My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult (often shortened to Thrill Kill Kult or TKK) is an American industrial rock band formed in 1987 originally based in Chicago, Illinois, United States. Along with Wax Trax labelmates Ministry, KMFDM, and Front 242, Thrill Kill Kult helped develop the industrial music genre, but they themselves continued to evolve, creating a sound that is not easily identified or categorized. Their music can be described as electronic club music with heavy beats, reminiscent of...
My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult (often shortened to Thrill Kill Kult or TKK) is an American industrial rock band formed in 1987 originally based in Chicago, Illinois, United States. Along with Wax Trax labelmates Ministry, KMFDM, and Front 242, Thrill Kill Kult helped develop the industrial music genre, but they themselves continued to evolve, creating a sound that is not easily identified or categorized.
Their music can be described as electronic club music with heavy beats, reminiscent of both disco and funk, yet amplified to a sometimes abrasive level. Thrill Kill Kult reflected a shift where dance records could be ominous and aggressive, and they laced their music with riffs and references that would seem more at home in a heavy metal group. One of their most distinctive characteristics is their use of spoken-word samples lifted from B-movies and other sources.
Frankie Nardiello and Marston Daley met in the spring of 1987 while touring together with the band Ministry. Soon after, Nardiello and Daley began to conceive an art film to be called My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult - a headline taken from a British tabloid Nardiello had noted a few years prior when he lived in London. The film was never completed, but the music they had recorded for its soundtrack appealed to Wax Trax! Records, who released the completed songs as a three-track EP entitled My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult (1987).
Dubbing themselves Groovie Mann (Nardiello) and Buzz McCoy (Daley), they launched My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult. When the first EP sold well, a full length album, I See Good Spirits and I See Bad Spirits, followed in 1988. Both attracted attention from college radio stations and dancefloors, as well as religious groups who balked at the overtly occult imagery in both the music and the artwork of the releases.
The group continued to stoke controversy with each subsequent release, which included a 12-inch single entitled Some Have to Dance... Some Have to Kill (1988), and they became even more popular with release of the 12-inch single Kooler Than Jesus (1989). Wax Trax! Records combined the first EP and these two singles and released it as a compilation entitled Kooler Than Jesus in 1989.
Nardiello and Daley recruited Thomas Thorn (aka Buck Ryder) to play keyboards and administer samples on the band's first tour. Brian Gillespie (aka Skip Town) from The Five and later Concussion Ensemble played a classic Slingerland Silver Sparkle drum set with sample triggers. The live act also featured female backup singers referred to as "The Bomb Gang Girlz", among the first of whom were Jackie Blaque, Rhonda Bond and Kitty Killdare.
Thrill Kill Kult's second album, Confessions of a Knife... (1990), became one of the best-selling releases on Wax Trax!, and continued to goad parental groups with song titles like A Daisy Chain 4 Satan and Rivers of Blood, Years of Darkness. The band released a cassette entitled El Infierno (1990) that showcased live disco versions of darker TKK songs from the 1989 Inferno Xpress tour.
The Thrill Kill Kult kept adding a revolving cast of characters to their stage show that, over the years, has included no wave chanteuse Lydia Lunch, bassist Charles Levi, guitarist William Tucker, Chris "Curse" Mackey from the bands Evil Mothers and Grim Faeries, Lady Galore from Lords of Acid (who appeared in TKK as Cherrie Blue), and a great number of artists, sound technicians, musicians, and filmmakers. Creatively, however, the core of the band has always been Nardiello and Daley, both on record and in the live act.
The "Sexplosion!" tour in 1991 achieved a particularly notorious reputation. In addition to being interestingly staged, featuring an actual bar and bartender onstage with the band, the show also featured a male/female duo known as Ten and Avaluscious White, who appeared onstage dressed in a number of different guises. At one point, Ten was dressed as Jesus strapped to a cross and featuring a large black dildo or alternately a large sausage between his legs, while Avaluscious White dress as a demon girl simulated oral sex on him. This created controversy and protest in a number of American locations, adding to the band's notoriety.
Thomas Thorn departed in 1991 from the live act to form his own band, The Electric Hellfire Club, which embraced the overtly Satanic themes My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult had only flirted with.
Thrill Kill Kult left Wax Trax! Records after their third album, Sexplosion! (1991), surpassed Confessions of a Knife... to become the biggest seller on the imprint, and major label Interscope Records took notice. TKK signed to Interscope, which re-released Sexplosion! and garnered the band their most familiar alternative radio hit, Sex On Wheelz. Their following two albums, 13 Above the Night (1993) and Hit & Run Holiday (1995), were recorded for Interscope until they parted with the label in 1996. The band's subsequent album A Crime For All Seasons (1997) was released on Red Ant Records.
Rykodisc became the band's next and most current home after putting out the remix compilation Dirty Little Secrets: Music to STRIP by... (1999). In 2001, the album The Reincarnation of Luna appeared on their own Sleazebox Records imprint, distributed by Invisible Records. The band released a companion piece to the album called Golden Pillz: The Luna Remixes (2002), as well as a live album called Elektrik Inferno Live (2002).
Rykodisc eventually released My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult's entire back catalog, as well as a new "best-of" compilation, a non-stop mega mix/remix album featuring mash-ups of tracks from different eras called Diamonds & Daggerz (2004), and a long-unreleased project entitled Gay, Black and Married (2005). TTK released another studio album entitled The Filthiest Show In Town in 2007.
In 2008, the band's own SleazeBox Records joined forces with Italy's Rustblade label and released more TKK albums: the remix album Blood + Dope + Sin + Gold (2008), studio album Death Threat (2009), and the compilation album Sinister Whisperz: Wax Trax Years (1987-1991) (2010).
In the summer of 2010, the band once again hit the road with Lords of Acid, with whom they toured on the Sextacy Ball Tour in 1995. The 2010 tour was originally titled Sextacy Ball 2, but was changed to the Sextreme Ball for legal reasons.
In 2012, My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult announced their 25 year anniversary tour covering over 30 dates in the USA tour featuring direct support by Left Spine Down.
In 2014, they released Spooky Tricks on SleazeBox Records. The band toured the United States for the album from May to July of 2014- playing a total of 29 dates. The band later played five shows in California from September to November in support of their older Wax Trax! material (1987-1991) and some tracks from Spooky Tricks.
On the first day of 2015, TTK released a new single entitled La Mere Vipere on their official label site Sleazebox.com. A new album is being prepared for a release in 2016.
Justin Thyme (aka Justin Bennett)
Sekret Dame DeZyre
Brian St. Clair
1987 - My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult (EP)
1988 - I See Good Spirits and I See Bad Spirits (LP)
1988 - Some Have to Dance... Some Have to Kill (EP)
1989 - Kooler Than Jesus (EP)
1989 - Kooler Than Jesus (single)
1990 - A Girl Doesn't Get Killed by a Make-Believe Lover... 'Cuz It's Hot (single)
1990 - Confessions of a Knife... (LP)
1990 - El Infierno (live)
1991 - Naïve / The Days of Swine + Roses (split with KMFDM)
1991 - Sexplosion! (LP)
1991 - Sexplosion! (single)
1992 - Sex on Wheelz (single)
1993 - 13 Above the Night (LP)
1993 - Blue Buddha (single)
1993 - Final Blindness (single)
1994 - Hit & Run Holiday (single)
1995 - Hit & Run Holiday (LP)
1997 - A Crime for All Seasons (LP)
1997 - Sexy Sucker (single)
1998 - Some Have to Dance... Some Have to Kill (promo)
1999 - Dirty Little Secrets: Music to STRIP by... (remix)
2001 - The Reincarnation of Luna (LP)
2002 - Golden Pillz: The Luna Remixes (remix)
2002 - Elektrik Inferno Live (live)
2004 - My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult (compilation)
2004 - The Beast of TKK (compilation)
2004 - Diamonds & Daggerz (LP)
2005 - Gay, Black, and Married (LP)
2005 - My Life Remixed: A Remix Tribute to My Life With the Thrill Kill Kult (remix)
2007 - The Filthiest Show In Town (LP)
2007 - Blood + Dope + Sin + Gold (remix)
2007 - The Resurrection of Luna (LP)
2009 - Death Threat (LP)
2010 - Sinister Whisperz: Wax Trax Years (1987-1991) (compilation)
2014 - Spooky Tricks (LP)
2015 - La Mere Vipere (single) Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.