The Killers are perhaps most known for their anthem “Mr. Brightside.” Interestingly, they released a sequel/prequel to the song many years later. During an interview, The Killer’s Brandon Flowers revealed the song was partly inspired by Elton John’s classic rock songs and partly inspired by a photo of a woman in a cloud-shaped bathing suit. Here’s a look at the follow-up to “Mr. Brightside.”
The Killer’s Brandon Flowers said their ‘Mr. Brightside’ sequel had an ‘epic’ title like an Elton John song
There was once a beauty pageant called Miss Atomic Bomb. According to the Irish Examiner, a famous photo of one of the pageant’s winners struck Killers frontman Brandon Flowers. “There’s a very iconic picture of the first ‘Miss Atomic Bomb,’” he said. “A mushroom cloud-shaped bathing suit is covering her breasts. It’s a beautiful picture of this woman in the desert.”
Meeting Bernie Taupin, the lyricist of many Elton John hits, made an impact on Flowers as well. “I met Bernie Taupin for the first time and I felt like he was giving me a little bit of advice. He didn’t say much to me, just asked, ‘Do you like titles?’ And I started thinking about Elton John songs, and found out Bernie wrote the titles first. Like ‘Mona Lisa and the Mad Hatter’ or ‘Candle in the Wind’, it’s already epic.”
Flowers decided to use the phrase “Miss Atomic Bomb” for a song title. “‘Miss Atomic Bomb’, when that was rattling in the brain, it’s so strong. I tied it into ‘Mr. Brightside’ so that was very easy for me to write.”
How The Killer’s ‘Miss Atomic Bomb’ connects to ‘Mr. Brightside’
Flowers revealed the song reflects a sense of closure following the events of “Mr. Brightside.” “It doesn’t keep me up at night, I’ve moved on, but there is a sense of closure in a weird way,” he told Time Out Dubai. It’s in the lyrics: ‘The dust has settled/My eyes are clear.’”
“Miss Atomic Bomb” and its video have some more obvious connections to “Mr. Brightside” as well. For example, the bridge of “Miss Atomic Bomb” reuses a riff from “Mr. Brightside.” In addition, the video includes the characters from the love triangle in the “Mr. Brightside” video.
How did the world reacted to the two songs?
Which song performed better — “Mr. Brightside” or “Miss atomic Bomb?” “Mr. Brightside” reached No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, remaining on the chart for 38 weeks. It’s The Killers’ only song to hit the top 10. The song’s parent album, Hot Fuss, was a success as well, reaching No. 7 on the Billboard 200 and remaining on that chart for 98 weeks.
On the other hand, “Miss Atomic Bomb” didn’t reach the chart at all. It didn’t hit Billboard’s Hot Alternative Songs chart either. It’s parent album, Battle Born, was more successful, reaching No. 3 on the Billboard 200 and remaining on the chart for 18 weeks. While “Miss Atomic Bomb” is connected to “Mr. Brightside,” it didn’t match its success.