,” a particularly jaunty Brandon Flowers said early in the Killers‘ headlining set at Firefly on Sunday (June 21). “I heard you had a little trouble yesterday. We’re trying to make up for it the best we can.”
The “little trouble” Flowers alluded to was the complete evacuation of the Dover festival, due to a lightning storm that lit up the Delaware sky on Saturday and ended the scheduled Kings of Leon headlining show before it began. Fortunately, the weather was clear and humid on Sunday at the festival, and the Killers made up for the bad weather with a brilliantly bombastic performance that included a pair of gracious tributes to Kings of Leon.
Midway through the show, Flowers asked the crowd, “You guys like CCR?” before diving into a faithful rendition of “Bad Moon Rising.” He then asked who in the audience liked Kings of Leon, and the roar of a response led into a rollicking version of the Tennessee group’s “The Bucket.”
Three songs later, Flowers and guitarist Dave Keuning led an acoustic sing-along of the first verse and chorus of “Use Somebody.” Flowers may have appeared a bit unsteady with the lyrics, but the impromptu cover earned the admiration of the still-smarting Kings of Leon diehards in the crowd.
Otherwise, the Killers did at Firefly what they are designed to do: deliver oversized, overly catchy anthems to a sprawling audience. The Las Vegas group arrived 23 minutes late to the main stage-closing set, but the result was a general condensation of the band’s hits: a joyful “Human” was followed by a pummeling “Somebody Told Me,” and Flowers — celebrating his 34th birthday on Sunday — bounced around the stage like a man on a mission to dazzle, the veins bulging in his neck and a breathless smile frequently on his face.
The Killers are a premier festival act, and brought something special to Firefly on Sunday in the wake of some nasty Saturday weather. The Followills would be proud.