Killing Joke wait to read their review from the Glasgow gig
Killing Joke wait to read their review from the Glasgow gig

first new picture of the classic Killing Joke line up
first new picture of the classic Killing Joke line up

Announce new album
‘MMXII’ (2012)
released April 2nd 2012

April 2nd sees Killing Joke release their new album, ‘MMXXII’ (2012), on Spinefarm Records / Universal.

2012 is the perfect year for Killing Joke to be releasing an album that is as dense and as dark as the surrounding swirls of madness in the world. At a time when the news is fast-forward and the planet seems to be descending into madness, who better than Killing Joke to reflect this?

When their original line-up of Jaz Coleman, Geordie, Youth and Big Paul reconvened in 2008 after working together intermittently, that strange voodoo once again filled the room. Individually, they have a power, but together they have something sulphurous and strong that few bands can match. Killing Joke are not an average band with an average agenda; they lock the door and let the ritual commence, and ‘2012’ is the result.

The album’s key is the end of times, an age of flux, a shift in consciousness”¦

Some bands exist beyond the circus.

With a fierce intelligence and a thirst for esoteric knowledge that matches a music that is visceral and almost spiritual in its primal spirit Killing Joke are like no other band.

The band came out of punk and then set out on one of the most remarkable and idiosyncratic journeys ever. Their new album, 2012, is a dense and dark work that manages to combine their trademark relentless guitars, pounding tribal funk rhythm section and dark and powerful message with moments of rare beauty. Coupled with this is a career spanning film, ”ËœThe Death And Ressurection Show” – part documentary and part celebration of this unique band that deals in the myths and legends that swirl around this most idiosyncratic of bands.
”Ëœ2012′ is an end of time album that somehow finds moments of optimism in the downward swirl of the planet. Finding hope in the apocalypse the album could be their masterpiece. It’s a work that captures many of the traits that marked them out from their inception in 1979 in Notting Hill, London when they seem to arrive fully formed with a sound that was totally original- the result of four very different amorphous, fiercely intelligent individuals combining into a whole.
Releasing a series of dark, apocalyptic records since then they combined disco and funk and a shamanic wisdom with the dark side of the punk fallout.

Their influence has been enormous with an unlikely roll call of musicians taking their cues from the band from Nirvana to most modern American metal to many DJs and dance music mavericks- few of them come close to the band’s innate power.

When their original line up of Jaz Coleman, Geordie, Youth and Big Paul reconvened 2008 after working together intermittingly that strange voodoo again filled the room. Individually they have a power but together they have something sulphurous and powerful that few bands can match.

The classic line up’s extra curricular activities that include conducting orchestras, producing multi million selling bands, recording Arabic musicians are about as far away as you can get from the band themselves.

When they reconvene something very different comes from the 4 unique personalities. Killing Joke are not an average band with an average agenda, they lock the door and let the ritual commence. Anything could happen.

Frontman Jaz Coleman is a fiercely intelligent and quite dangerous individual who stares you in the eye and cackles the death rattle cackle of a man whose wild and unfettered thinking is getting proven right as he marvels at his unique band’s chemistry.

”ËœKilling Joke is a dark and beautiful playground.
It has the complete honesty of being able to say literally anything you feel like. It’s an amoral place. There are no boundaries. We can see each other as we really are, nothing is really planned.’

2012 is the perfect year for Killing Joke to be releasing an album that is as dense and dark as the surrounding swirls of madness in the world.

In a time when the news is fast forward and the world seems to be descending into madness who better than Killing Joke to reflect this.
”Ëœ2012′ a dense and multi layered work, Killing Joke have never sounded so intense, the songs are great slabs of sound, a death disco with huge slabs of guitar that soundtrack these dangerous times.

Jaz Coleman is a remarkable individual, he lives on a small island in the Pacific, three hours flight from New Zealand, where they have banned mobile phone because ”Ëœthe signals affect the bees’, he conducts orchestras and has been chosen as Composer in Residence for the European Union where he will be commissioned to write music for special occasions. He also records Arabic music in Cairo. An intellectual on a dark and dangerous quest for the truth, Coleman deals in both the esoteric and the truth, he is about the power of nature and the responsibility of the human race. His conversation is peppered with history, religion, philosophy, madness and ancient and modern theories of the beyond.
Killing Joke, for him, is a far from his outside activities.

