In 1990, we played with killing joke a few times in the states: at the old 9:30, in pittsburgh, and i think one other place. This was the 'Extremities' tour - which saw the band re-form with Martin Atkins on drums (after the dismal 'at the gates' album). We (monica and i - while in madhouse) had played with them in the 80s. but my history with the band goes back pretty far- as an old friend of mine used to live with Youth in the late 70s, when the band first started. We hung out at Youth's house in Brixton on a vacation in the early 80s. Whenever KJ toured the states we went to see them play...and we got to be friends.
Monica and I put together Strange Boutique in the late 80s, and when KJ booked that Extremties tour we reached out to see if they had any open slots for us. They offered us a few, and after the last show they mentioned that they had a few uk shows coming up and it would be great if we could join them for two of the shows (london and manchester). we didn't have a lot of time to prepare, so scrambled to get things together. we needed someone to help tm the shows (organize travel, rent a drum kit, backline and such) so we asked our friend phil ames - who we'd met when supporting the fall. he was the only person we really knew over there who could do the job, and it was phil who later went on to tour manage swervedriver - landing me that gig. anyway, we grabbed our guitars and flew over - only to have the guitars confiscated when we got to Heathrow. (Phil quickly sorted that out as well.) We were in the UK for about a week - and we did both shows. it was loads of fun. they were really great guys - but the band imploded about six months later - i think jaz had a breakdown and went off to live on an island near australia in the south pacific.
there were a lot of fun stories/memories from those shows - but the one i remember best is that when we first showed up for the show in pittsburgh (this was the first of the shows and the first time i'd met martin) - i started playing the drum beat to 'four enclosed walls' during soundcheck (which he'd written while in public image). he got very cross, came up to me right in the middle of soundcheck and accused me of nicking his beats! i reassured him that i was doing it in loving tribute - and we laughed it off. but his initial reaction?? egad. anyway - i'm still friends with martin after all this time.
it was also at that shitsburgh show that i met Norm Vienstra . he was a kj fan and booked the show. he wound up taking over as manager of the 9:30 club shortly after this time.
oh yeah - another anecdote - Geordie, in addition to playing a beautiful guitar - was very clothes conscious. He work armani suits on stage (no jeans and tees for him). Someone broke into the dressing room and stole his suits (and my walkman!). he was so pissed off - and the band in such a foul mood - that they delayed playing the show to well after midnight as they waged a war of attrition with Norm to get paid before actually playing.