Today I left my sketchbook at home. Thought I wouldn’t have time to draw anything. Turns out I was wrong, so here’s a belated blog post instead.
Last month I saw the influential band Killing Joke live on their 40th anniversary tour. It was at Le Poisson Rouge, located in the middle of Manhattan’s West Village area. Killing Joke is still as brilliant live as when I saw them way back at CBGB’s, on August 13th, 1989.
Opening for Killing Joke was The Pink Slips. A Pop-Punk band hailing from California. The female vocalist, Grace McKagan, is also the daughter of Guns n’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan. The band itself was decent live. Grace was full of energy, but it just wasn’t my thing. It had too much of that glam California vibe for my liking. The singer did have great hair though.
It wasn’t long before it was time for Killing Joke to hit the stage.
The set was songs across the board from the band’s forty years of musical chaos. Of course the ‘Gathering’ loved it. My mood was off-set however, by the distressing news of some reproduction rights in some U.S. states. Kind of prophetic, considering what Killing Joke spoke about through their lyrics over the years. Speaking of which, Jaz Coleman briefly compared events from when Killing Joke first played NYC in 1980, to the current state of world affairs in 2019.
Here’s some videos found on YouTube from that night:
Between the Jaz Coleman spoken word and the concert, I’ve rekindled my love of Killing Joke all over again. Following Le Poisson Rouge, the band played yet another gig across the river. Over at Brooklyn’s very own St. Vitus Bar. The Brooklyn venue was much smaller, making it more intimate.
Now I’ve kicking myself. Since I live closer to St. Vitus than to Le Poisson Rouge, perhaps I should’ve tried harder to get tickets.
It should be noted that the guy who was sloshed the night before at Berlin NYC had his own act together the next evening. Maybe Jaz’s chat with him during intermission during the spoken word gig had an effect. Now he was being the responsible one, taking care of the woman I had sat next during the spoken word gig. Will get to that in a minute.
After the Killing Joke show was over, I was recognized by someone from April’s Ministry/Wax Trax event. It was the older woman who befriended the younger lady with the pink hair. Small world, isn’t it? We had a friendly conversation, comparing bands we liked. As we discussed which concert we were most likely to attend in the upcoming summer, I felt a tap on my shoulder. It was the blond friend I had seated next to during Jaz’s spoken word. Now the roles were reversed. She was extremely tipsy. As she was trying to talk to me, her male friend, the one who kept on interrupting Jaz Coleman during the spoken word night was duty-bound. He pardoned himself, as he seemed to be concerned about our mutual friend. The guy took her back home for her safely. As for myself, I tried to haul myself over to East 14th Street. Otto’s Shrunken Head was hosting an after concert party for Killing Joke. Killing Joke member Youth was the special guest DJ. I felt my body become more sluggish. (Youth has become a successful record producer, and has worked with Paul McCarthy) Taking a deep breath, I knew it was time to haul myself back to Queens. Yet as soon as I was waiting for the subway to arrive, a humongous rat almost crawled just inches near my feet. With that I knew I should’ve just taken a breather, and went to Otto’s. I’ve been consoling myself by listening to Killing Joke’s back catalog, and checking out Jaz’s classical music works.
(Also check out this link here.)