”ËœIt’s completely different thing to the classical entity. When I’m conducting my mind is on fire, I have to anticipate everything, conducting orchestras is a more cerebral process, it’s mathematical. With Killing Joke you’re trying to get into a state of frenzy. They are different mediums- they are both music but that’s where it ends. In terms of the two aspects of me- one part of me is and individual, a hermit- the other part a communist when I like to share music with people- Killing Joke is a collective and the classical is one man’s vision.’

The album’s key is the end of times, an age of flux, and a shift in consciousness. The end times.

”ËœI cant see the point contemplating extreme life extinction- it’s good for nothing. It’s nihilism in the absolute even considering it.’
This kind of thinking sets the tone to this powerful record with 2012 and the state of flux the key issue.
”ËœIt’s in many different calendars- the great unveiling, the sky and the earth coming together. It’s a significant date. In the autumn there is a major planetary alignment and on that day I’m doing this rock festival ”ËœA Party At The End of The Earth’ which is going to be in New Zealand. Everything is speeding up. It’s not just our minds shrinking. We are heading towards the Eschaton and no-one really knows what’s going to happen.’

The album reflects this dark vision but Jaz Coleman sees the great change in a more positive light- the dawning of the Age Of Aquarias.
”ËœAll the remote viewers I know, myself included, cannot penetrate beyond. This year is about getting our collective dreams in order, restoring the biosphere, the idea of well being as opposed to economic growth, the idea of partnership and co creation with fellow human beings, moving away from national boundaries and more towards what Schiller and Beethoven were saying in some of their work.’

The album’s themes are political, anti capitalist and forward looking
”ËœIf we can concentrate on what it can be, the dream of clean streams, of reforestation, of permaculture, of disengaging all the banks- identifying all the majority shareholders of the top 100 corporations and dismantling them. If we start dreaming of a fairer system and defining what an elite should be- an intellectual powerhouse and not international bankers.’

He laughs that wild laugh and stares.

”ËœThis is what I’m touching on with the songs, ”ËœFemacam’ is about the concentration camps they have been building in America, ”ËœCorporate Elect’ needs no explanation, ”ËœRapture’ is the way I perceive a Killing Joke concert ”“ it’s a spiritual experience for myself to get in that state of grace- music is the theme of mantra, I’m not into organised religion atall but I always liked what Fela Kuti did in Nigeria playing music like it was a temple, maybe we will evolve into a time where we will be performing for ritualistic and spiritual reasons alone and not for monetary reasons.

There’s a song called ”ËœAll Hallows Eve’ which is about my belief in ancestor worship, backed up by quantum theories that there is no death. You only ever remember the timeline that you are alive in- you can’t remember being dead because you never were.

”ËœColony Collapse’ is about what’s happening, what’s going on out there. ”ËœPoleshift’ is the first track on the album and about the potential polar shift with of earth’s magnetic field behaving erratically and also the polar shift that will be needed.’

The twelve tracks are an avalanche of sound that is empowering whilst jolting you awake. They are as fascinating as chatting with Coleman, as he talks of future humans living for ever but with no emotions and of the Age Of Aquarius and the cycles of time, the shift in the earth’s electro magnetic field, the end of extreme capitalism, the Arab Spring and how his trips to Cairo to record music there have added to his belief that when Cairo falls everywhere else follows.
Clearly operating at a different speed than anyone else, Coleman is lucky to have a band that cannot not only match this vision but are very much equal parts of it.

”ËœWe talk about this stuff for days on end,’ he explains, adding, ‘when we make an album we have no preconceptions of what we are going to sound like and if we did they would be smashed to pieces very quickly.’

Killing Joke are the only honest band left on the planet. If you want to know what 2012 really sounds like then they have captured it with this tsunami of pure sound.

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Award winning journalist and boss of Louder Than War. In a 30 year music writing career, John was the first to write about bands such as Stone Roses and Nirvana and has several best selling music books to his name. He constantly tours the world with Goldblade and the Membranes playing gigs or doing spoken word and speaking at music conferences.


  1. Jaz an intellectual? Have you lost your marbles? Or is sycophancy still a prerequisite in rock journalism to conducting interviews?

    Coleman is a gullible esoteria-obsessed lunatic with a worldview so silly that it evokes images of a 5 year-old impersonating a grown up.

    The new album is great, but don’t confuse musical genius for intellectual prowess – ever.

  2. I am disappointed that so much of what Jaz seems to have said in this interview has been paraphrased and cut short in favour of information anyone who already knows a little about the band already knows.

    Why not just transcribe the lot?

    Marbles would not be required!


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