This is a Random Album Generator.
One album a day.
From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Killing Joke

Killing Joke

1980

Buy At Rough Trade
Killing Joke
Album Summary

Killing Joke is the debut studio album by English post-punk band Killing Joke, released on 5 October 1980 by E.G. via Polydor Records. It debuted at number 41 on the UK Albums Chart on 26 October 1980 and later peaked at number 39. The album was self-produced by the band on purpose. They only wanted an engineer "who can put their technical knowledge into what we want, the way we want it. He's got to take us as we are". They recorded it live in the studio as "basic" as possible with "no overdubs to speak of"; Ferguson explained, "The mixing is where the difference is". Engineer Phil Harding reckons the recording of the album might have only taken two weeks. The album's lyrics were written by Coleman and Ferguson expressing their opinions on issues such as politics, death, hypocrisy, human nature, pollution and exile. The artwork was based on a photograph by Don McCullin of young rioters trying to escape from clouds of CS gas released by the British Army in Derry, Northern Ireland, on 8 July 1971 during the Troubles. The original picture was taken a few months before the day now known as Bloody Sunday that took place in the same town in early 1972.

Wikipedia

Rating

2.98

Votes

10895
Genres
Rock
Post Punk

Reviews

Like a review? Give it a thumb up to help us display relevant reviews!
Sort by: Top Date
View Author
Fri Apr 23 2021
4

I liked this way more than I thought I would. It's a weird mash of genres: proto-industrial, post-punk, metal... But the mix works. It was also nice to have some actual rock and roll for once. It falls shy of full marks only because a few of the tracks are a bit (or more than a bit) monotonous/obnoxious.

👍
View Author
Sun Jul 11 2021
2

laughably bad at points, one decent song, not sure why it's on the list

👍
View Author
Thu Dec 16 2021
4

Not to be confused with 2003 album "The Killing Joke," also by The Killing Joke. (Although Killing Joke fan Dave Grohl played drums on that album, interestingly enough.) Also not to be confused with the 1988 graphic novel "Batman: the Killing Joke," by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland, widely regarded as one of the best Joker stories ever told. Also not to be confused with American band The Killing Joke, which seems to have released three singles in 2021. Rather, this The Killing Joke are led by frontman Professor Severus Snape. Ok, not really. Jaz Coleman looked nothing like Snape when this album came out. But he really bears a striking resemblance now. If he actually believed himself to be a wizard, that wouldn't even be so surprising. Consider this from the Seattle Weekly: "The long-standing “mystic,” who lives on a small New Zealand island these days (perhaps to avoid having to wear a tinfoil hat every day), believes, among other things, that China has built microwave towers to control the population with microchips, which are secretly implanted via vaccines, and this will eventually happen elsewhere around the world; that people are being mind-controlled by chemtrails in the sky and fluoride in the water; that nutrients are being purposefully removed from foods to kill us and keep the world population down; that swine flu is a bioweapon; and that due to changes in the earth’s magnetic field, time is actually speeding up (actually, this one’s sort of believable—is it already the holidays again?!)." But as for the actual music? The opener "Requiem" was kind of cool, but "Wardance" almost lost me. By the time it got to "The Wait," I was back on board, and I really enjoyed "Complications."

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 22 2021
5

I had never heard of these guys, but I was glad to have listened to this. Ahead of their time sound-wise, hard to believe this was 1980. A good mixture of punk and more melodic. Elements of the Cure or NIN in there.

👍
View Author
Wed May 05 2021
5

Brutal but surprisingly groovy. Progenitor of so much I love.

👍
View Author
Wed Jun 29 2022
5

Loved it. Some really great rifts and just beats. Don't know how this escaped me. this what this list is for.

👍
View Author
Wed May 01 2024
5

oooooh Killing Joke!! TBH The only song I know from them is Millenium. Which is a bad ass song!! super diggin this album, it's like early punk and also a little bit of like joy division tones maybe? I love this. 5 stars

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 22 2021
4

The opener, "Requiem" was an attention grabber. With the exception of a few noisy interludes in the middle this was an excellent album. It felt about 10 years ahead of its time as its influence on industrial metal and alternative rock are immediately clear. Will definitely revisit this one.

