(From VMG, UK online pop culture magazine, June 2005.)
Killing Joke's Jaz Coleman Takes No Prisoners!
Killing Joke - Interview with Jaz Coleman, JC
Killing Joke? "Who-hell-they?" you say. For the uneducated amongst us this is the band that created the rock scene as we know it. "Bollocks"- you cry. Let me clue you up, without these 'jokers' there would be no Nirvana as you know it therefore no Foo Fighters, maybe no Queens Of the Stone Age (God forbid), No Slipknot, no Rage Against The Machine and therefore no Audioslave...the list goes on. This group has been in existence since 1978, a date which doesn't register on my life scale let alone these charlatans donning black, playing electric with a screwdriver and calling it rock. They don't understand what's in the bones of this way of life.
With over 15 studio albums, Coleman himself with 39 recordings, this man is more than a rock star rather a rock- period. Oh and he composed New Zealand's national anthem...put that in your pipe and smoke it...literally.
How was your gig last night with Motley Crue?
It was so hot that no one was absolutely, and I mean absolutely, nobody there in the audience! It was empty. We were told we had to do 30 minutes so we went on stage and did 30 minutes. I can't say it was an uplifting experience! [laughs]. The other 4 concerts were really great but I won't be doing that again. It was a good lesson, I do think we stole quite a few of the audience from Motley Crue, in Cardiff, Glasgow Manchester and...and....
Birmingham NEC, that's right. We rocked the house. We came off really well. That's the last time I ever play second fiddle. Those big soulless venues have no decent bars. I'd rather book 3 or 4 nights in a smaller venue and have a great atmosphere, good sounds instead of those horrible barns these so-called arena bands work in. It's certainly not my intention for us to go down that angle.
Killing Joke has been around for 27 years
...over half my life! I was a teenager when I started [laughs]
(and you've been rocking for longer). How have you managed to stay so aggressive and passionate about it?
.I don't think we'd bother continuing if we didn't have anything to contribute to innovation. Other bands have re-formed over the last year and a bit. Obviously they're doing it because their accountants are telling them it's a good idea or something. That's not the case with Killing Joke, we have been putting gout records consistently since 1979, and I mean consistently. We do it because we really love the music and what Killing Joke means and it's incredible the knock-on effect Killing Joke have had obviously Nirvana and the American scene. Right across the board to the most unusual people. I'm proud we've had this creative influence. When you hear KJ on the radio or a band that sounds like KJ, we're always used as a reference point. It's such a short life, I mean, for god's sake. I have billionaire friends who have flown me and the band from Auckland to Frankfurt on private 747's- they're not happy people. I've still got all my boys living round the corner from each other. We have what we need to continue and we're not greedy beyond that, you know. I feel very proud of what we have accomplished.