Killing Joke – Pylon – Review

killingjoke200Killing Joke

Pylon (Spinefarm)
By Mike Delano

It’s a tricky thing if you’re a band that’s been around for as long as Killing Joke. Is it a blessing because you’re that much older and wiser than everyone else, and have decades of experience and practice to draw from? Or are you simply decades removed from that initial spark of greatness, now out-of-touch and chasing old glories? For these 35-year veterans, I’d definitely go with the former. There’s no way a new band could release anything as confident and straight-up cool as Pylon without accumulating a few battle scars from past lives. This is a superlative work of industrial music from start to finish – 10 impeccably crafted songs that drag you slack-jawed through the gamut of human experience: Hope, despair, awe, anxiety, and beyond. The soaring “Euphoria” butts up against the gritty, jagged “New Cold War,” and the shimmering “Big Buzz” is back to back with the hammering “Delete,” but everything fits together perfectly. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that this record was released within weeks of Public Image Limited’s similarly excellent What The World Needs Now… Like superheroes descending from the sky, every once and awhile these masters need to issue a reminder of their superiority and save us from drowning in a tidal wave of mediocrity.