Killing Joke was formed in 1979. The band members have changed several time and the only original remaining members are Jaz Coleman (vocals, keyboards and arrangements) and Geordie Walker (guitar). The other current band mates are Martin "Youth" Glover, Paul Ferguson and Reza Udhin.
A highly influential industrial rock and post-punk band, Killing Joke incorporated many types of music styles throughout their career and have heavily influenced many highly successful rock bands that followed them, such as Nirvana, Korn, Foo Fighters, Soundgarden and Metallica.
In the early days, Killing Joke became memorable by coming on stage adorning Fascist related poses and matching posters which resulted in the band being banned from performing in Scotland. They proceeded to antagonise many music journalists with their controversial posters, record covers and odd behaviour on and off stage.
Members of Killing Joke become fully involved with the occult and believed that the end of the world was coming and moved away for a while. When the band returned to the music scene (with changed members), they bought out "Birds of a Feather / Sun Goes Down / Flock the B-Side" and Ha!, a six-track 10".
From 1983-1988, Killing Joke incorporated elements of dance into their music and their album Night Time (1985) did well and peaked at #16 in the UK. Brighter than a Thousand Suns (1986) followed and was similar in musical style to Night Time.
Outside the Gate (1988) proved to be a turning point in the band’s fortune and the album was heavily criticised by the music press. As well as this, a lengthy legal battle followed and Coleman suffered a nervous breakdown.
By 1989, Killing Joke came back to life with a revised line-up and the band toured Europe and North America in 1991.
During the ‘90s Killing Joke bought out the anthology ‘Laugh? I Nearly Bought One!’ (1992) and sued Nirvana for stealing a rift from one of their tunes. The band went on hiatus in 1996.
In 2002 after the band came together again, Killing Joke celebrated their 25th Anniversary and played at the O2 Shepherds Bush Empire and released a commemorative album and DVD.
In the late 2000s, Killing Joke finally got recognised in the Classic Rock Roll of Honour 2010 in the Innovator category – reflecting their ever-changing musical style.