👍
View Author
Mon Feb 12 2024
4

Post-punk debut that separated the contenders from the pretenders.

👍
View Author
Mon May 17 2021
3

Bloodsport and S.O.36 were very repetitive melodically. Liked some of the bass lines. Vocals reminded me The Clash a little bit.

👍
View Author
Wed May 01 2024
3

Nice. Best tracks are Bloodsport and Change 3/5

👍
View Author
Fri Oct 15 2021
2

Je n'ai pas tellement envie de rédiger de critique de cet album de punk alors je vous propose de lire celle que j'ai écrite pour l'album Pink Flag (et non le groupe Pink Flag comme j'ai pu le penser) des Wire qui s'applique grosso merdo à celui-ci.

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 18 2021
5

Great album with no skips. Love the industrial sound

👍
View Author
Fri Jul 01 2022
5

Heavy, industrial, feel like there are also some dub influences here. Surprised I'd never heard of this before; feel like a band like Big Black or Failure would have worn copies of this record. Favorite tracks: "Wardance", "The Wait", "S.O.36"

👍
View Author
Fri Aug 12 2022
5

So glad this is on the list. I enjoyed it so much I listened to it twice along with two other albums. I was already a fan of their most popular songs, Eighties & Love Like Blood, but this album was rougher with a mix of rock, punk & industrial. At times, they reminded me of Ministry. I'll be listening to Killing Joke regularly (which is something I've been meaning to do anyway). They've got a new lifelong fan.

👍
View Author
Wed Sep 21 2022
5

The repetitive character of the guitar riffs, the keystrokes and the rousing drumwork have an hypnotic effect on the music, and musically and lyrically it provides a somewhat nihilistic and grey view of the world. It is the link between the punk and the post-punk. Killing Joke succeeds in creating a the atmosphere and sound that is characteristic of the British urban environments in the early 1980s. The album cover also contributes to that feeling. Absolute masterpiece

👍
View Author
Mon Jan 30 2023
5

Finally, a band I've never heard of before.. let's go! Half way through the album. This is EXACTLY the type of album that makes this project worth it. Top notch discovery incoming! After two full listens. This is easily the best discovery I have made so far on the generator. In other people's reviews, everyone has a different opinion on who this band sounds like, or who they've clearly influenced. Obviously, the extent of their influence stretches pretty wide. But beyond that, this is a very solid, exciting assortment of songs. The album is well balanced, well paced, there are no weak tracks, there are no weak links within the band, just great music all around. 5/5 defiant fists in the air ✊✊✊✊✊

👍
View Author
Sun Feb 18 2024
5

Excellent album. The members of this band had only gotten together in June of 1979 and by 1980 this album would revolutionize the notion of punk and industrial music. On this album you get the proto tracks of industrial and electronic rock that would illuminate the path for groups I love like Skinny Puppy, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, and many others... My favorite tracks are "Requiem", "Wardance", "The Wait", and "The Primitive".

👍
View Author
Sat Feb 24 2024
5

This is great. Way ahead musically and conceptually against other similar bands, and for raw aggression, mood, anger, despair, intensity, and darkness no one comes close from this era, except for Joy Division and maybe Bauhaus. The use of synths and echo effects really elevates this in my eyes. It’s almost a No Wave record, and it really grooves for a post-punk/industrial/metal album.

👍
View Author
Fri Mar 08 2024
5

The best Killing Joke album with best opening song ever. Superclassic.

👍
View Author
Fri Mar 05 2021
4

Its different and you'll either like it or not. Funk/Industrial/Prog Rock is an interesting combo. Band is obviously talented, discovered their own sound and inspired a lot of big name bands today

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 02 2022
4

Groovy, bleak, industrial punk.

