Are You Receiving? Killing Joke As Post Punk Pioneers

Jaz Coleman portrait courtesy of Killing Joke
It’s undeniable that Simon Reynolds’ Rip It Up And Start Again: Postpunk 1978 – 1984 (Faber, 2005) is an essential text for anyone interested in the revolutionary potential of DIY music recorded in the pre-digital age. This weighty but gripping tome starts with the implosion of the Sex Pistols during their ill-fated American tour of 1978 and concludes with the explosion of such ‘new pop’ acts as Frankie Goes To Hollywood and Art Of Noise seven years later. These two stylistically diverse bookends only hint at the cornucopia of ragged and revolutionary sonic thrills to be had on the pages in between. The oppressive gloom of Joy Division; the herky jerky deconstructed jazz fusion of The Contortions; the militant Marxist funk of Gang Of Four; the avant feminist punk of The Slits; the revolutionary machine noise of Throbbing Gristle; the rumbling, scabrous dub of PiL; the heady, post-modern pop of Talking Heads, and so on. …”
The Quietus