Notting Hill’s very own Post-Punk Metal icons Killing Joke are set to release ‘Corporate Elect‘ as a single. The track, from April’s ground-breaking album MMXII (or 2012 for the classically untrained), is a dark exploration into corporate greed in big business.
Like most people who logged into Killing Joke’s website prior to the release of MMXII and listened to ‘Rapture’, I practically chewed the doors off my local record shop to get hold of it, of course I was alone because I live in a dreary seaside town where everyone listens to council-house music, but that’s beside the point. I knew then, listening to that one track, that this album would be something special, a revival of the hay-day of Killing Joke. It was an uncomfortable car journey home for Mrs Machine Steve, who isn’t a fan of my music anyway, but the buzzing from the plastic dash as I cranked the volume to max probably made it more unbearable.
In that journey I listened to ‘Corporate Elect’ for the first time and, although definitely not my favourite on the album, it had single written all over it. It was made to be a single, much like Ann Widdecombe in that respect but for totally different reasons, it was an outspoken attack on big business and how it runs our lives and directly influences the politics of a nation.
The punching chorus says it all, “It’s an ADD Generation everyone accepts, the reintroduction of slavery by a corporate elect”, where “ADD” stands for Attention Deficit Disorder. A hard hitting blow for any would-be business mogul who happens to be listening to Killing Joke on their way to work, the intention of course to imply that the corporations are creating a world of apathetic non-thinkers who merrily chug along in their daily routines, spending money they don’t have, to buy things they don’t need.
The opening guitar riff to the song is classic Killing Joke, any fan would instantly recognise it, true Post-Punk grinding metal. I used to delight in playing Killing Joke tracks when I DJ’d in the local pub, the hardcore punks telling me it’s not real punk because they use synths and the metal heads telling me it’s not real metal because of the way Jaz Coleman sings. For me Colman’s vocals make the music, they complement the sound so well and Corporate Elect is no different, the dreary goth-metal whine during each verse smashed apart by the more gravelly, crunching, thrash metal chorus, a range that sets Kiling Joke apart from their peers.
Whatever label you assign to Killing Joke there is no denying the quality of their work, thought provoking lyrics mixed with a range of playing that is testament to the experience of founding members Jaz Coleman and Geordie Walker. Corporate Elect has all those things in an abundance and in a way perhaps thats partly the message the song is giving us. Who cares if it’s McPunk, Kentucky Fried Pop-Punk, Post Hardcore Goth Screamo, or any other label the corporation wants you to apply to it, perhaps there should only be two labels, ‘I lIke it” and ‘I don’t like it’. In this case I really really like it, buy it now, take it in your car down to the local block of council flats and give the fast-food eating, fizzy drink swilling great unwashed an education in global politics.
Get your grubby mitts on the single Corporate Elect by Killing Joke on 3rd December 2012