👍
View Author
Thu Nov 30 2023
4

Knew “The Wait” from my days as a Metallica obsessed teenager, but was largely unfamiliar with Killing Joke aside from that. An enjoyable and influential electronic/punk hybrid.

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 08 2024
2

not horrible, but very repetitive. not a lot that sticks out as really good or memorable. lyrics can be interesting but still repetitive. had no desire to listen to the re-issue bonus tracks

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 15 2024
2

Very techno and seemingly punk. Rough, gritty, grinding and monotonous at times.

👍
View Author
Tue Apr 20 2021
5

It's incredible. Astonishing. and thoroughly underheralded. This is going to get listened to again in this house.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 22 2021
5

I enjoyed this album a lot. It's hard to believe this was produced in 1980 - the sound is way ahead of it's time. I also didn't realize how many covers of their songs I'd heard without knowing the true origins. It reminds me of NiN or Tool, but with a little more edge to it and less dystopian metal clanging.

👍
View Author
Fri Mar 19 2021
5

As for this album, it's a nimble, uncompromising distillation of everything good about 70s punk, reimagined as an artistic statement from another world. It's catchy but haunting. It's simplistic but ambitious. It's hardcore punk mixed with synthpop, yet it predates both. It's a post-punk paradox and a strong example of PERFECTION.

👍
View Author
Fri Jul 23 2021
5

Classic. Requiem and Bloodsport are probably favorites.

👍
View Author
Fri Nov 12 2021
5

Killing Joke is the debut studio album by English post-punk band Killing Joke, released on 5 October 1980 by E.G. via Polydor Records. The band's musical style emerged from the post-punk scene, but stood out due to their heavier approach, and has been cited as a key influence on industrial rock. I liked the raw sound of the mix, especially the sound of the snare drum. My favourite tracks: Wardance, Tomorrow's World, Bloodsport, S.O.36, Change. (18/02/2023).

👍
View Author
Thu Dec 02 2021
5

I really liked this. I had high expectations and this album exceeded them. I will definitely be listening to this again.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 26 2022
5

asså ja. ja ja ja. fy fan. jag älskar sån här skit. slow gothic punkigt. kanske inte är världens bästa skiva men för mig personligen så mmmmmm

👍
View Author
Mon May 02 2022
5

Wow! What a perfect example of a transition from punk to post-punk. It's got the raw energy of early 70s punk with the refinement yet experimental nature of punk's 80 predecessors. Amazing stuff.

👍
View Author
Thu Jul 14 2022
5

This album is a seminal post punk record that has been cited by many musicians as influential. This album goes beyond its post punk pedigree and anticipates grunge and alternative rock while incorporating electronic sounds. The fact that Killing Joke was released in 1980 is astonishing given how it sounds like it was released within in the last 30 years. All in all this Album was incredibly ahead of its time.

👍
View Author
Fri Jul 15 2022
5

really good post-punk I enjoyed the shit out of it, 9/10

👍
View Author
Fri Sep 09 2022
5

Outstanding example of early electro-punk fusion.

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 02 2022
5

I’m not sure if I’ve heard Killing Joke before. I might be thinking of the graphic novel, although I’ve never read that either. It seems to be 80s rock from what I can gather from a cursory glance on Apple Music, so this could potentially be very suited to my taste. Songs I already knew: none Favourites: Requiem, Bloodsport What a fantastic sound! When the synth intro of Requiem started up, I wasn’t sure which way it would go as it wouldn’t sound out of place in house music, but this is punk rock through and through. I can definitely say that I’ve never heard punk rock that utilises synths quite like this. It never veers into what would be considered pop-punk these days, which is hard to wrap my head around with that synth. I thoroughly enjoyed this album, and the instrumental Bloodsport was outstanding. I’ll certainly be giving this a lot of play time.

