The Beauty and sheer Genius of a band like Killing Joke is their ability to incorporate anything and everything into their sound, and make it still sound like them, ya know? They weathered every fad and fashion that came at them and turned it all upside down and inside out, making it into a sound of their own, all in the process of Assimilation, Annihilation, and Reinvention. This collection of singles (no B-Sides though, which is odd), live stuff, and super duper remixes and rarities from Killing Joke is the best documentation of the bands musical evolution ever, much better than Laugh? I Nearly Bought One!, which came out over 20 years ago and does not include any of their latter day stuff. This 3 CD collection starts off with their 70's post-Punk Wire and Gang Of Four sounding stuff, then goes into their slick 80's Goth and New Wave aural dance floor assaults, then explodes into the 90's where the band added a touch of Metal to their arsenal and got a bit more grating with their overall sound, and then it takes you all the way into the present day, where Killing Joke continues to make music that is pretty much undefinable and years ahead of what anyone else is doing nowadays. This list of bands who cite Killing Joke as a source of Inspiration is awe inspiring. Google that shit if you don't believe me. I think everyone in the world had a copy of the Eighties release (I know Kurt Cobain did!), and the fact that this band is still doing it today is nothing short of remarkable. There's waaaaayyy too many standout tracks on this collection to single out just a handful as outstanding or an essential listen - every song on here pretty much is. The one thing does stand out is the omission of the song The Wait, blown the fuck up by Metallica on their Garage Days EP. I thought that song was a single, but I guess I was wrong. Oh well. I guess we needed to hear those remixes, dub versions, and alternate takes of later day songs instead of a classic piece of the early Killing Joke musical history. ;-) Minor complaint aside, this is still one Hell of a collection from one of the most Heavy and Momentous bands to ever crawl out of the muck that is known as England and unleash their Anger, Fury, and Wrath upon an unsuspecting and completely unworthy Music scene. If you in any way fancy yourself as an Artist, a Punk, a Radical, a Musician, or whatever label you saddle yourself with, then you owe it to yourself to check out the latest release from Killing Joke. Prepare to have your mind blown and inspired, both at the same time. Available from Spinefarm Records.
Galaxy Express - Galaxy Express
I caught these guys one night @ the Bunkhouse and was blown away by them. 3 guys from South Korea (I think) playing an amazing amalgamation of Rock, Punk, Funk, Soul, Alternative, whatever, and doing it quite well. This latest release from them is a great representation of the band I saw play live. The songs are hooky, pop stuff, with driving beats and catchy riffs all around. Think B.R.M.C. meets The Hellacopters, with a little bit of Blondie thrown in for good measure, and you'll get a good idea of what this band sounds like. Some songs have English titles, like, How Does It Feel (a 7 minute Alterna-Rock ragga), and only the chorus is sung in English, the rest of the song is sung in Korean. Weird. Other songs on here are not sung in English, but it sure sounds like they are. It's definitely a bit of an unsettling listen, but the music's so damn good that it's easy to get into it and phonetically sing along to the songs, especially the back up vocals, which are pretty sick... heh heh. It is with some amusement that I tell you that best songs on here are Cha! Cha! Cha! Cha!, 너와 나, and 호롱불. What do those last 2 say? I dunno. Me no read Korean, and I'm too lazy to type it into Google Translate, because I really don't care. It could be saying Kill Whitey or Death To America for all I know, but with such catchy music behind it, I'd still like them - maybe even more so! Galaxy Express certainly wear their musical influences on their sleeves on this release. Some songs have riffs that sound very familiar to other, more well known, songs, easily recognizable but hey - who doesn't 'borrow' from others nowadays. It's a great big musical world out there, and Galaxy Express have released an impressive sounding record that can only further their musical legacy as a cool band to rock the fuck out to. Check these guys out live every chance you get. You will not be disappointed. Guaranteed. Excellent release. Available from the Love Rock Company, a Korean record label. Check out the bands Facebook page by clicking here.
Demon Lung - The Hundredth Name
I wish I had long hair again, because if I did, I would douse my head with lighter fluid and set myself alight and bang my head mercilessly until the flames either went out of their own accord or grew even bigger and hotter, all while listening to this epic chunk of musical Metal mayhem from Local doom bringers Demon Lung, who just lay waste to an pre-apocalyptic music world full of weak, contrived, talentless poseurs, who are devoid of Meaning, Passion, and Soul. Yes, this sophomore release from Demon Lung is THAT good, with the bands overall sound growing more monster like in status; Heavier, Scarier, and even more Imposing than ever before, like the unnamed spawn of Yog Sothoth in musical form. The guitar work on here is astounding, with the riffs sounding either enormous in stature, like the sound of a city crumbling into the sea, or sharp and deadly in their accentuation, like being stabbed with a razor sharp knife slow and steady in the guts. The riffs are huge, monumental in both their depth and sound. It's really what makes Demon Lung as heavy as they are. The vocals are Haunting, Mesmerizing, Depressing, Sinister, and perfectly suited to the music being played. Makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up and say "What the fuck is this all about then?" Shanda's voice is Dismal and Evil, in the nicest way possible. I have no idea what she is singing about, but it scares the ever loving crap out of me to hear her do so, that's for sure. This release, named The Hundredth Name, is a concept album of sorts, with all 8 songs on here telling the story of the Son of Satan trying to assemble the 3 parts of the Devil's Bible in order to speak the name of God in reverse, and thus, undo Creation, but you don't even need to know that fact to enjoy the music on here. It sounds amazing. The drum work on here is stellar; heavy and steady and never overplayed. Sounds like a big ass boulder slowly rolling downhill, and just as powerful. Good job Jeremy! Same with the bass. It's like the sound of a black hole. There's so much going on up front with the guitars and vocals that the drums and bass work sometimes get buried in the back of the mix, but then a song like Hex Mark or Eyes Of Zamiel come on, and you get to experience the full Demon Lung aural assault, and it's a brutal one, that's for sure. I could go on and on about what a fantastic piece of Music this is, but I think you get the picture by now. My words do no Justice in explaining to you the Majesty, Beauty and Art that is contained within this latest release from Demon Lung. It's simply stunning and just goes to show you that you don't need a Scene to be successful. Just play what you Love and eventually, Success will find you, and I'm thinking that with this release, Success is going to be kicking down their front door real, real soon, and I, for one, couldn't be happier for them. Kudos. Available June 4th from Candlelight Records.