The Killers Turn Bright Eyes’ “Four Winds” into Dance Anthem

Killers boogie down to Bright Eyes “Four Winds.”

Videos by American Songwriter

Photo by Dustin Cohen

How about those Killers, huh? First they appear on the cover of our November/December 2008 issue, then they cover American Songwriter faves Bright Eyes on their latest single from Day and Age, “Spaceman,” which is backed with a dance-ified version of the 2007 Bright Eyes Cassadaga track “Four Winds.”

To do so, Killers frontman Brandon Flowers had to learn a lot of lyrics (wonder if he memorized them all?). The practicing Mormon also had to find the moxy to sing this line, which occurs in the song’s third verse: “the Bible’s blind, the Torah’s deaf, the Qur’an is mute, if you burn them all together you’d get close to the truth…”

The Killers have turned in some high profile covers before, including Dire Straits’ “Romeo and Juliet,” which Flowers has called “one of the best songs I ever heard.” We agree.

Check out their stroll through the mind of Conor Oberst below, and let us know what you make of it.


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  1. Not heard the original,……. this sounds great……the boys at their best……great addition to their live show….just seen them again in Cardiff,Wales…..keep up the standard,Brandon! Jim, Bath UK.

  2. The Killers do write plenty of their own songs. And they make covers of songs like this one. Maybe you’re a purist Heather, but this kind of track will bring plenty of deserved attention to CO and isn’t that a good thing? Maybe not if you revel in the xclusive character of the CO Cult. But the cat’s out of the bag, things change and such is life…

  3. I’m not into the conor oberst cult, but i know a terrible, terrible song when i hear one. sounds like a christian high school band from circa 1998.

    maybe they should cover “mr. brightside” and call it a day.

  4. Fantastic cover, and I actually like it better than the original for its style and feel….um, Heather, The Killers write nearly everything themselves…go figure…

  5. I have to say I kind of agree with Heather. Although I do recognize that The Killers write plenty of their own music, this cover really does not capture the emotion that is usually in all of Oberst’s songs. Can’t say I am a huge fan of The Killers either. Compared to the original, I think that this song is terribly lacking. And for those who said they hadn’t heard the original, I highly suggest that you go and check it out, if you like what you hear check out other songs like “A Balance Beam” as well as “Bowl of Oranges.” Or even “Haligh, Haligh, A Lie, Haligh.” When it comes down to it there are just too many great songs by Bright Eyes to list here. Although I know Bright Eyes isn’t for everyone, I find them to be one of the best folk rock bands out there and they are lyrically amazing. Check them out, I highly recommend them.

  6. Let me start off by saying that Oberst has unparalleled lyrical prowess. However the two songs are so drastically different, they cannot be fairly compared. Sans the lyrics, it’s like trying to compare Taylor Swift to Jay Z. In other words it just shouldn’t be done, both versions deserve equal amounts of your praise and affection.

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Lyric of the Week | Daniel Martin Moore > March 30, 2009