👍
View Author
Thu Jan 12 2023
5

Its a banger from start to finish. Ticks a lot of boxes

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 03 2023
5

A great record by a band I only listened to the singles. I learned that this was a grave mistake.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 05 2023
5

Really wild album!!! A lot of very cool songs on this album! First time listening to this and I really enjoyed it! Super punk album which I really dig. Super stripped down sounds and very raw sounding instruments, synth in there as well sounds so ahead of its time! Also even some songs I can feel the punk style that Turnstile takes from which I really enjoy! Very very solid album!

👍
View Author
Thu Jun 08 2023
5

Well, this album is significantly better than the 2003 "The Killing Joke", which I may or may not have listened to first. I really enjoy this blend of punk and hard rock, and the band doing the mixing themselves with such a clear idea of the sound they wanted is damn impressive. This is certainly going to be in the rotation going forward, and it's probably even going to make it onto my gym playlist. Favorite track: Complications

👍
View Author
Sun Jun 11 2023
5

4.5 post punk at its finest, can get a tiny bit repetitive in the middle but it's just so up my street that i didn't even mind. also was convinced that had to be robert smith singing at certain points. fave songs: requiem, so36, bloodsport, primitive, change

👍
View Author
Wed Jun 21 2023
5

Great to hear this again. The mix of punk, post-punk, dub and disco sounded pretty futuristic at the time. Although not my favourite of theirs (Revelations is a much more consistent album), this did set the blueprint for what followed, and for LOADS of other bands. So many great tunes here: Wardance, Change, Requiem. Top drawer stuff,

👍
View Author
Mon Jul 03 2023
5

massive, unique, as fresh as the day it was born

👍
View Author
Sat Aug 19 2023
5

An epic album ahead of its time

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 05 2023
5

slow down the punk guitars, tribal drums, add some reggae bass and a general sense of doom. One of the founding texts of goth. The first Killing Joke album is absolutely essential and in Requiem, Wardance and Change (the latter on the expanded reissue) a phenomenal piece. They'd sell way more records in the mid-eighties, but this and its successor are the Killing Jokes.

👍
View Author
Fri Sep 15 2023
5

Gran origen al punk rock argentino

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 21 2023
5

I put this music on today and my cat work up from her nap to paw at the screen until I turned it off. I don’t think she’s a fan. On the other hand, I was quite surprised by how much I enjoyed listening to this. This ain’t the first time an album has surprised me on this project. I started off a 4 but I’m listening to it for the third time and I really am enjoying it. Yet another unexpected 5.

👍
View Author
Sun Oct 08 2023
5

Excellent album that I’d not heard before. Got me listening to more of their work. Don’t know how I missed them.

👍
View Author
Wed Oct 18 2023
5

This is a great album. Gritty vocals and some great performances. "Asteroid" was a particular favorite of mine.

👍
View Author
Tue Oct 24 2023
5

It might just be because I listened to this at work while drinking a bang energy, but I really really liked this album. At first, I thought it was going to be a 2 at most but each song grew on me more and more until I was listening to all the bonus tracks and restarting the album from the beginning. I think this album shows that I would really like all the other punk/post punk albums I've gotten if the production had anything interesting going on at all aside from shitty guitars because this had the usual shitty vocals but each track had interesting stuff going on production-wise. Requiem almost has a rave electronica type beat, complications has fun bass guitar work, tomorrow's world has a cool keyboard chord, and the rest is what you imagine is playing when you walk into a seedy biker bar where there's a perpetual fight happening over a disgusting pool table.

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 30 2023
5

Love this album, favourite track Wardance,

👍
View Author
Mon Nov 06 2023
5

If I could play guitar well and be in a band this is what I'd play.

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 08 2023
5

Loved the instrumentals, didn’t really care for the vocals. Usually not my genre, I was surprised!

👍
View Author
Wed Dec 13 2023
5

Never heard of it, liked it a lot.

👍
View Author
Mon Feb 19 2024
5

A really solid album, way ahead of its time. Some songs sound a little dated, but the overall production is still great. I don't have many complaints about this one. 4.5

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 22 2024
5

So that’s what post punk is!

