(From the West Briton newspaper, 31 July 2003.)


Here's Your Chance to Get The Joke




Last week Jane's Addiction and now Killing Joke - two bands who have come back with stunning albums after years away. The Joke are one of the few bands that can claim to have a genuinely unique sound. Between 1979 and 1985 they were perhaps Britain's most essential guitar band with a slew of alternative anthems from Requiem to Love Like Blood.

They've influenced everyone from Red Hot Chili Peppers to System of a Down, been covered by Metallica and sued Nirvana after Cobain nicked the riff from Eighties for Come As You Are (as a teenager he used to send them fan letters).

Now after seven years the original line-up is back augmented, ironically, by Dave Grohl on drums.

But it's not as if they've been quiet - singer/keyboard player Jaz Coleman has become an internationally acclaimed composer/conductor who has re-written the New Zealand national anthem while bass player Youth continues to be one of the UK's best-known record producers.

All the ingredients of old are back - the tribal drumming, Geordie's trademark scabrous guitar, Youth's bowel-quaking bass and Coleman's guttural bark.

Coleman's Arabic blood has obviously been boiling following recent world events judging by the angry invective aimed at the UK and US governments. If ever an album was made to soundtrack the Apocalypse it's this beauty.

Hopefully, the presence of Grohl - posterboy for the misunderstood - will gain the Joke a whole new audience.