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  • Muzik First


As the pandemic clutched the nation in 2020, words began dropping out of frontman Brandon Flowers, forming little poems based on growing up during the 1990s in the tiny, remote Utah town of Nephi. Poems, it turns out, that was perfect for lyrics. The rest of the band took on the challenge of turning those poems into songs. The result is their new 11-track album titled “Pressure Machine,” marking a new smaller sonic direction for the band known for arena-ready rock songs like “Mr. Brightside” and “The Man.” “It was our first time not being ashamed to say the words ‘concept album,’” said drummer Ronnie Vannucci. “This time, we had a focus. We had an objective. We knew what it was supposed to be. And it was our job to sort of build around that and create a home for it.” The songs are told from the perspective of various townspeople, examining everything from “hillbilly heroin” to homophobia, strained marriages, failure and depression. “Most of these are actual characters that I grew up with or experiences that happened during my time in Nephi,” said Flowers, who was influenced by Sherwood Anderson’s “Winesburg, Ohio” and “Pastures of Heaven” by John Steinbeck.

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