👍
View Author
Sun Mar 10 2024
5

Tight set of songs. No weak tracks. First 5 given Favorite tracks: Requiem, Complications, Change

👍
View Author
Mon Mar 18 2024
5

I've listened to this a bit over the years. Metallica brought me to The Wait, stayed for the rest of the bangers. A classic.

👍
View Author
Fri Mar 29 2024
5

Crisp post punk, love the bass

👍
View Author
Fri Apr 12 2024
5

Opening track is great! I can’t believe I’ve never listened to this album before. I knew of the wait because of Metallica. I like the original better. This is a great record. I wish I had heard this sooner. I really like this record.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 17 2024
5

Great piece of music, very engaging at times challenging but also head nodding. 4.5

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 25 2021
4

Listened to it twice and never understood a single word (to be fair, some of it was in German). Some really sick grooves, though. Best track: S.O.36

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 12 2021
4

I’m way behind on my appreciation of this band, but I’ve always liked their name and wanted to do a deep dive. Maybe this is the push I need. Really liked it, especially the voice. Can clearly hear the influence on a ton of other bands I’ve listened to over the years. Good stuff.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 22 2021
4

Well that was suprising. I enjoyed that album alot. I winced when I saw 1980, never have been a huge fan. I think it helped I had heard covers of these songs previous maybe. Top 3 The Wait, Requiem, Change 4 of 5

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 20 2021
4

Muy buena energía, rock darks, grandes riffs y una batería siempre presente. Disfruté mucho de inicio a fin. Le doy 9/10.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 20 2021
4

8/10 disfrute mucho el disco

👍
View Author
Sun Feb 14 2021
4

Good hard rock. More interesting than I expected.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 20 2021
4

Postpunk, pre-goth?, marihuano, depre y casi pesado en partes iguales. Varias canciones interesantes con percusiones energéticas que contrastan con las cuerdas mansas, repetitivas y medio hipnóticas. Supongo que el mood vampírico habría sido satisfactorio para los aires góticos de los ochenta como Sisters of Mercy, no lo sé. Tomorrow's World le gustó a mi darketo retro interno y aprueba porque me recordó a Theatre des Vampires. The Wait está movidona para bailar un headbanging ligero dando saltitos, vestido de negro, en un bar lleno de gente que dice que se quiere morir. S.O.3.6 = Atisbos de depressive doom metal??? calif: 4 por algunas cancionsillas que están medio flojas, pero en general muy satisfecho.

👍
View Author
Wed Feb 10 2021
4

This was ok, in the right mood I could really like it. In the wrong mood it sounds very sixth form. Will give it 4 but it should be 3.5

👍
View Author
Wed Mar 17 2021
4

Killing Joke’s _Killing Joke_ killed it! I only know of their music from a little later in their career, specifically the song _Eighties_. I quite enjoyed this album, it had some fun experimenting going on.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 29 2021
4

kind of weird but not in a bad way, interesting sounds

👍
View Author
Tue Jun 15 2021
4

Kende niet veel van Killing Joke eigenlijk, heel tof!

👍
View Author
Tue Jun 08 2021
4

3 и 7 тречки вообще хорошие, эх вот бы их семплами кендрику!

