Killing Joke Hosannas from the Basement to Hell

Having surpassed their 25th anniversary mark, the Killing Joke franchise sustains some consistency as mainstays Jaz Coleman and Geordie Walker, along with on-again/off-again member Paul Raven, return in an attempt to further reinvent their sound. Mixed in a basement studio in Prague by Mark Lusardi (the man responsible for mixing the group’s debut), their music still embodies their echoing trademark sound. However, the aggressive vocals kicking off the album are an instant reminder that KJ have come a long way from their arty 1980s experimentations. An obvious metal influence shines through here, a fact that works well in certain tracks ("Invocation” and "Walking with Gods”), yet ultimately taints the album with drawn out, repetitive riffs and agonising vocals ("The Lightbringer”). Making matters worse, the nine tracks reach an exhausting runtime that surpasses the 60-minute mark. Apparently, Killing Joke forgot that while progression is good, in the end it is their fans who have to put up with their self-indulgences. (Cooking Vinyl)