Since their formation in 1979, KILLING JOKE have gone through numerous members and styles of music, from proto-punk and industrial to new wave to almost metal. The only constant members have been Jaz Coleman (vocals, keyboards and arrangements) and Geordie Walker (guitar). Last year, all founder members were finally reunited and continue to forge ahead in their own style.
After thirty-five years and fifteen albums, we get a compilation album that encompasses all of their styles, hits, misses and rarities. As you go through the three CD collection, you can hear the transformation of the band and hear the different styles and sounds that they gave the listeners to digest, so were easier to digest for the masses, "Requiem," "Eighties," and "Love Like Blood" all new wave classics, and then there were more harsh and visceral songs like "Exorcism," "Millennium," and "Democracy," all more industrial / metal sounding. The band has never bowed down to what was popular to get hits, they just go forward with their own ideas and put out what strikes their fancy, more bands should take their lead. They've also written a lot of political songs that still manage to be fresh today and KILLING JOKE never took the easy way to get hits by watering down their views or vision of what they were trying to get across to the listeners. Yes, the songs you know and love are on here, sounding fantastic and bringing back memories, but for the hard-core fan, the bonus disc is the real treat. You get songs from soundtracks, "Transient Place," "Drug," and "Hollywood Babylon," unreleased songs like "Sixth +Sun," "Timewave," "Intellect" (feat. Aboud Abdel Al) and "Feast Of Fools" to compilation tracks. The ten tracks could have been expanded more to include more rarities, but this is a great collection of songs that stand up to anything on their proper albums.
This hugely influential band, so influential that the riff of "Eighties" was famously "borrowed" by NIRVANA for "Come As You Are", should have a space in your collection not just for this compilation, but for all of their albums. Go out and grab this and be prepared to be in awe of how a band can change, but yet flow from one genre to another and it all makes perfect sense.