👍
View Author
Tue Jun 08 2021
4

Killing Joke в порядке, мне нравятся как минимум хитовые темы (особенно знаменитый кавер на Нирвану, балдеж же) По альбому — немного смешанные чувства. Вообще ну, я его понял. И для себя в целом сделал вывод, что нет смысла гнать на затянутость композиций, ибо сделаны они таковыми намерено. Ну и свой поинт в этом есть, особенно если учитывать, что в жанрах указан индастриал — примерно так там всё и происходит. Долгие зацикленные куски. Здесь ещё и время от времени годным вокалом разбавлены. Также в голову пришло сравнение с Телевижн опять же, но быстрее поспешил отбросить, ибо по сравнению с Марки Муном этот альбом просто плотнейше сосёт. Но и цель другая была, вероятно. В целом и общем мне понравилось, например, более, чем Джой Дивижн. Несмотря на тэг «пост-панк» в этом музле нет вот того раздражающего примитива и пересахаренности самых видных представителей жанра. Да и в целом под этот тэг попадали самые разные группы, в том числе Мелвинс, Дево, Депеш Мод, Б-52, Хускер Ду и прочие, имеющие мизерное влияние на декаданс нынешней пост-панк сцены. Посему огульно клеймить не стоит. Но всё же неприятие немного э. Вторая песня своим отпроцешенным вокалом раздражает. Bloodsport всё-таки слишком скучная для инструментала. И вообще всё немного однообразное. Но под настроение, думаю, можно врубить и почиллить (ага да). Ну 7/10 всё же есть, наверное, особенно там за риффаки в The Wait и Complications, за припев S.O.36. Довольно годное музло по итогу.

👍
View Author
Wed May 12 2021
4

Right mood at the right time. The album hits pretty hard to listen to at work, but it happened to work for me on this day. This album is fantastic. Music is so much about current mood. DIG IT!

👍
View Author
Wed Jun 23 2021
4

Lotta cool things happening here. I can hear their influence in a lot of places.

👍
View Author
Fri May 14 2021
4

Ooooooo I like the intro for the first song. Second song has some alien vocals lol. Ya know what, it's a good beat though. This album kinda sounds like the first or second one after a garage band period. In this case, it's a good thing. I'm digging it. Yeah, I liked this a lot. I'm gonna give it a 4 only because I think it could've been mixed just a little bit better.

👍
View Author
Wed May 19 2021
4

Better than I expected. Big driving bass and drums, heavy riffs, some pommy bastard over the top. The Wait was a good song. Heavy, energetic, competent and keeps it up for the whole listen.

👍
View Author
Wed May 26 2021
4

I have heard of this band but never heard anything from this band, what a great surprise. Sounds ahead of its time

👍
View Author
Tue Jul 20 2021
4

Interesting. Enjoyed this. Sits well alongside Gang of Four's 'Entertainment'.

👍
View Author
Fri Sep 10 2021
4

I really liked this one. It’s a solid post punk/proto-industrial album that utilizes funk, electronic musical elements and noise to interesting effect. What they’re doing is foundational to what industrial artists will be doing 8-10 years down the line, but it’s also fairly accessible for the casual listener. The arrangements are simple and surprisingly melodic on occasion. Jaz Coleman’s vocals are strong, and the lyrics are spare, visceral and effective. The band has great chemistry and takes a less is more approach overall, with bass and drums taking a prominent place in their sound. Paul Ferguson’s hard driving but simple drums show a necessary restraint many drummers don't have. Youth’s bass guitar work is killer. This is all augmented by Geordie Walker’s fierce, grinding guitars and an economic use of synthesizers. Fave Songs: The Wait, Bloodsport, Complications, Requiem

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 11 2021
4

It sounds really like a contemporary album.

👍
View Author
Wed Oct 13 2021
4

Pretty good album. Some really catchy songs and very ahead of its time.

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 18 2021
4

I had never heard of these guys, but I was glad to have listened to this. A very pleasant surprise

👍
View Author
Wed Oct 20 2021
4

never really listened to them before but absolutely loved the dark inventiveness of this album, some great sounds enjoyed it very much

👍
View Author
Fri Oct 22 2021
4

Pretty cool noise and way ahead of its time.

👍
View Author
Thu Nov 18 2021
4

Hi: Complication, Change Lo: Tomorrow's World A little bit Jane's Addiction and Fugazi, a little bit Pop Will Eat Itself and Pigface. KJ features driving machinelike rhythms and crunchy guitars, and just enough synth to set it even farther apart. This album may sound a little dated by today's standards, but it still has good bones, and we wouldn't have much of an industrial scene in the 90's if it weren't for Killing Joke.

👍
Load more reviews