Having been a Killing Joke Fan since the first time I heard "The Wait" and "Wardance" played back-to-back on a college radio station in the early 1980s, The XXV Gathering was quite cathartic for me. Killing Joke has not spent a lot of time touring the USA in their long career, and their popularity assured that they wouldn't play the sort of intimate venue I enjoyed attending even during the heyday of my clubbing career. So, I never had an opportunity to see them. I am happy to see that they will be doing a tour in the US this Fall, and I will definitely attend one of their NYC gigs.
I've followed Killing Joke throughout their entire career from the 1980s when they virtually invented industrial metal, through their more avant garde heavy dance metal phase to their current metal/dark-wave intensity. And I love it all. The band has always maintained their fundamental musical core - based in simple but powerful melody, intense rhythm and passionate but somewhat detached and hoarse vocalization, yet they have constantly innovated, and even today they produce music which defies its own genres consistently and is only recognizable as... Killing Joke.
The live performance is very nicely filmed but pretty flashy. The venue is lovely, and the crowd - mostly young, but with some people from my own generation as well - has tremendous energy. Killing Joke is, not surprisingly, superb as a live band. And the love Jaz and his colleagues have for themselves and their craft is palpable throughout the entire film.
Although I did not really enjoy the lengthy Jaz Coleman interview very much, I appreciate his open-ness and powerful enthusiasm for the band that has been a major component of his life for so long.
Highly recommended for fans, or the curious.
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