Killing Joke played their first US show in 20 years at the House Of Blues in Los Angeles last night (October 9) for a star-studded crowd that included Morrissey and members of Guns N Roses, Sex Pistols and The Cult.
The highly influential British post-punks performed a nearly two-hour set that spanned their career, focusing primarily on their 1980 self-titled debut and 1981's 'What's THIS For..!'.
Kicking off with their debut album opener 'Requiem', singer Jaz Coleman quipped, "It's nice to be here in the land of freedom."
Wearing a black jumpsuit, white face paint and heavy black eyeliner, Coleman played the part of a darkly animated ringmaster, gesturing and posturing and staring intently at the audience.
A serious moment came when he dedicated 'Love Like Blood' to Paul Raven, the band's former bassist who passed away last October. "I'd like to take the opportunity to remember Paul Raven," he said, and the band launched into the track that created a mass sing-along.
The audience was made up of young and old die-hard fans who created a giant mosh pit as well as a handful of curious onlookers. Screams rose from the crowd at the opening strains of their US hit 'Eighties'. "My mother found a Christmas card dated 1987 from Kurt Cobain so this song is appropriate," Coleman said when introducing the track.
The band ended their set at the stroke of midnight, and were called back for an encore, which included new song 'Strange People From The Sky' and classic crowd-pleaser 'Wardance'.
Killing Joke are set to play two more US dates at New York's Fillmore East tomorrow and Sunday (October 11, 12).