He’s quite the conqueror, a Hemingway
Your path is different, a road of somber trade
Run to the bed, hunt for another sigh
Like the lamb led to the slaughter, but your lips are open wide
Kendal Killjoy has a rich, resonant voice wrapped in the finest silk velvet. It gorgeously saturates the “gothic symph pop” of his outfit, Killjoy and the Cutthroats. Although technically synth pop, the New Mexico band employs real symphonic instruments in their sound. “We tend to focus on darker themes and imagery with more ambient reverb, like you might hear in the early post-punk/goth bands,” says Killjoy.
The band’s wry humour is also evident in the lyrical poetry and video production, particularly in Golden Years For A Gutter Punk, a sentimental “glory days” anthem blaring as we bear witness to elderly punkers reminiscing about thrashing about in mosh pits and dives in their wild youth. The Lynchian “end credits” concept of the video for Running takes an interesting turn as the entire band performs in eerie Wicker Man headdresses and masks, with close-ups of mouths spitting out the lyrics.
Although their direct inspirations are akin to Echo and the Bunnymen, Dazzle-era Siouxsie and a touch of Dead Can Dance, Killjoy and the Cutthroats can also be considered close musical brethren to more baroque endeavours, such as The Divine Comedy, The The, and the Magnetic Fields. There’s also a twangy touch of Orville Peck to keep things spicy. Elegant, intelligent work from Killjoy and the Cutthroats. Looking forward to more.
Watch the video for “Running” below:
Watch “Golden Years for a Gutter Punk” below: